Tag Archives: President

MOT’s help desk for medical tourists to open at Mumbai airport in Oct

The Ministry of Tourism plans to introduce facilitation centers at six major airports for international patients coming to India for treatment. The first centre will open at the Mumbai airport in October. The purpose of these centers is to allow patients and their relatives, smooth passage for the treatment in the country without being approached by touts and these centers will be operational 24×7, throughout the year. The Ministry has sought help from the Indian Medical Association (IMA) and the Consortium of Accredited Healthcare Organisations. “Mumbai will be a pilot project. Depending on how it works out, centers will come up in Delhi, Kolkata, Bengaluru, Chennai and Hyderabad,” said Dr. K.K. Aggarwal, President, IMA and member of the ministry’s medical tourism board. Aggarwal further informed that the centers will have trained personnel who will guide patients and their relatives if they have already short-listed a hospital and will provide information about accredited hospitals in case they are yet to short-list one. “Often, when some of the patients land up undecided, they are misguided by touts. Through the centre, we can eventually eliminate the touts and avoid these patients from landing up at some quack,” said IMA member Dr. Jayesh Lele, adding that the centre will come up right after the customs clearance. The ministry also plans to have a telephone link at the counter to the Incredible India info helpline for assistance while dealing with persons in need of language services. Source: The Hindu

Read More »

CWT launches new division dedicated to hotels

Carlson Wagonlit Travel (CWT) has announced the formal launch of its new business division wholly dedicated to hotel distribution – RoomIt by CWT. The new division is focused on creating and delivering a new and innovative experience to expanding access and providing greater variety to customer accommodations around the world. Scott Brennan, President, hotels, Carlson Wagonlit Travel, says, “RoomIt by CWT simplifies the hotel booking process and puts the most relevant lodging options all in one place. CWT is committed to giving our clients a wide range of global options at the most competitive rates and our investment into RoomIt will enable better, more personalized service to our travelers.” RoomIt is designed with increased functionality and personalization capabilities while equipping companies with the tools to effectively monitor employees’ travel schedules.

Read More »

HRAWI’s seminar on GST in Mumbai on July 13

After close to two weeks of relative uncertainty, many misconceptions, and quite a few incorrect assumptions, hotel and restaurants in Mumbai will have an opportunity to clear the cloud over GST and receive clarity on any doubts regarding the new tax law. For this, the Hotel and Restaurant Association Of Western India (HRAWI) has organised a seminar on ‘GST Law – 2017’ on July 13, 2017, at the Trident, Nariman Point. The seminar, open to both its members and non-members, will be addressed by eminent experts who also will help resolve any queries with regards to the new tax and billing systems. “The GST is a big change to the taxation system for our country and to get familiarized with any change takes time. Over the last one week the association has been trying to identify the most common issues and queries posed by hoteliers and restaurateurs and also by customers. Through this seminar we intend to put to rest any ambiguities and address any grey areas with respect to GST. We have brought on board the best minds and experts on matters of taxation and who would be happy to help us bridge any gaps in our understanding of the GST. We are positive that participating hotels and restaurants will greatly benefit from this seminar,” says Dilip Datwani, President, HRAWI.  

Read More »

ETAA conducts GST session for its members

Enterprising Travel Agents Association (ETAA) organised a session on GST in Mumbai for its members. The event was attended by 75 plus travel agents. The session was conducted by CA Yash Parmar, from Gabhawala & Company. Commenting on the occasion Jagat Mehta, President, ETAA, said, “We had a lot of queries coming in regarding GST and we decided to keep a session on GST to answer doubts of our members. Our expert brought some clarity on how GST is an effective tool and an inevitable truth for all industries, he highlighted the GST implications on the travel trade. We also plan to do GST sessions in Delhi, Kolkata, Bangalore and Pune where we have member presence. We are worried with competing with OTA’s as they are not registered in India and how that will affect us as agents due to GST and will be doing more such sessions on GST until things are clear.”

Read More »

TAAI Convention to be held in Kunming, China from Aug 18-20

The Managing Committee of TAAI has decided Kunming as the venue for the 64th Convention & Exhibition of TAAI, to be held from August 18-20, 2017. Sunil Kumar R, President, TAAI, said, “We are excited to inform you that we are hosted by Yunnan Government, People’s Republic of China. The event is being coordinated by MFITS – Mao Fa International Travel Services, a unit of Service Bureau of Ministry of Foreign Affairs, China.” The exhibition and inaugural dinner will be held at the InterContinental Hotel, Kunming. The registration forms will be soon rolled out. The registration will be open by July 5, 2017 and close by July 20, 2017. During 2016, TAAI had organised its convention at Emirates Palace, Abu Dhabi.

Read More »

MTOA conducts GST seminar for members in Mumbai

Following close on the heels of national travel trade associations, the Maharashtra Tour Organisers Association (MTOA) recently conducted a seminar on the impending GST for its members in Mumbai. It was conducted on June 5, 2017, by noted Service Tax expert Manish Gadia, Partner, GMJ & Co, who conducted similar sessions for TAAI as well as IATO. Sudhir Patil, President, MTOA, says, “We welcome the new GST regime though there is a lot of fear factor attached to it. Complications are expected. But I hope that more seminars will help us make this a smooth transition.” The association also launched its website (www.mtoa.co.in) on the same day.

Read More »

Don’t let tourism suffer in Gulf crisis: UFTAA

Universal Federation of Travel Agents Association (UFTAA) has expressed concern over the impact on tourism of Gulf crisis due to Saudi–led grouping of Bahrain, Egypt and the UAE, Yemen and Maldives, cutting diplomatic ties with Qatar. Sunil Kumar, President, UFTAA, said, “UFTAA appeals to the involved countries to not involve Tourism at large and Aviation in specific for political purposes. Tourism is a vehicle for peace and understanding between nationals even if the politicians think otherwise. The right for free movement of people is very basic.” He was speaking on the sidelines of IATA’s Annual General Meeting at Cancun, Mexico.

Read More »

High tax on 5-star hotels compromises on security: ATTOI

P. K. Anish Kumar, President, ATTOI, was quite disappointed with the GST announcement. “Most of the foreign travellers have concerns regarding safety, security, cleanliness in India and thus choose 4 or 5 star hotels to stay in. This does not mean they are rich but prefer safe, quality accommodation. Now with 28 per cent tax on hotels and 5 per cent GST to be paid by agents kills the industry as the effective tax to be paid will be 33 per cent. How will we compete with destinations like Hong Kong ,which has no tax on hospitality industry? Earlier tax in Kerala was 19 per cent even on 4 and 5 star hotels and now competitiveness of the industry is thrown off with direct 28 per cent. A houseboat in Kerala costs above Rs. 6000 and the tax will deter the USP of the destination. India will not be seen as a long haul destination any more as packages will become shorter due to the expenses to be incurred by the foreign tourists. Tourism has to be seen as an employment and revenue generator and government’s approach to penalise tourists and earn money from them will ruin the tourism industry overall,” he claimed.

Read More »

We’ve got what we wanted: IATO

Claiming that applying of CENVAT credit with 9 per cent service tax was cumbersome, Pronab Sarkar, President, IATO, said, “ GST was awaited for a long time and we were demanding from the government that since there is a lot of multiplicity of taxes in the tourism sector, the taxes should be rationalised and reduced. Thus, we were hoping to be put under the lowest GST slab and get some relief. I am glad that the government has agreed to both of them and has given us the same status what we wanted with 5 per cent GST rate. Also, there is no CENVAT credit on that. We are only concerned about one aspect of hotels, as they have put 28 per cent GST on hotels over Rs. 5000 which should not be more than 18 per cent. However, the hotel industry should come out and take up this issue. The government should encourage more tourists to come and not only look for more taxes. Rather, it should look for more tourists and get a bigger chunk of foreign exchange, which will not only generate revenue but also a lot of employment opportunities in the hospitality industry.”

Read More »