Hazel Jain

World Economic Forum Index: A benchmarking tool

The World Economic Forum published its 2024 edition of its Travel & Tourism Development Index (TTDI) which measures factors and policies that enable sustainable and resilient development of the tourism sector. It offers insights into tourism economies’ strengths and areas for improvement, and the interconnected nature of tourism development, as well as facilitating strategic planning and multistakeholder dialogue to encourage sustainable growth.     United States The United States is the top scorer in the TTDI and the largest contributor to T&T GDP, both within the Americas region and globally. While the recent increase in sector wages has helped contribute to climbing operation costs, it has also helped partially bridge the T&T sector’s historically low wages in countries such as the United States. Thanks to typical advantages ranging from favourable business environments and open travel policies to well-developed transport, tourism and ICT infrastructure and natural, cultural and non-leisure attractions, United States ranked highest.   Portugal The growth in ‘bleisure’ travel and digital nomads has created new opportunities for businesses and destinations that can offer favourable conditions for business travel and leisure activities. In particular, economies that combine strong ICT infrastructure and healthcare standards, relatively reasonable cost of living, favourable visa policies and rich tourism attractions rank among the most attractive for digital nomads, with countries like Portugal and Spain ranking among the top for attractiveness for this new market.   Uzbekistan Newly ranked developing country of Uzbekistan experienced the greatest growth in TTDI scores between 2019 and 2024. While most high-income economies have experienced slight changes in their TTDI scores, the performance of Uzbekistan (+7.8%, 94th to 78th) has shown the most improvement in both score and rank compared to …

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Royal Caribbean opens new, 2025-26 vacations from Singapore to explore destinations across Asia

Royal Caribbean International welcomes the action-packed Ovation of the Seas to Singapore from October 2025 through March 2026. The fan favorite Quantum class ship brings a line-up of experiences that make for a memorable holiday for every type of traveler as they visit awe-inspiring destinations like Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand and more on 3- to 5-night getaways. Starting today, holidaymakers can be the first to mark their calendars and book the new holidays on Ovation on Royal Caribbean’s website.   With their pick of 3- and 4-night getaways, travellers of all ages have in store a taste of the sights and sounds of Southeast Asia, from indulging in renowned street food in the heart of UNESCO World Heritage Site George Town in Penang, Malaysia, to kicking back on the sandy beaches of Phuket, Thailand. Holidaymakers can also enjoy more time on holiday with longer adventures, such as a 5-night cruise that features a night in Phuket to explore the ever-popular night markets and an 8-night escape to Bali to indulge in culture and adventure while roaming the waterfalls and temples of Celukan Bawang in Bali and Lombok, Indonesia.   “Ovation is a ship packed full of adventure, and with the new season’s line-up of holidays, friends and families can choose to holiday their way between short getaways to Penang and Phuket and longer sailings to Indonesia or with nights out in Phuket,” said Angie Stephen, senior vice president, International, Royal Caribbean International. “Singapore is the gateway to explore many of Asia’s most loved destinations, and it’s the combination of all Southeast Asia has to offer and the variety of unparalleled Royal Caribbean experiences that has made this region a central part …

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MoT lists over 50 destinations to actively promote them under ‘Cool Summers of India’ campaign

In a bid to attract foreign tourists to India during summer, MOT has come up with a campaign to develop destinations that have good weather during this time. Manisha Saxena, DG, MOT, says, “The idea is to dispel the notion that India is too hot in summers, and attract tourists from warmer countries like Middle East, South East Asia and African countries. We hve picked over 50 destinations to actively promote them as tourist attractions.” Efforts are on to develop places like Bir Billing, Kinnaur, Dalhousie and Tirthan in HP, Patnitop in Jammu & Kashmir, Auli in Uttarakhand, Wayanad in Kerala, Thenzawl in Mizoram and Kurseong in West Bengal.

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India climbs to 39th position in World Economic Forum Index with largest tourism sector in South Asia

The 2024 edition of the Travel & Tourism Development Index (TTDI) released by World Economic Forum states that India has climbed to the 39th position, while US topped the list. India also ranks the highest in South Asia among the lower-middle-income economies. Earlier, India was ranked 54th in 2021 published index. Covering 119 economies, the TTDI measures the set of factors and policies that enable the sustainable and resilient development of the sector, which in turn contributes to the development of a country.

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India ninth-most popular among Europeans, stay most searched by travellers from UK, Germany, Spain, France, and the Netherlands: Agoda

As Europe’s summer approaches, travel insights from digital travel platform Agoda reveal that Asia is a top choice for European globetrotters. Asia not only ranks as the most popular non-European region, but its popularity is increasing compared to last year, with Agoda noting 52% more accommodation searches by Europeans for travel to Asia, and 26% more accommodation searches for travel to India.

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Indian hospitality saw Y-o-Y growth in performance in Q1 2024 (Jan-March) driven by rise in ADR of 8.5%: JLL

The Indian hospitality sector continued to witness Y-o-Y growth in performance in Q1 2024 (Jan-March), driven by a rise in ADR of 8.5% over Q1 2023, resulting in a RevPAR growth of 11.4%. Major factors contributing to this growth included an increase in corporate travel, weddings, and M!CE demand at the end of the financial year (FY24).

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Girisons Airways India along with Cyprus Airways announces flight-hotel packages for Indian travellers

Girisons Airways India, the Direct Selling Agent of Cyprus Airways, along with Cyprus Airways announces special flight-hotel packages for Indian travellers. Cyprus Airways is the national carrier of Cyprus operates flights to all major cities of Europe & Dubai from Larnaca. Indian travellers can now visit Cyprus on their European holidays. To facilitate this, we have now introduced “Flight + Hotel” packages. This package includes return flight from Rome/Milan/Zurich/Paris/Brussels to Larnaca (Cyprus) plus three nights hotel accommodation on all inclusive basis. Shreyder Elena of Cyprus Airways and Vivek Jain of Girisons Airways, are very excited about this package and wish to introduce Cyprus as a holiday destination to Indian travellers. These packages can now be booked in India through Girisons Airways located in Colaba, Mumbai via +91 9820060421

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MTF invites trade to participate in Melangé, an industry event designed to create new friendships and business collaborations

MTF invites the travel trade industry to Melangé, an exclusive industry partnership event designed to create new friendships and business collaborations. This unique, focused, and dynamic two-day event to be held on 19 & 20!Sept 2024 is tailored for exhibitors and buyers of diverse travel products. Special offers are available for early birds who register before 31st May. MTF Style Event at one of the most premier venues in India –  Jio Convention Centre BKC. Pradeep Saboo, Organiser, MTF, says, “We understand the power of meaningful connections and innovative collaborations. Our event offers a carefully curated environment where your products and services will be showcased to an audience of discerning buyers ready to explore new opportunities. Melangé is your platform to engage with industry leaders, present cutting-edge travel solutions, and foster impactful business relationships. Join us at Melangé, elevate your brand, connect with key decision-makers, and be part of an event that prioritizes quality interactions over quantity. Seize this opportunity to network, inspire, and be inspired. Let’s create a vibrant mosaic of collaborations and drive the travel industry forward together. Your participation at Melangé is not just an exhibition; it’s an investment in the future of travel.” A special offer is available for exhibiting partners is available. Registrations done before 31 May, 2024 will lead to : A) 50% discount on the published price B) With Category D, a Gold Sponsorship will be offered gratis C) With Category E, a Platinum Sponsorship will be offered gratis Register as an exhibitor here:  https://mtf.events/melange-exhibitors-registration/    

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Rida International Travel & Tourism LLC announces appointment of industry veteran Abraham John as India representative

In his role, Abraham John will focus on marketing Rida International Travel & Tourism LLC and help in enhancing the visibility of Rida International in India with emphasis on Luxury Travel, Upmarket Groups and MICE business. Abraham John brings along an experience of 50 years in the Travel & Tourism industry starting his career with Travel Corporation India (TCI) in 1974 followed by a 28 years journey in Bahrain where he managed Sunshine Tours.  Abraham was also responsible for successfully launching and executing the first International Travel & Tourism exhibition in Bahrain (BITE) which was widely accepted as an international travel and tourism exhibition. On his return to India, Abraham joined Fairfest Media Limited as Advisor who are the organisers of the largest travel show in India (OTM). Abraham was responsible for introducing many international tourism boards to OTM including UAE, Rwanda, Greece, Cyprus and many more. Abraham also runs a successful event management company – Inspiration Unlimited. He has successfully promoted many international destinations through roadshows and other marketing activities. “We are delighted to welcome Abraham to The Rida family and to have someone of his calibre, repute and experience advise us on strengthening our roots in India. We are confident that with his understanding of luxury travel, he will add tremendous value as the world begins to travel again” said Rafic Rida, Founder & Chairman – Rida International Travel & Tourism. “I am excited to launch Rida International Travel & Tourism LLC in India. Rida is expanding leaps & bounds in some of the key tourism destinations of the world which is widely accepted by the Indian community. Further I would like to extend my gratitude and thanks to Rafic Rida for entrusting me with such …

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Benchmark Travel Representations announces new partnership with Speke Holidays – Uganda & Rwanda

Benchmark Travel Representations is proud to announce its appointment as the Indian Representative of Speke Holidays-Uganda & Rwanda. Founded in 2008, Speke Holidays is one of Uganda’s premier destination management companies and the first to foray into the Indian market offering high-quality, full-service travel & safari arrangements across Uganda & Rwanda. Speke Holidays is committed to sustainability and environmentally responsible practices and does everything they can to reduce, reuse and recycle wherever they operate. Speke Holidays also employs an extensive team of safari guides to ensure every safari is spectacular. “Partnering with companies renowned for their innovation, commitment, and personalized approach is crucial to our global strategy. Our collaboration with Benchmark, bolstered by their network as well as their sales and marketing prowess, is poised to drive our long-term growth in the Indian outbound market,” affirmed Tony Mulinde, Founder and Managing Director of Speke Holidays. Benchmark Travel Representation will oversee business development for the brand across the key source markets of India. Commenting on the recent partnership, Savio Pereira, Managing Director, Benchmark Travel Representations stated, “As a travel representation company we are delighted to associate with Speke Holidays. Leveraging our industry expertise, we are poised to unlock new business opportunities, provide sales & marketing support to Speke Holidays and enhance ROI nationwide.”

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