Category Archives: Agents

Thomas Cook’s domestic business witnesses 35-40% growth

Thomas Cook (India) has said that its domestic business is growing at a robust pace of 35-40 per cent, and its share in the total revenue is expected to rise in the next few years. The outbound business currently contributes 80 per cent and is growing at 20-25 per cent, while domestic travel generates the rest, but over the next two-three years, the revenue ratio is expected to change, Romil Pant, Vice President, Thomas Cook (India) said. “I think the share of domestic business is ideally expected to move up to 30 per cent from 20 per cent now in the next two to three years, looking at the growth rate,” he said. Pant was in Kolkata to promote special regional Bengali tours in the city during the Durga Puja festivities. In these tours, managers will use the local dialect, and more such tours in other languages are also planned, such as Assamese, Pant said. Deepening reach is another step to maintain growth momentum, he said, adding, “In the next two to three quarters, the total number of exclusive outlets will touch 300. The major focus would be to expand in Tier-II and tier-III cities,” he said. Pant said about 60-70 per cent of the tours are in the packaged tour segment, while the rest are customised. Customised leisure travel has got traction in recent years and is growing at 30-40 per cent. Source: PTI  

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BLS launches Italy visa centre in Singapore

BLS International has entered into a contract with Ministry of Foreign Affairs Italy and commenced operation of processing Italy visa applications in Singapore. The centre will also extend premium services such as Premium Lounge, photocopy, courier, SMS alert and photo booth for the convenience of applicants. Shikhar Aggarwal, Joint Managing Director, BLS International said, “The new Joint VAC for Ministry of Foreign Affairs Italy in Singapore, is equipped with state-of-the-art technology to strengthen the visa processing services for citizens. Looking at the growing trend of emerging popularity of Schengen areas as a new tourist destination, the centre will cater to the ever-increasing volumes of visa applications for Italy and Spain – the two most preferred destinations for Schengen entry.” The application centre is centrally located and has well-trained staff to handle applicants’ queries while the website is user-friendly and informative. The centre is equipped with state-of-the-art facilities and has the capability to service other Schengen countries.  

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Spain’s Logitravel group joint ventures with Thailand’s CBS Travel Asia

Logitravel Group of Spain and Thailand’s CBS Travel Asia have agreed for a joint venture that will give the European group a foothold in Southeast Asia. Logitravel has 12 offices worldwide and its first expansion in Asia will establish its 13th base to sell both inbound and outbound travel between Asia and Europe. In the long term, the company plans expansion to other major markets in Asia. The partnership will also help to build and grow the network opf two companies to new levels of success. The Thailand-based DMC will gain access to foreign markets covered by the Spanish Group. It will also help in offering added value for its B2B customers through the group’s technology and global distribution network. CBS Travel Asia will operate as the regional partner of Smyrooms, the Logitravel Group bed bank.  The joint venture will involve the integration of CBS Travel Asia’s full travel content for distribution through the group’s XML platform to more than 1,000 online travel agents, tour operators and B2B partners. Logitravel Group is making a firm commitment to expand its business using Thailand as a regional hub, to extend its footprint to other Asian countries by acquiring a stake in CBS Travel Asia, Financial details were not disclosed, but it is understood that joint venture talks first commenced in early 2017.

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Nijhawan Group appointed as advisor for tourism promotion of Embassy of Uzbekistan in India

Nijhawan Group has been appointed as the Advisor for tourism promotion of Embassy of Uzbekistan in India. Farhod C Arziev, Ambassador of the Republic of Uzbekistan to India, said that they would be working closely with the Nijhawan Group to make Indian travellers aware of the tourism possibilities in Uzbekistan. Ankush Nijhawan, Managing Director, Nijhawan Group, said that their first agenda will be to make the travel trade in India meet and start collaborating with the DMCs in Uzbekistan, as awareness about the destination is foremost. Arziev said that they have already simplified the visa procedure to boost the incoming traffic to Uzbekistan from India. It will also offer e-visa to Indians as well as a five-day visa-free transit in Uzbekistan from July 15, 2018.

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Indian business travellers feel safer in ride-sharing services than in taxis: Carlson Wagonlit Travel

Indian business travellers feel safer in ride-sharing services than in taxis, according to research commissioned by Carlson Wagonlit Travel. More than a half (56%) of the Indian respondents surveyed expressed safety concerns about using taxis when traveling for business, compared with 47% for ride-sharing services. Business travellers in several other newly industrialised countries like Mexico and Brazil also responded similarly. “In cities across the globe, using ride-sharing services has become a way of life,” said Bindu Bhatia, Managing Director – Asia Pacific, Carlson Wagonlit Travel. “The familiar and convenient experience they provide has made them a preferred mode of transport for many business travellers. Still, one continues to hear about safety incidents surrounding ride-sharing services around the world, which might explain in part why some travellers are worried about using them.” Looking at ride-sharing, 56% of Asia Pacific women feel somewhat nervous versus 38% of men. For taxis, that is 48% and 35% respectively. Even though ride-sharing is associated with the younger generation, the findings show that these travellers are more concerned about personal safety. Millennials, in all regions, are the most worried, followed by gen X travelers and baby boomers. In Asia Pacific, half of the millennial travelers are very/somewhat concerned when using a rideshare service, followed by 44% of gen X and 35% of boomers. In the Americas, the percentages are 47% for millennials, 42% for gen X and 29% for boomers.

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Amadeus conducts tourism training at University of Kashmir

With an aim to augment the career prospects of students in the field of tourism, Amadeus India recently conducted a training session for students at the University of Kashmir. The training was undertaken in collaboration with Travel Agents Association of India (TAAI) to introduce and prepare tomorrow’s budding professionals for the job market. Rakesh Bansal, CEO, Amadeus India, said, “Kashmir is one of the most preferred tourist destinations with thousands of travellers visiting throughout the year. We are trying to impart job training to students which will prepare them well and open up a lot of avenues when they step into the market for jobs eventually.” Sunil Kumar, President, TAAI said, “This week-long programme of Amadeus to train about 90 students on reservation and ticketing process has been a huge success. The students are now inspired to get actively connected with the growing travel and tourism industry that requires specialised training to meet the ever-increasing demands of the industry. We are delighted to join hands with Amadeus India who have played a valuable role in organising this training for the students of J&K.” As part of the company’s CSR initiative, the training focused on imparting the right skills, aptitude, knowledge and approach by showcasing different models and case scenarios.

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ASI enables to book tickets online through Yatra

Yatra Online has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) for the archaeological researches and protection of the cultural heritage of India.  This MoU will enable overseas and domestic tourists to conveniently book their tickets online for 141 historical monuments, museums and sites in India, such as the Taj Mahal, Qutub Minar, Ajanta and Ellora caves, Red Fort, Sun Temple, all of which fall under the purview of ASI. This move, aimed towards supporting Government of India’s ‘Digital India’ initiative, will facilitate digitisation of ASI’s service offerings, thereby providing fast track access and a world-class e-ticket booking experience to visitors. The partnership with Yatra, the only OTA to provide this facility, will also be significant in promoting tourism and cultural heritage in India. The online booking services comes at no additional cost to a customer. Speaking on the partnership, Dhruv Shringi, Co-Founder & CEO, Yatra.com said, “India has an extraordinary and diverse pool of cultural heritage and footfalls to such destinations are astounding. Therefore, we want to provide a high quality visitor experience, which will empower the visitors (both Indian & International) to book their tickets to these monuments online. In addition to providing online booking services, Yatra will be extending its platform for promoting cultural heritage and featuring all the essential information that a tourist needs, to plan their visits along with a synopsis of the monuments.”

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Europamundo’s pre-sale offers holidays next year for this year’s price

Europamundo Vacations has started a pre-sale offer under which patrons can book for their vacations for 2019-20 at the prices quoted in their brochure for 2018-19 for the corresponding week and month. This means that one can freeze the rates from March 2019 till March 2020 for travel till March 2020 from the company’s 2018-19 catalogue for any destination. The company ensures guaranteed departures on the same day of the week, during the same corresponding month and season of the year.

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Tourism Enterprises collaborates with Hello Asia Travel for Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos & Myanmar

Tourism Enterprises has recently collaborated with a destination management company-Hello Asia Travel to cater to destinations like Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos and Myanmar. The DMC specialises in offering tailor-made itineraries to FITs, GITs, incentive travellers and soft adventure seekers at these destinations. Tourism Enterprises has been promoting outbound destinations like Greece , Morocco , Bulgaria , Romania ,Serbia , Macedonia  Dubai and Sri Lanka for more than five years. Indian Outbound market is increasing day by day and people want to explore more and more Tourism Enterprises have also opted this pattern and now they  have joined hands with Hello Asia Travel headed by Kelly Bui (President and Chief executive Officer ) & Tony Nguyen  (Vice President of product Development)  who will take care the Indian market.

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Private Safaris Southern Africa appoints representation agency in India

Private Safaris Southern Africa, a leading destination management company based in South Africa and Namibia, has recently appointed The Strategy Store as its representative in India. Talking about the appointment, Monika Iuel, CEO, Private Safaris Southern Africa says, “The Private Safaris brand has always enjoyed a healthy support from the Indian market. By partnering with The Strategy Store, and through their excellent relationships and reputation, we will no doubt improve our footprint even further. We look forward to the presence our new partnership with The Strategy Store will bring us.” Commenting on the development, Sherry Varma, Founder, The Strategy Store said, “We have a very emotional connection to South Africa, and we are extremely happy to be assigned the task of handling marketing and sales for Private Safaris Southern Africa in India. Private Safaris’ competitive packages and quality of services will help us to develop and multiply their market share in India. We are very thankful to Private Safaris for this opportunity and are very excited to be part of the team.” Private Safaris arranges all aspects of destination management services in Southern Africa for FITs, groups, business and leisure.

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