The countries that have seen the most flight bookings to India for the period around the Holi festival are the United States, the United Arab Emirates and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, according to analysis conducted by Travelport. As of 14 March 2019, a total of 14,300 advanced bookings had been made2 through all global distribution systems (GDS) for flights from the United States to India, scheduled between 19 and 24 March 2019. Flight bookings from the United Arab Emirates and Kingdom of Saudi Arabia stood at 12,200 and 11,000 respectively.
Out of the ten countries with the largest flight booking volumes to India for the festival period, five were from the Middle East (United Arab Emirates, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Oman and Qatar). Bookings from Middle Eastern countries in the top ten totaled 35,300, half (49.8%) of total bookings made in top ten countries. With both the US and Canada making the list, the Americas registered the second most flight bookings (18,700; 26.4%), followed by Europe (12,400; 17.5%) and Asia Pacific (4,500; 6.3%).
Global distribution systems (GDS) are vast hi-tech reservation networks that allow travel agents, travel management companies and large corporations, among others, to search and book airline seats, hotel rooms, rental cars, and other travel related items. Globally in 2017, Travelport alone processed 1 trillion transactions through its platform. The company also delivers mobile services and apps to the travel industry as well as advanced analytics products, such as Travelport Business Intelligence.
Sandeep Dwivedi, Chief Operating Officer at InterGlobe Technology Quotient, Travelport’s Operator in six countries across the Asia Pacific region including India and Sri Lanka, said: “Tourists today, more than anything, are looking for truly unique and memorable experiences. Holi is one of the most colorful and spectacular religious festivals in the world so tends to attract a high number of tourists. There is nowhere better to celebrate Holi and experience its bright and vibrant festivities than right here in India. We look forward to welcoming tourists to our country and seeing them enjoy the festival of colors being brought to life.”