Category Archives: Cruises

Riya Marine Travel continues to do business amidst pandemic

Riya Group’s Marine Travel division has seen tremendous growth in the past few months. Manoj Samuel, Director, Riya Group, says, “This is the only unit which has not gone down since the pandemic. We do marine charters all over the world. Riya Marine Travel has been facilitating travel for seafarers since 16 years, offering services like special airfares for seamen, visa, insurance, hotel accommodations near ports, calling cards, etc for crew working on offshore rigs, commercial vessels, and cruise ships.”

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Ark makes headway in non-cruise space, acquires Outbound Konnections

Ark Travels, a B2B company specialising in cruise representation business, has penetrated further into the non-cruising space with the acquisition of Outbound Konnections, spearheaded by Anjum Lokhandwala, who will continue as its Director. Kishan Biyani, MD, Ark Travels, says, “I felt this was the right time to enter into the non-cruise space. Along with Ark Travels, we can have a bouquet of products besides cruises, Club Med Resorts and Europamundo Vacations to offer to their B2B network without increasing overheads.”

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Celestyal adds mid-size cruise vessel with 789 cabins

Celestyal Cruises, that sails to the Greek Islands and the Eastern Mediterranean, has added to its fleet the Costa NeoRomantica from Costa Cruises. Built in 1993 and extensively refurbished in 2012, the 1,800-guest ship has 789 cabins, 132 of which feature balconies, as well as a variety of dining and entertainment venues, bars and lounges, two pools, a gym and a panoramic spa. Celestyal Cruises’ CEO, Chris Theophilides, says, “While Covid-19 has brought a temporary pause to our operations, it is important that we look to the future with optimism and continue to deliver on our strategic plan to grow the business and enhance the Celestyal experience through investment. This mid-size cruise vessel is ideally suited to our business model.” Details of the ship’s delivery and deployment will be announced at a later date. Celestyal Cruises’ existing 2021 and 2022 itineraries that were recently launched remain unchanged.

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Dream Cruises is first cruise line to resume operation after shutdown due to pandemic

Genting Cruise Lines has announced the restart of operations for Dream Cruises with Explorer Dream operating two and three-night ‘Taiwan Island-Hopping’ itineraries beginning from 26 July 2020. It will depart from Keelung and calling at Penghu, Matzu and Kinmen islands. The ship has undergone deep cleaning after observing strict quarantine measures for her crew.

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BLS Lake Cruise Switzerland begins operations; awaits Indian travellers

Switzerland, currently being regarded as one of the safest countries to travel to, has announced the opening of tourism businesses with cautious optimism. In light of the same, BLS Navigation, that owns and operates boats on Lake Thun and Lake Brienz in the famous Interlaken region of Switzerland, has announced selective resumption of operations for tourists. Represented and promoted by AccessIndiaReps in the Indian market, BLS Lake Cruises in Interlaken have become a favourite for Indians in the past few years. “All boat journeys here are included in the Swiss Travel System Pass free of cost for individual travellers, and we offer great prices for groups,” says Ashish Saran, Founder & CEO, AccessIndiaReps. Kaspar Stettler, Head of Sales, BLS Navigation, adds, “We are happy to resume our Interlaken Lake Cruise operations with necessary precautions and are operating our boats from various locations popular with tourists and local visitors, including restaurant services on the boats. We are positive that cross-border travel will open up from other parts of Europe and the world, and we resume full services soon. We love Indian tourists and have been seeing good numbers in the past years and are extremely hopeful that the Indian market will recover soon and we will see our Indian friends again.”

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Genting Cruise Lines launches new B2B App in India, introduces enhanced health & hygiene measures

Genting Cruise Lines has launched a new B2B app geared toward the company’s travel trade and business partners to provide a wealth of information, all in the palm of their hands. The “GCL India” app available on both Android and Apple devices shall deliver a comprehensive platform for business partners to access a range of helpful tools including itineraries, brochures and presentations, cruise calendars, photos and videos and important news. The goal of the app is to streamline information delivery and to speed up the turnaround time of providing essential materials to their end consumers.

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Jalesh Cruises partners with travel companies for industry-first API integration

Jalesh Cruises has launched an industry-first API integration with leading travel companies Akbar Travels, Riya Travels, and Jagsons Travel. Through this partnership, the Jalesh Cruises API will integrate with the travel agencies existing systems by providing them with a convenient and seamless experience and update on a real-time basis. This will be done by connecting the data streams and allowing travel partners to access products, services on their portal, by corresponding the data flow across the connected supply chain.

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Analytics firm VIDEC launches global travel staffing barometer

Boutique advisory and analytics firm VIDEC has launched a Global Travel Staffing Barometer, an online resource to monitor the impact of COVID-19 coronavirus on the travel, tourism and hospitality industry. The free-to-use tracker offers industry insights on the state of terminations, furloughs and pay-cuts, across industry categories and countries, collated from various sources and updated on daily basis. Virendra Jain, Cofounder and CEO, VIDEC, says, “The travel industry is crumbling before our eyes with more than half a million lay-offs in less than a month. Amid the global spread of the pandemic, companies of all shapes and sizes – from the billion-dollar valued to start-ups – are trimming costs, disbanding, and letting go off their most precious asset, the workforce. The Global Travel Staffing Barometer quantifies the discharged staff and aims to become the central hub for tracking the loss of human resources, and in time offer the first glimpses for the road to recovery for the travel industry.” According to this tracker, more than 500,000 workers in the travel, tourism and hospitality industries have been furloughed in the last three weeks.

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