Tag Archives: Sri Lanka

HPMF Sri Lanka Chapter launched during International Housekeepers Summit 2018 in Colombo

HPMF Sri Lanka Chapter was recently launched at Shangri-La Hotel Colombo during International Housekeepers Summit 2018. This will be the second international chapter after the launch of Middle East Chapter in Dubai in February 2018. HPMF has grown to over 12 Chapters in India and 2 outside India. The membership base has increased from its initial three to almost 2000 members across India and the Middle East. The launch event was attended by several industry professionals from Asia which mostly included housekeepers, buyers, General Managers and hotel owners. Soon the HPMF Sri Lanka chapter council members will be announced so that top fraternity professionals from Sri Lanka take forward the vision of HPMF to all members. Before the Annual Convention at Varanasi from October 25-27, 2018, HPMF intends to launch the Nepal and Bangladesh chapters. Mohan Deshpande, Chairman, HPMF was thrilled on the overall turn-out of the hospitality professionals at Summit.

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Sports tourism industry in India witnesses 10-12% growth

Sports tourism is witnessing 10-12 per cent growth as Indians are showing more enthusiasm for visiting a country to attend sports event, according to industry experts. “Globally, sports tourism is a multi-billion dollar industry. According to estimates, global sports tourism was worth USD 7 billion in 2017. While it is a mature industry overseas, in India it is in infancy (stage),” says Karan Anand, Head of Relationships, Cox and Kings. The first love for Indians is cricket and they travel to watch the game, whether in India or overseas, he added. “There has also been a shift in the interest for other sporting events like the Soccer World Cup or the Olympics. We see 10-12 per cent growth in arrivals to these destinations, when a major sporting event takes place,” he said. Indians travel to Australia, New Zealand, Sri Lanka and England to watch cricket matches. However, over the last 10 years, there is a growing interest to watch the Olympics, the Soccer World Cup and Grand Prix Formula One motor events. The Olympics or Soccer World Cup are highlights for Indians and they love the atmosphere associated with the games, Anand said, adding that there are people who travel to specific sporting events during the Olympics or a few of them only travel for the opening ceremony. He said this segment is primarily dominated by men who come together to watch the sporting event. Source: PTI

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HRAWI to host 18th regional convention in Sri Lanka

The Hotel and Restaurant Association of Western India (HRAWI) has announced plans of hosting its 18th Regional Convention in Colombo, Sri Lanka. HRAWI, for the first time ever, is going to host the Regional Convention overseas. Scheduled to take place from June 27-30, 2018, the convention will integrate business sessions on specially curated topics for hospitality professionals with evening gala over cocktails and dinner. With over 300 participants expected to gather at one place, the convention will offer business networking opportunities for industry players. As an added attraction, HRAWI will also organise post-convention tours for delegates to unwind and relax in the paradise beach destination of Sri Lanka.  

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Singapore most powerful passport in the world; India jumps up three places to rank 75

According to Passport Index developed by global financial advisory firm Arton Capital, Singapore tops the rank of being the most powerful passport in the world under the Global Passport Power Rank 2017. This ranks passports of the world by their total visa-free score. Singapore is closely followed by Germany, Sweden and South Korea who are tied at number three, followed by eight other countries holding the number four spot jointly. The Indian passport appears at number 75 with a visa-free score of 51, ranking even lower than African countries like Zimbabwe, Rwanda and Sierra Leone. Some of the countries with a lower ranking than India are Egypt, Bhutan Cambodia, Jordon and our neighbours Sri Lanka and Nepal. The last on the list is Afghanistan with a score of 22 preceded by Iraq and Pakistan with a joint visa-free score of 26.

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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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45% growth in medical tourism to India

According to data provided by Ministry of Home Affairs, the number of medical visas issued by India in 2016 rose by 45 per cent over 2015. India issued more than 1.78 lakh medical visas in 2016, including for follow up treatment, as against 1.22 lakh in 2015, according to the data. A Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) report titled “India Services Sector—A Multi-trillion Dollar Opportunity for Global Symbiotic Growth 2017” stated that the presence of world-class hospitals and skilled medical professionals has strengthened India’s position as a preferred destination for medical tourism. Treatment for major surgeries in India costs only a fraction—in some cases as low as 10 per cent of that in developed countries. “Majority of the patients coming to India for treatment are from the Middle East, Africa, Bangladesh, Afghanistan, Maldives, Pakistan, Bhutan and Sri Lanka. India’s cost advantage will significantly open doors to the US and Europe over future, due to lower cost than the US and almost half that of Europe.” Dental tourism accounts for 10 per cent of the medical tourism and the government is keen to promote it. “India provides competitive cost advantage at one tenth of the cost of the US and Europe. By 2020, medical tourism industry of India is expected to touch $8 billion,” the report said. Source: Livemint

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Airbnb and the World Bank Group partner to boost rural tourism

Airbnb and the World Bank Group signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to partner toward boosting developing economies through tourism. The two organizations will also share information on the current scale of alternative accommodation options and home sharing across several countries, beginning with pilot projects in Sri Lanka and India. Through the agreement, signed at the 2017 Tourism Knowledge Exchange, an event highlighting the latest innovations in sustainable tourism, Airbnb and the World Bank Group will examine ways in which emerging destinations use new technology and platforms such as Airbnb to create economic opportunities for communities that have not traditionally benefited from tourism and hospitality. Travel and tourism is the largest service industry in the world and accounts for nearly 10 percent of global GDP. In 2015, revenues from international tourism represented $421 million in emerging economies. Emerging markets’ share of total global arrivals is expected to reach 57% by 2030. This corresponds to over 1 billion travelers, each spending money, transferring wealth, and creating jobs. “At Airbnb, we believe home sharing can help close the widening gap in economic opportunity between urban and rural areas,” said Clark Stevens, director, Government Affairs and Strategic Partnerships at Airbnb. “We’ve already seen the important economic engine that home sharing has become for communities around the world, and we’re excited to partner with the World Bank Group to further study the development impacts of home sharing and pilot projects in emerging tourist destinations.” “Travel and tourism is one of the largest service industries in the world and accommodation is at its core. The sharing economy has created opportunities across the sector and this partnership with Airbnb allows us to better understand those opportunities, …

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Melbourne joins SriLankan Airlines’ global route network from Oct 2017

SriLankan Airlines, the national carrier of Sri Lanka and a member of oneworld alliance, will be establishing its presence in Australia with daily non-stop services to Melbourne commencing October 29, 2017. The non-stop services will also facilitate passengers from the Middle East and South Asia seeking onward connectivity via Colombo to/from Australia. The airline will be operating Airbus 330-200 aircraft on the route. For the convenience of travellers seeking onward connectivity from its Colombo hub, SriLankan currently connects over 10 Indian points with over 100 flights a week, which includes services to/from Chennai, Bangalore, Hyderabad, Calcutta, Trivandrum, Tiruchirappalli, Cochin, Mumbai and New Delhi. SriLankan will be adding Visakhapatnam, Coimbatore and Hyderabad to its route network in July this year, further expanding its presence in India. SriLankan Airlines’ Chief Executive Officer, Captain Suren Ratwatte, said, “Our presence in Australia cements the long-standing relationship between our two countries. We recently celebrated the 70th anniversary of diplomatic relations between our nations, and the addition of Melbourne signifies our strategy of optimizing the Airline’s network in line with our restructuring. This also means that we have connected another continent to our global route map. On the other hand, given the number of Sri Lankans residing in and around Victoria, we fulfill a long felt need for a direct service. We are proud to welcome all the diverse residents of Victoria who can now enjoy the direct connections when visiting their friends and families throughout our network.” Australia is home to one of the largest Sri Lankan expatriate communities, many of whom reside in and around Melbourne, the capital of Australia’s ‘Garden State’, Victoria. This factor, together with the tremendous potential for business travel and …

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Indonesia AirAsia X launches Mumbai to Bali flight services

Indonesia AirAsia Extra has started a direct flight from Mumbai to Bali (Denpasar) from May 19, 2017, with a 45 minute layover in Kuala Lumpur. It will operate this route using A330-300 with 377 seats (12 flatbeds and 365 economy seats). The flight departs from Mumbai at 22.50 hours and arrives in Bali at 10.45 hours the next day. Indonesia AirAsia Extra is the 4th airline under the AirAsia Group to operate to Indian destinations. Commenting on the occasion Suresh Nair, General Manager, India, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and Nepal, AirAsia, said, “The flight has got good response and we are happy with the current response from Mumbai and Maharashtra market. We will have daily flights from Mumbai making seven flights a week. We expect good number of people to travel from India to Indonesia and vice versa. We started the flights with an introductory fare of Rs. 2,552 (plus taxes) which was well received by everyone. We continue to offer low fares on all sectors. Currently we are offering a return fare of Rs 14,999 and we continue to strive to keep the fares as low as possible.”

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SriLankan Airlines increases frequencies to New Delhi

SriLankan Airlines, the national carrier of Sri Lanka and a member of the oneworld alliance will be adding four more frequencies to its current daily operations to/from New Delhi from July 15, 2017. A total of 11 flights a week will operate to and out of Delhi. The purpose of adding these flights is to provide passengers with added convenience and a wider choice in terms of travel between the two countries and seeking onward connectivity. The morning arrival time in Colombo for the new flight will also give convenient connections to destinations like Maldives, Beijing, Shanghai, Singapore and Bangkok. Commenting on the occasion, SriLankan Airlines, Manager Northern & Eastern India, Chinthaka Weerasinghe, stated, “North India is a key market for us and with most of the industrialists and business families spread across Delhi & neighboring states. While we have always received a strong response from this market, Delhi serves as a key business hub for all multinational corporations. These additional flights will cater to growing business, corporate and leisure demand between Sri Lanka and Delhi.”

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