Tag Archives: President

OTOAI’s national election on Nov 27

Post its successful convention in Ras Al Khaimah, Outbound Tour Operators Association of India (OTOAI) is gearing up for their national election on November 27, 2017. Making this annoucement, Guldeep Singh Sahni, President, OTOAI, said, “We are currently giving finishing touches to tasks and projects. We had previously undertaken to give the new committee a strong base in their transitory period to take our hard work even further during their tenure.” The elections will be conducted for 11 Executive Committee members who will further elect the new working committee.

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3rd OTOAI Convention in RAK begins with 180 delegates in attendance

The third Annual Convention of Outbound Tour Operators Association of India (OTOAI) kicked off in Ras Al Khaimah with 180 delegates. The Convention was inaugurated by Shaji Thomas, Director-Destination Tourism Development, Ras Al Khaimah; Guldeep Singh Sahni, President, OTOAI; Riaz Munshi, Convention Chairman and Vice President, OTOAI; Mohamed Khater, Senior Tourism Development Manager, Government of Ras Al Khaimah; Gurdeep Gujral, Joint Secretary, OTOAI; SanJeet, India Representative, Ras Al Khaimah, and Mahendra Vakharia, Chairman-Western Chapter, OTOAI. Sahni said, “Amidst the challenges in outbound tourism, there are growth opportunities and we need to seize them by raising our game and gearing up for growth. We need to up our value proposition and rise above the competition.” Thomas informed that India is the fourth largest source market for Ras Al Khaimah with Germany being the largest followed by UK and Russia. “India is a very important market for us. Earlier Indians used to stay 1.9 nights in RAK but now they stay for 2.25 nights which means they have explored more things to do at the destination. We have become a popular destination for weddings. This year we have 17 Indian boutique weddings and we hope to increase this number steadily.”

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IATO plans first outbound convention in Sri Lanka from Oct 2-5, 2017

After successfully concluding its annual convention in Bhubaneshwar, Odisha from September 7-10, the Indian Association of Tour Operators (IATO) has announced its first outbound convention in Sri Lanka. Pronab Sarkar, President, IATO, reveals, “We have been given a green signal from the Sri Lanka Tourism Board for our first outbound convention that will be held from October 2-5, 2017 in Colombo. We will be working on that now and will inform our members as soon as we return to New Delhi. This will be the first outbound convention that will be organized by IATO. We will discuss the agenda for that and announce it within a few days.”  

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SC clarifies on highway liquor ban; big respite for city hotels

The Supreme Court has clarified that the ban on sale of alcohol within 500 meters of state and national highways does not apply within city limits, granting relief to the liquor and hospitality industry. The Apex Court’s directive that no liquor shop shall be visible and directly accessible from the highways nor it should be situated within 500 metres of the outer edge of the national or state highway or of the service lane, created chaos in the hospitality industry. While lakhs of people lost their jobs, the MICE business impacted a great deal in the country. Terming it as a landmark order, Dilip Datwani, President, Hotel and Restaurant Association of Western India (HRAWI) says, “This was a much needed clarification as millions of jobs and the very survival of the nation’s tourism industry was at stake. It has been HRAWI’s contention right from the start that the original order could not have been directed at hotels and liquor vends within city limits. We are thankful to the Bench and the Hon’ble Justices for unequivocally clarifying this. The order will bring relief to almost 70 per cent of the affected hotels.”

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Skål International Delhi becomes the largest Club in the world

Skål International Delhi has surpassed Skål International Istanbul to become the largest club in the world; this was announced by Sunil Ghadiok, President, Skål International Delhi. With a current membership sitting of 229 members, the Club is targeting a total membership count of close to 300 by the end of the calendar year. Commenting on the this accomplishment, Ghadiok exclaimed, “It’s not so much about being the largest club in terms of membership rather it’s about bringing value to the members of the club both in terms of professional and personal aspects of their life”. He also added that the club will be starting various initiatives along with making efforts into bringing in the younger generation to further substantiate the Delhi club.

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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

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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.

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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.  

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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.”

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