Category Archives: Associations

TAAI holds badminton tournament for members in Lucknow

The Travel Agents association of India (TAAI) Uttar Pradesh & Uttarakhand Chapter held a badminton tournament for its members on January 7, 2018, in Lucknow. Sunil B. Satyawakta, Chairman, TAAI UP & UK Chapter, said, “The tournament was a success. We had received overwhelming response to our Tigerair Cup (TAAI Badminton League – 2016) and that motivated us to hold TAAI Badminton League – 2018. As expected, about 40 per cent more participants registered for this event. They were from travel agencies, tour operators, airlines, tourism boards and hotels.” The league was held at the Babu Banarsi Das UP Badminton Academy in Lucknow. The league was played under the categories: Travel Agents – Singles Male, Travel Agents – Singles Female & Family – Singles, Airlines/GDS/Insurance/Forex/Hotels – Singles, Travel Agents – Doubles Male, Mixed Doubles and Kids under 18. The event was inaugurated by Avnish Awasthi, Principal Secretary & Director General, Uttar Pradesh Tourism. The tournament was sponsored by UP Tourism and supported by Oman Air, Scoot, Fly Dubai, Indigo, Jet Airways, Vistara, Saudia, Asian Roots Tour Co. Ltd., Royal Gulf Tourism Dubai, Decathelon, Udaan, TLC, Levana Suites and Hyatt Regency, Lucknow. Also present were Office Bearers Anupam Shukla, Hon. Secretary, and Umair N Shah, Hon. Treasurer of TAAI Uttar Pradesh & Uttarakhand Chapter.

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1st Adventure Sports Expo Asia from Jan 27-29 in New Delhi

The first ever Adventure Sports Expo Asia is going to be held in New Delhi from January 27-29 at Four Points by Sheraton. As many as 15000 visitors and sports enthusiasts are expected to attend the show. Suman Billa, Joint Secretary, Ministry of Tourism, informed that the government has declared 2018 as the Year of Adventure and the ministry is going all out to promote the country as an important hub for adventure tourism. Ajeet Bajaj, Senior Vice President, Adventure Tour Operators Association of India (ATOAI) and the Managing Director of Snow Leopard Adventures, said, “The mission behind the Expo is bringing together all stakeholders to make India an adventure powerhouse while keeping risk management, sustainability and responsible tourism at the forefront. ATOAI is the backbone as far this industry is concerned in India and our aim is to make India a global hub for adventure tourism. Internationally, the adventure sports industry is a $400 billion industry. According to industry estimates, the Indian inbound industry for adventure tourism in growing by 5-7 per cent annually and domestic tourism for this segment is on an upswing, growing by 20-25 per cent annually.” The expo will host many sessions addressing the various issues of the adventure sports industry with luminaries from across the globe. Commenting on the Expo, Rishi Narain, Founder and Managing Director, RN Sports Marketing, said, “India already has huge potential as an adventure sports destination with so much diversity from mountains to rivers and desserts. ASEA 2018 will market India as an iconic destination for adventure to the world with the support of ATOAI. The event will also recognise individuals/groups and companies in the field of adventure on the …

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ICPB to hold roadshows in Europe

The India Convention Promotion Bureau (ICPB) held its first interactive meeting of the newly elected Governing Board and all members of the body at Hotel Samrat, Chanakyapuri, New Delhi. Enlisting new plans of ICPB in 2018, Chander Mansharamani, Vice Chairman, ICPB says, “For our international roadshows in Europe, we are planning to go in for three cities- Geneva, Paris and Brussels. Most of the international organisations have headquarters in these three cities. We are raising money to hire a PR agency that can get appointments with most of the associations there.” Talking about the key takeaway from the interactive session, he says, “We at ICPB are very happy that we could build up confidence with the Ministry of Tourism, where they are coming forward to ask us what exactly we want, their wish to partner with us and do things together. For 2018, besides roadshows, training programmes and convention, we will be concentrating on the marketing side. We market India as the preferred convention destination, which involves the roadshows abroad. This is the first time we will be going abroad to do a roadshow.”  

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ATOAI to hold Adventure Tourism Summit this April

Adventure Tour Operators’ Association of India (ATOAI) is all set to organise Adventure Tour Summit from April 26-28, 2018. Captain Swadesh Kumar, President, ATOAI, reveals that they had requested the Ministry of Tourism to declare 2018 as the ‘Year of Adventure Tourism’. He claims that it took them almost three months to convince MOT, and now they will organise activities related to this every month of this year in India. “Under this, we have requested the ministry to put adventure as the theme as part of its advertisement. We are doing a mega show where we are inviting 500 tour operators, travel agents and media from across the world from April 26-28, 2018. The aim is to make India’s incoming business for adventure tourism double in three years. The celebration will start from Delhi in January when we will be doing a roadshow, where we wish to have a seminar on an industry level and talk about adventure tourism. February we will be going to Maharashtra, and we will be carried on. One important thing we will be doing is that we will be launching the guidelines for adventure tourism in this country—guidelines for sustainable tourism, good practices and safety,” he elaborated.

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OTOAI to push for more members in 2018

The first members’ meet of the newly elected Executive Committee of the Outbound Tour Operators Association of India (OTOAI) held in New Delhi lay emphasis on increasing the number of members. While formally presenting the new team to its members, Mahendra Vakharia, President, Outbound Tour Operators Association of India (OTOAI) stressed that in 2018, the association would focus on adding to its member base substantially. He added, “Our efforts would be on advocating greater knowledge amongst the members and simultaneously to engage various tourism boards to invest in education. He also added that moving forward, a digital push will become a mandate for all industry players lest they get left behind. Signing off on a successful year despite industry challenges, the association is all geared up for the coming year.

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Hotels, restaurants to remain open till 5 am on Dec 24, 25, 31

In response to a request made by Hotel and Restaurant Association of Western India (HRAWI), the State Excise Department has granted permission to hotels and restaurants for extension of operation timings on December 24, 25 and 31. Dilip Datwani, President, HRAWI, says, “The HRAWI thanks the authorities for obliging. This permission allows liquor serving establishments to continue serving patrons until 5 am in the morning of the indicated days. Having received this clearance, now we await the permission from the police. We have submitted a letter to Satish Mathur, Director General of Police requesting for the same and hope that we receive the police clearances at the earliest.”

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HRAWI hails Maharashtra Govt.’s notification allowing shops to remain open 24*7

Lauding the Maharashtra Government’s notification allowing shops and establishments to remain open 24*7, Dilip Datwani, President, Hotel and Restaurant Association of Western India (HRAWI), said, “This is a welcome move and a sign of progress. The biggest benefit of this decision will be employment and it holds the potential to increase employment opportunities by 25 per cent in the State. This is a definite boost to tourism and economy and will help the hospitality sector to emerge even stronger. Although, we would have wished for the act to be extended to bars too. HRAWI appeals to the Government to consider allowing bars operational at least up to 3am, if not 24*7.”

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IAAI’s I-Top issues India’s first NDC ticket

The IATA Agents Association of India (IAAI) and the I-Top team has issued the first NDC ticketing in India. Last week, Magellan Travel Services in Chennai issued the first NDC ticket in India on a British Airways flight for the MAA/LON sector through I-Top using the Vertiel Technologies Direct connect platform. It has issued the NDC tickets at a price lower than all OTAs in India. Reservation and NDC ticketing on Lufthansa and Emirates airlines are also ready and 10 agents across the country shall be starting the pilot run by next week through I-Top. The advantage and the specialty of the I-Top powered by TravelShore is that the portal can be used to issue tickets simultaneously through both GDS connectivity (presently Galileo, which will be followed soon by Amadeus and Abacus) and Verteil Direct Connect for NDC ticketing using BSP mode of settlement. A major benefit is that the NDC ticketing will curtail discrepancies and agents will be free from any ADMs. Biji Eapen, President, IAAI, says, “Our experimental trial runs have turned out to be successful and prove that the I-Top users using NDC ticketing can easily avail better prices than any OTA in India. Especially in a country like India, where zero commission prevails, I-Top will serve as a ‘magic lamp’ for agents to generate revenue. Once I-Top becomes fully operational and more members start using, together and consistently, we will negotiate with airline operators for ‘consolidated special deals’ so that the user member shall be substantially remunerated for their services rendered to the airlines. I-Top shall be offered to the common memberships by second week of January as a New year gift.”

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PATA India Chapter unanimously elects team for 2017-19

Rashmi Verma, Secretary, Ministry of Tourism, Government of India, will lead PATA India Chapter as its Chairperson for the term 2017-19. This was announced during the 47th Annual General Meeting of PATA India Chapter held at The Claridges, New Delhi on December 19. While SanJeet, Director, DDP Publications, was re-elected as the association’s Vice Chairman; J.S. Taneja, MD, Travel Spirit International, will continue to hold the post of Hon. Secretary, and the post of Hon. Treasurer has been re-assigned to Vikram Madhok, MD, Abercrombie & Kent. The association also elected its Executive Committee for the term 2017-19. Under the Active Government Category, Rashmi Verma and Suman Billa, Joint Secretary, Ministry of Tourism, Government of India will hold the post, while Ravneet Kaur, CMD, ITDC and Sanjiv Garg, Additional Member T&C, Ministry of Railways will be EC members under the Associate Government Category. Pankaj Srivastava, Director-Commercial, Air India, has been elected EC member under the International Carrier category. Under the Domestic Carrier category, Ragini Chopra, VP, Jet Airways and M.P. Mall, CMD, IRCTC have been elected. The four posts for Travel Agents/Tour Operators category have been given to Vikram Madhok, J.S. Taneja, Snirmol Ghosh, Director, Indo Asia Tours and Anoop Kanuga, Director, Bathija Travels. Under the Hotels/ Associate Hotels category, the three members are: Renu Basu, VP, Indian Hotels; Arjun Sharma, MD, Select Holiday Resorts; and Rohit Arora, GM, Apeejay Surendra Park Hotel. SanJeet will be an EC member under the Sustaining Member category.

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Promote sustainable tourism: Kannanthanam

Emphasising on the importance of sustainable tourism at CII’s Annual Tourism Summit, Alphons Kannanthanam, Minister of State (I/C) for Tourism, said that it is important for tourism to boom in India and be sustainable at the same time. Citizens need to keep their country clean, so that tourists get to explore a habitable environment, he added. The summit, held at ITC Maurya, New Delhi, focused its agenda on the year 2017 being the International Year of Sustainability. Other dignitaries present at the summit included Deep Kalra, Founder & Chief Executive Officer, MakeMy Trip; H.E., Jozef Drofenik, Ambassador, Embassy of Slovenia; Arjun Sharma, Co-Chairman, CII National Committee on Tourism & Hospitality and Managing Director, Select Group; and Mandip Singh Soin, Founder & Managing Director, Ibex Expeditions and Honorary Founding President, Ecotourism Society of India (ESOI).

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