Tag Archives: MoT

MOT to release new post-lockdown protocols for accommodation units: Prahlad Singh Patel

Prahlad Singh Patel, Minister of State (I/C), Tourism & Culture, Govt. of India, has said that they will be releasing new post-lockdown protocols for accommodation units, so that the clients can feel confident about travelling as well as overall safety. “Our objective is to revive demand as soon as possible. One way we can do this is to help overcome the fear of health while travelling. The ministry will soon be releasing new post-lockdown protocols for accommodation units to give confidence to clients to travel and stay safely. We are also coming out with a set of recommendations for different segments—travel agents, tour operators, transport operators, and facilitators/guides,” he shared in an interview to Hindustan Times.

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DGFT to devise standard list of documents on filing SEIS claims

In a webinar organised by MOT and IATO to address queries related to filling Service Exports from India Scheme (SEIS) by tourism industry stakeholders, Suman Sharma, ADG, Directorate General of Foreign Trade (DGFT), said that she and her team are trying to devise an industry-wise standard list of documents, which can help firms while filing SEIS claims. “The work on the document is almost complete from my end. I will submit the same to DGFT for their approval. It will probably help all the industries including tourism and will help them know what additional documents DGFT needs while they file SEIS and reduce the time of processing their application. Currently, DGFT doesn’t have FAQs specific to SEIS filing and claim procedure. Hence, a lot of travel industry professionals are facing issues with the same.” During the webinar, Rupinder Brar, ADG, MOT inquired about the FAQs looking at the number of queries from the trade and Suman Sharma agreed to do the same to help travel trade. Sharma is also the nodal officer to deal with SEIS claims and issues on tour and travel cases.

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MOT to provide incentives under CSS Scheme for promoting M!CE Tourism in India

In order to give a boost to M!CE Tourism and attract more M!CE events to the country, Ministry of Tourism, Government of India has decided to extend the benefits to M!CE organisers in the form of certain incentives under the Champion Sector in Services Scheme (CSSS). For this purpose, a M!CE fund has been set up under CSSS. Under this initiative to encourage M!CE operators to bring more conferences/meetings/seminars to India, they will be entitled to avail certain financial incentives in the form of GST reimbursement. The incentive would be made available for a period of three years. A prior approval from MOT will be required to avail incentives under the scheme along with a NOC from the concerned travel trade association. MOT has made India Convention Promotion Bureau (ICPB) as the nodal agency for steering and promoting the scheme who in turn would motivate Indian Travel Planners / Societies / Associations towards publicising the scheme.

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Need to re-align promotions and marketing campaigns for markets that revive from COVID-19 earlier: Rupinder Brar

Rupinder Brar, ADG, Tourism, has said that MOTs marketing and promotional campaigns have to be re-aligned according to the markets that could come out of the impact of COVID-19 earlier and have the disposable incomes to travel again. While speaking at the first TravTalk Digital Conclave, she said. “We would need to re-align our promotions and marketing campaigns in the light of the situation worldwide and we are still in the middle of this crisis. Quarter 2 would require us to now sit down on the drawing board and really work and re-align some of our marketing plans. Even regarding the Global Media Plan that we worked out in November-December this year, we need to be expanding our footprint. We have started our campaigns in Latam and we have identified some countries from Africa where the campaign will be followed. We need to work on the metrics of the impact of COVID in different countries to identify markets, and also see in those countries what kind of disposable income and what is the age bracket will be open to travel. Accordingly we need to picture the marketing plans for those countries.”

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Around 1200 tourists assisted through ‘Stranded in India’ portal till 9th April

The StrandedinIndia portal of the Ministry of Tourism (MOT) continues to provide support to the tourists. Until 9th April, the number of tourists who have been assisted are 1194. In addition, the regular toll-free helpline 1363 which the MOT runs has had 779 calls from 22nd March to 9th April. Besides this, the Ministry officials are working round the clock with the tourism and hospitality industry to understand the immediate and long term issues that are coming up as an impact of COVID-19.  

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MOT holds virtual conference with travel and hospitality associations

The Ministry of Tourism (MOT) held a virtual conference with the tourism and hospitality sector associations of the industry recently, which was led by Yogendra Tripathi, Secretary Tourism, MOT, along with senior officials of the Ministry. The Associations represented through remote conferencing were FAITH, CII, FICCI, PHDCCI and IMAI. The industry put forth a number of ideas and suggestions for tiding over the crisis created by COVID-19 in the sector of tourism and hospitality. The Ministry on its part shared the concerns and assured the associations that the government is very much with them in this grim hour and that they would work towards the suggestions put forth. There would be a lot of thrust on promoting domestic tourism was a common takeaway. MOT is using its social handles to create awareness of the need to stay at home safe in the period of lockdown and prepare to travel once the world opens up. In the meantime, the course modules of the Institutes of Hotel Management are being held online and faculty and students are using technology to remain abreast with their course curriculum.

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As an industry, we should start formalizing plans for revival: DG Tourism

Meenakshi Sharma, Director General, Ministry of Tourism in a letter to all the travel trade associations on taking measures on COVID-19 has said that as an industry, we should start formalizing plans for revival, once the situation stabilizes and is under control. “Tourism stakeholders have made several suggestions on measures that could be taken to keep the confidence of the industry, consumers and stakeholders, which will be considered for taking up with the concerned authorities. We look forward to everyone’s support and assure you of ours in overcoming the situation,” said Sharma. She was talking in reference to a meeting with stakeholders chaired by the Tourism Minister on March 16.

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FAITH shares regular updates with PMO & MOT on COVID-19 impact on industry

Federation of Associations in Indian Tourism and Hospitality (FAITH) has been sharing a regular updates with the Ministry of Tourism(MOT) and Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) on the impact of COVID-19 on the industry and apprise the Government on the effect of the outbreak has been till now. The update letter reads, “This is one of the worst crisis ever to hit the Indian tourism industry  impacting all its geographical segments – inbound, outbound & domestic, almost all tourism verticals— leisure, adventure, heritage, mice, cruise, corporate & niche segments. The whole tourism value chain across hotels, travel agents, tour operations, destinations, restaurant, family entertainment venues & air, land & sea transportation.” – Inbound foreign tourism of $ 28 bn + in value terms accounts for on an average basis almost 60-65%  between October to March. As the news of the virus started picking up from November, the percentage  of cancellations started going up in this segment exponentially and is reaching a peak of almost 80% now in March in many Indian locations. The value at risk from this segment will be in multiples of tens of thousands of crores. – The forward bookings for the inbound season of October 2020 – March 2021, which should have started picking are all muted.  These are showing highly discouraging signs with cancellations of important global travel marts which are marketplaces for contracting for the next season. – The value of NRI segment from developed markets whose major season for visit to their families and relatives is around 60% + during April to September. There are reports of large-scale forward cancellations from these and unless the progression of the virus stops the almost entire value …

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MOT changes gears at ITB Berlin, to have panel discussion with German tour operators

Rakesh Kumar Verma, Joint Secretary, MOT, will be travelling for ITB Berlin 2020 with a delegation of around 49 exhibitors, which will be led by Prahlad Singh Patel, Minister of State (I/C), Tourism and Culture. The format has been changed this time for ITB Berlin, as there will not be a presentation and press conference, but a panel discussion instead. “We will be having a breakfast meeting with the German FTOs in Berlin. We have a panel discussion on the first day, which will focus on global trends in tourism focusing on Incredible India and will be moderated by a CNN journalist. It will have around 5 panelists including German tour operators who will be talking about India and their experience. While there will not be a specific campaign for ITB Berlin, we will project the efforts we are taking and the whole range of offerings we have been developing at MOT. Apart from that we have small group engagements and one-to-one engagements at the VIP lounge at India Pavilion of ITB. We are trying to project India as an experiential and transformational destination for the travellers, which is one of the key messages that we are putting across,” he shares. “The Ministerial delegation would consist of 49 co-exhibitors, including state governments, tour operators, hotels, wellness centres, as well as Ayurveda society. We’ve taken a huge space of 705 sq. m. CMD, ITDC, will also be there. It will be a combined marketing effort by the Government and the stakeholders,” reveals Verma.

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MOT identifies 180 tourist sites for organising Swachhta Action Plan activities

Under the Swachh Bharat Mission, the Ministry of Tourism (MOT) has identified 180 tourist sites for organizing Swachhta Action Plan (SAP) activities during the year 2019-20 to create Swachhta Awareness amongst the tourists, students of schools/colleges and stakeholders across the country. Besides, Swachhta Pakhwada and Swachhta-Hi-Seva activities have also been undertaken by MOT at several locations across the country. Facilities like drinking water, toilet, interpretation centre, wi-fi, illumination, ramps, pathways, publication sale counter etc. are provided at the World Heritage and Ticketed monuments. Further, existing facilities are upgraded as per requirement and its up-gradation is a continuous process.

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