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EDITOR’S NOTE

Going Beyond...

A

whole new world out there is waiting to be experienced and explored. 2019-2020 and beyond will see some interesting developments emerging in the travel space. The word experiential tourism is predicted to be viewed with a whole new meaning. Its not just about exploring exotic destinations, like the Arctic and more, it is also about experiencing new frontiers for your senses like staying in underwater hotels, snow igloos stays and more. Space technology is getting all the more sophisticated. In 2019, NASA is scheduled to start the construction of Lunar space station, which means space tourism may soon be a reality in the near future. Wellness and therapeutic health holidays are predicted to increase in popularity. Food and gourmet tours, will get all the more refined and refreshed, wherein cuisine experiences will take people closer to the heart of the culture and ethos of a particular place. It will not only be restricted to the palate but cuisine will get people closer to cultures and crafts. Further, the discerning traveller, will slowly get to the roots, live with locals longer and enjoy their beverage in an estate or plantation, along with enjoying their refreshers in an upmarket lounge or cafe. Travel for the youth would be more about studying beyond the books and feeling the destination in all its glory. The youth is predicted to save more to travel

“ Budget eco stays and glamping will thrive together.Ease of travel will be in demand.AI will make further inroads in the travel space”

more. Education on the move, active and live, is predicted to be in demand in the future. The travellers of the future will also be more conscious of the places they visit with respect to the environmental, social, cultural, political scenarios of places they travel. Seeking life changing journeys will be the future calling. Refined and redefined, the travel space will be viewed with a brand new approach by the future tourists. Budget eco stays and glamping will thrive together. Ease of travel will be in demand and the influence of technology will only increase in the travel sector. AI will make further inroads in the travel space and the consumers will demand services backed with AI. Shorter trips, weekend breaks will only get more attractive with time. Festival tourism will also get into the limelight, wherein people would like to partake and experience world famous festivals and events, be it the Hornbill festival in India, the Carnival in Brazil or similar. The earth is not enough, tourism is ready to take you to space. Your travel journey is your personal choice, be it via road, rail or the rocket, the call is yours.

REEMA LOKESH Editor editorial.etw@expressindia.com

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December 2018


CONTENTS SPOTLIGHT Vol 13 No 11 December 2018 Pages 42

29

Chairman of the Board Viveck Goenka

Sr. Vice President - BPD Neil Viegas

REIMAGINE REMARKETING Adobe expalins how using email and analytics can gain customer loyalty and executive buy-in

Asst. Vice President - BPD Harit Mohanty

Editor

IN FOCUS

Reema Lokesh*

31

Assistant Editor Steena Joy

DESIGN Assistant Art Director Pravin Temble Chief Designer Prasad Tate Senior Designer Rekha Bisht Graphics Designer Gauri Deorukhkar Senior Artist Ratilal Ladani DIGITAL TEAM Head of Internet

THE DYNAMICS OF DESTINATION WEDDINGS (24-28) Destination weddings are getting finer and wedding specialists are only seeing further growth in this exclusive enterprise. Few tour operators and wedding planners have analysed the market right and have found business sense in getting people hitched

MARKETS

EVENT ROUNDUP

Viraj Mehta SCHEDULING & COORDINATION Arvind Mane

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TAAI, TAFI URGE AIR INDIA TO RECONSIDER DECISION TO OFFER INVENTORY ONLY ON SELECT GDS

14

VISIT.BRUSSELS MEETS WITH TRAVEL TRADE IN MUMBAI AND DELHI

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AIRBUS BIZLAB SIGNS MOU TO HELP SET UP INNOVATION CENTRE IN KERALA

Photo Editor

RESPONSIBLE TOURISM, KEY TO TRAVEL DECISIONS: ABTA REPORT ABTA’s Travel Trends 2019 report, released recently, highlighted that responsible tourism is now becoming an increasingly significant consideration when booking a holiday

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'RCI IS PLANNING A 30 PER CENT INCREASE IN RESORTS BY END 2020': SABINA CHOPRA

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THAILAND TARGETS MORE INDIAN TOURISTS WITH VISA WAIVER

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INDIA IS PIONEER MARKET FOR LUFTHANSA CITY CENTRE CONCEPT DIVERSIFICATION PROGRAMME

Sandeep Patil

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QATAR LAUNCHES FIRST GLOBAL DESTINATION CAMPAIGN

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VISTARA EXTENDS LONGSTANDING DISTRIBUTION AGREEMENT WITH AMADEUS

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INDIAN TOURIST ARRIVALS TO GREECE INCREASES BY 119%

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MARKETING Prabhas Jha Debnarayan Dutta CIRCULATION Mohan Varadakar

GOING BEYOND BOUNDARIES IN KUNMING True to its theme, Tourism Beyond Boundaries, TAAI’s 65th annual convention crossed the India border (just two and a half hours from Kolkata) to Kunming, China

PRODUCTION General Manager B R Tipnis Manager Bhadresh Valia

Express TravelWorld® POSTAL REGD. NO. MCS/163/2016 – 18

CONSERVATION

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RNI Reg. No.MAHENG/2005/15993 Printed by The Indian Express (P) Ltd. and published by Ms Vaidehi Thakar on behalf of The Indian Express Press, Plot No. EL-208, TTC Industrial Area, Mahape, Navi Mumbai 400710 and Published from Express Towers, 1st Floor, Nariman Point, Mumbai - 400021. (Editorial & Administrative Offices: Express

P09 : EDITOR’S NOTE P37 : MOVEMENTS

Towers, 1st Floor, Nariman Point, Mumbai – 400021)

P38 : WEEKEND

MUZIRIS PADDLE 2019: AN AWARENESS ABOUT RIVER CONSERVATION The paddling event promotes the usage of our rivers for recreational usage and creates a connection to the river with youngsters and tourists

Copyright © 2018 The Indian Express (P) Limited. All rights reserved throughout the world. Reproduction in any manner, electronic or otherwise, in whole or in part, without prior written permission is prohibited. *Responsible for selection of news under PRB Act


IN THE NEWS

'INFRASTRUCTURE AND CONNECTIVITYIS THE KEY FOR THE SUCCESS OFBUDDHISTTOURISM IN INDIA' Dr Kaulesh Kumar, secretary general, Association of Buddhist Tour Operators - ABTO and convener International Buddhist Travel Mart (IBTM) 2018, shares his views on the potential of Buddhist tourism and the primary focus on IBTM. By Reema Lokesh How would you define the evolution of Buddhist tourism in India? As per the ex secretary Ministry of Tourism, Govt. of India said that Buddhist Tourism is a Diamond Triangle, with unlimited scope. According to me if we can provide quality ground arrangement services, upgrade infrastructure, ensure effective marketing, then this niche area of tourism will only see unprecedented growth as part of a tourism product for inbound tourism. What is the plan and mission of ABTO? Our aim is to spread the

voice of the potential of Buddhist tourism and we also aim to unite, preserve, conserve, protect and promote Buddhist monuments and culture around the world specially in Asia Pacific region. This is the aim and objective of ABTO. How involved is the government to push the cause forward? Ministry of tourism, government of India, state tourism boards of India, countries like Nepal, Sri Lanka, Bhutan, Vietnam and national & international organisations like IATO, NATTA etc are always ready to support. Nepal Government is

tourism sector. How will the initiative help local DMCs and operators? ABTO is combination of stakeholders, scholars, monks, etc apart from DMCs. If we all work toward providing quality services then everyone will be benefited. ABTO will provide proper guideline/information for all to benefit from.

Dr Kaulesh Kumar

working proactively with us to further the cause of this niche

What are the primary challenges, which this circuit and niche tourism sector is facing? Infrastructure and connectivity is the main problem in the circuit.

Can you throw some light on the upccoming convention? Within three years ABTO is playing a very important role with the MoT, state tourism, national organisations like IATO, international organisations like NATTA, IBC, etc. ABTO delegates and members are all over in Asian countries but never meet in one place. Main aim of this convention is to bring all stakeholders on a common platform, under one umbrella. We all need to work in harmony to reach the ultimate goal of encouraging Buddhist tourism, both national and international.

TAAI,TAFI urge Air India to reconsider decision to offer inventory only on select GDS ETW Staff Mumbai AIR INDIA has sent shockwaves through the travel trade in India with the announcement of offering its inventory solely through its select GDS and disconnecting its inventory of another GDS, due to which the distribution capability of the airline may be reduced by about 40 per cent. Two of India’s leading travel industry associations, Travel Agents Association of India (TAAI) and Travel Agents Federation of India (TAFI) represented by its officers, on November 5, 2018 had a detailed discussion with Air India’s senior management and conveyed that this decision of going exclusive on a GDS would be detrimental to the airline and this

must be urgently reviewed. The two associations said they are keen that Air India must not suffer any losses that would further damage the health of the airline. The senior management promised to revert back in a day. The next day the associations received a phone call to inform that there will be no change in Air India’s stand. Sunil Kumar, president, TAAI said, “Air India has been reeling under tremendous financial challenges and instead of finding ways to increase its seat sales via an easy access through GDS channels, this move by the national carrier is shocking. The response given by Air India is that this would save its distribution costs. It is a surprising decision since the airline wants to save a mere hundred rupees or

two as distribution costs and lose thousands on loss of seat sale. In our opinion, the airline is threatened with a huge financial loss.” Adding to this, Praveen Chugh, president, TAFI said, “This move has been taken by the airline without any prior discussions with the agents who are promoting Air India. As a national carrier, Air India has a wider social responsibility to protect and act in the interest of the Indian travellers and small and medium enterprises. It seems from recent articles in the media that even former management of Air India were opposed to the move to a single Distribution System to avoid this threat of financial loss. Air India has completely ignored the support they have been getting from the

agency community who have invested extensively and continued to patronise the national carrier.” Many travel agencies in India have been selling a large share of Air India seats on the GDS with whom Air India has disconnected its domestic inventory. For these agencies including those who do not have access or frequently sell the airline seats on the GDS preferred by Air India, it is quite evident that selling Air India would not be an easy proposition and thus they may opt for other airlines for their customers. Chugh stated, “For several established agencies, usage of GDS is governed by Global Agreements they have entered into and thus switching over or training their staff to get used to this limited GDS access will be a difficult option to cope

up with.” Airlines have interline agreements and agents book multipleairlines in one booking which has many different connections. “With different airlines offering their inventory on specific GDS, the seamless services offered by agents will be affected. GDS companies are not evenly distributed across India nor will they be able to service the travel trade in a uniform pattern,” said Kumar. The aviation sector is already reeling under the pressures of the high fuel prices and unfavourable exchange rates. Under these circumstances the move by Air India, seems to be one-sided and will affect its overall sales in the long run opined the two associations. Both TAAI and TAFI hope that Air India will reconsider its stand.

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IN THE NEWS

'RCI IS PLANNING A30 PER CENTINCREASE IN RESORTS BYEND 2020' In an exclusive interview, Sabina Chopra, managing director, RCI India speaks about the timeshare industry in India and why the concept can appeal to the millennial traveller. By Steena Joy What challenges has the timeshare industry in India faced over the last two years? How does India compare with the worldwide industry? Customers around the world are turning to vacation ownership as their preferred option for holidays and vacations. More than 16 million households own vacation interval products at 5,316 resorts, in over 120 countries. There are nearly 500,000 timeshare units with an average resort size of 94. North America remains the global leader with nearly halfthe-pie, and approximately two million owners. Europe is the second most dominant region for vacation ownership, with approximately 22 per cent of global figures. In India, timeshare has grown from single resort hotel to chain of hotels and resorts providing consumers with the opportunity to buy vacation time in any of their properties worldwide which typically offer an array of amenities. Timeshare resort base has grown by over 50 per cent over the last six years showing great potential and promise. As per All India Resort Development Association (AIRDA), over 5 lakh families have subscribed to timeshare in India and the estimated market exceeds 3.5 million. This growth can be attributed to the consistently growing middle class and increasing disposable income. The Indian travel space too has undergone several changes and advanced through time to what it is today. More people are travelling than ever before, they are not doing only annual vacations, but also short vacations such as long weekends and

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seeking unforgettable experiences. What India specific strategy has RCI adopted to grow the membership? Over the last few years, RCI has been focusing on member growth and satisfaction by providing solutions that make travel experience with RCI truly world class. In line with RCI’s objective, we recently launched a new brand campaign in India, ‘The Map Is Yours’. With special emphasis on encouraging travellers to explore a world of new possibilities and saying yes to new experiences, through this campaign, we are working towards increasing the number of transactions per member while giving our affiliate partners a great opportunity to engage with their prospective customers. The three month long digital campaign is running on the official RCI website and across high-impact social media platforms like Facebook and LinkedIn, building awareness and creating high engagement with members. We also undertook a survey in partnership with KantarIMRB to get some insights into the timeshare space to support the concept in India backed by credible consumer understandings. It examined the motivation behind taking a holiday and the factors for location choosing and identified a significant gap in holiday satisfaction rates between timeshare owners and non-owners. The survey findings helped RCI highlight a clear opportunity for new players to look at timeshare as a viable business opportunity.We are strategically working to

fly-by night operators. Your comments. The purchase of a timeshare is a lifestyle purchase and often an emotional decision. Hence, it is imperative that prospective timeshare buyers must be vigilant and educate themselves with right information and purchase timeshares from AIRDA accredited resorts only. Also, it makes immense sense for resorts to affiliate with AIRDA and get the AIRDA creditability stamp. Sabina Chopra

grow the market in India for our members and are increasing affiliations with different resorts across the country which has not only widened our presence but also provide our existing and potential members choices of high-quality properties in premium holiday destinations offering unique experiences. In India, we have been expanding our portfolio to grow the market around India for our members and have worked tirelessly towards increasing affiliations with different resorts across the country like Clarks Holidays, Ramada Kumbhalgarh, Hill Stream Resort in Dehradun, The Global Family Home, Leh, Ananta Spa and Resorts in Udaipur, ‘Nest n Mist’ resort in Waynad, JC Residency Resorts in Kodaikanal and Madurai, Sterling La Vida Varca, Goa and Arie Lagoon, Tisara Villas in Sri Lanka and Hondaafushi Island Resort in Maldives. The industry is not a very regulated one, resulting in many

Do you think the timeshare concept will appeal to the millennial traveller/Gen Z segment? Millennial travellers are wildly different from older generations and have different expectations for their vacation. They are looking for experiences, whether natural, culinary or artistic. Their demand for memorable moments and activities has shaped one of the biggest shifts in travel trend, personalisation. Every traveller has different interests: some are into camping, others are into staying at boutique hotels, while some may prefer luxury resorts. Some travellers like to discover the culinary culture of a country in Michelin starred restaurants, while others might prefer street food. With the changing dynamics of the travel industry, timeshare is showing encouraging signs of growth as it offers travellers a unique, personalised, immersive holiday experience where everything is taken care by the resort in the most costeffective way making it a good travel choice. The visible increase in number of membership sign ups in timeshare mar-

ket is a strong indication of shifting trends. The younger generation is realising the value of owning a timeshare and are eyeing it as a viable holiday investment. In addition, through timeshare, the new-age travellers can consider newer holiday experiences in offbeat locations, and no longer have to narrow down the options to popular or main stream destinations. In fact, travellers taking to lesser known locations in exchange of mainstream destinations rank high on the search list of timeshare customers. Traditional attractions and old buildings and museums do not suffice anymore. Jungle resorts, ski resorts, cruises, beaches, adventure, golf resorts, heritage, casinos and gaming are all on the menu. Future roadmap for RCI India? The RCI portfolio of affiliated resorts in India now includes over 160 properties and RCI is planning a 30 per cent increase in resorts by the end of 2020. We will continue to strategically expand our footprint in and around India with more resorts in Andamans, Sri Lanka, Maldives, Bhutan, Nepal and many more to provide high quality resorts and cost effective options for Indian members to vacation abroad. We have more than 4300 resorts globally available for our members in 110 countries.With the rapidly changing dynamics of the travel industry, loyalty built in through understanding customer needs has never been more important and we are committed to growth in terms of adding more members across target segments.


IN THE NEWS

Qatar launches first Global Destination Campaign ETW Staff Mumbai QATAR recently launched its first global destination campaign aimed at positioning the Arabian Gulf country as an attractive destination for authentic and bespoke experiences. Under the tagline ‘Qatar. Qurated For You’, the campaign brings to life Qatar’s focus on tailored visitor experiences that celebrate its heritage, and will be rolled out across 15 existing and targeted priority markets. The campaign's launch comes at an exciting period of growth and development for Qatar's tourism sector. Just a few weeks earlier, Qatar Tourism Authority was converted into the Qatar National Tourism Council (QNTC). The new governance structure paves the way for the implementation of key initiatives across the public and private sectors to develop solid tourism infrastructure and deliver exceptional visitor experiences. Both the revised governance model and the global promotion campaign are critical components of the sector's newest strategy launched in 2017 (The

Next Chapter of the National Tourism Sector Strategy). These foundational developments are further complemented by the country's revised visitor visa policies which have earned it the ranking as the most open country in the Middle East - and the 8th most open in the world - according to UNWTO’s recently updated visa openness rankings. Rashed AlQurese, chief marketing & promotion officer, QNTC, added, "Qurated is more than an advertising campaign: we’ve closely examined what Qatar offers as a destination to bring into sharp focus the essence of the Qatar experience, and how it can be tailored to each of our visitor segments." He added, "We look forward to bringing the spirit of Qurated to life, on people’s television screens, in airports around the world, and eventually here in Qatar where the world is welcomed to experience our authentic heritage and forward-looking vision."To deliver bespoke endto-end experiences to our visitors while achieving true impact for the industry, QNTC is partnering with some of the world's most popular travel platforms

such as Booking.com, TripAdvisor among others, so that prospective visitors can curate their next visit to Qatar from the moment they read about the destination, through to making reservations and enjoying the destination's various cultural and natural attractions. Running across print, TV and digital platforms in eight different languages, Qurated will also leverage partnerships with global television networks such as CNN International, Al Jazeera, BeIN, Digiturk and Sky TV. Through captivating visuals that offer glimpses of Qatar’s authentic tourism offerings, the campaign is designed to make Qatar a top-of-mind destination. Meanwhile, Cox & Kings India is now promoting Qatar as the group’s new preferred destination. The marketing and promotion campaign comes as part of a strategic partnership with Qatar National Tourism Council (QNTC) aimed at boosting the destination's profile to attract luxury, business and independent travellers to visit Qatar. Nearly 260 Indian travel agents visited Qatar to attend a five-day training camp.AlQurese commented, "We are pleased to be

partnering with Cox & Kings group for the destination's first ever integrated campaign in India. Qatar is an easily accessible destination within a few hours from most Indian cities making it an attractive destination for travelers looking for short city getaways or a convenient stopover when heading further West." He added, “India is a priority market for us and we look forward to welcoming Indian visitors in Qatar to discover our destination's authentic experiences all while enjoying our famed Arabian hospitality."Qatar is an easily accessible destination within

a few hours from most Indian cities making it an attractive destination for travellers looking for short city getaways or a convenient stopover when heading further West. Every week, there are 176 flights connecting Indian cities to Doha offered by Qatar's award-winning national airline, Qatar Airways as well as IndiGo, Jet Airways and Air India Express. Since January of this year, Qatar has welcomed more than 335,922 Indian visitors till October, representing a 25 per cent increase compared to the same period last year.

Skål International opens new club in Srinagar ETW Staff Mumbai SKÅL International India recently opened its 12th Club under the name of Skål International Srinagar. This club will comprise of members from Jammu and Ladakh as well. The club was formed with 21 members and the founder president of the club is Ibrahim Siah and secretary Nasir Shah. Chief guest for

the event was Syed Abid Rasheed Shah, district development commissioner. Saleem Baig, Mahmood Shah and Rakesh Gupta were the other dignatories. The event was well attended by the Skal India National Board and the all India club presidents / representatives at ITC Fortune Heevan. Club members consists of hoteliers, travel and tour operators and adventure specialists.

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IN THE NEWS

visit.brussels meets with travel trade in Mumbai and Delhi ETW Staff Mumbai visit.brussels team from Brussels were on a week-long mission in India with the objective to interact with over 130 trade and media partners from the travel fraternity. The two city event covering Mumbai and Delhi was taken as an opportunity to talk about the tourism offerings that this European capital can offer to Indian outbound travellers. The exclusive networking session in Mumbai was attended by The consul general of the Kingdom of Belgium, Peter Huyghebaert as the chief guest. While, the ambassador of Belgium to India H.E. François Delhaye graced the event in Delhi. The visit.brussels team led by Anousjka Schmidt, foreign markets manager, visit.brussels; Pieter Callebaut, business development leisure, visit.brussels and Ellona Pereira, account director, visit.brussels - India, gave an indepth overview of the booming tourism industry during the networking evening in Mumbai and Delhi. During the B2B interactions, the European partners enlightened the travel trade partners about why Brussels is an ideal getaway destination for scenic wonders and attractions, Brusselicious experiences and business pursuit. Schmidt, while addressing the gathering, spoke about the importance of the India market for Brussels’ tourism industry and briefed travel partners on the various attractions in the capital. “Brussels is growing to become an important “go-to” destination in all the European itineraries. From January to July in 2018, Indian arrival to Brussels grew by over 14 per cent in comparison the same period last year. While a significant rise of over 21 per cent in the number of nights spend in Brussels by Indians has been observed,” she added.Pereira commented, “India is a growing and

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promising market. Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai, Bengaluru, Jaipur are the important feeder markets we focused on during our recently conducted roadshows and trade events and in December will also cover Kolkata and Ahmedabad. Hyderabad, Pune

and some Tier II cities will be included in our target list next calendar year. Keeping in line with our objectives to further enhance the brand awareness of Brussels, we are undergoing a series of marketing activities to strengthen its

engagement with the domestic trade and media. We would like to ensure that every Indian traveller experiences Brussels and remembers the cool capital of Europe forever.” The compact nature of the country and high volume of visi-

tor attractions and activities make Brussels a perfect getaway destination for tourists in India and beyond. It lets visitors discover their passion in culture, shopping, festivals, adventure or even make a love affair with much famous chocolates.


IN THE NEWS

Thailand targets more Indian tourists with visa waiver

Sarova Hotels,Resorts & Game Lodges, Kenya conducts four-city interactive workshop in India ETW Staff Mumbai

ETW Staff Mumbai THAILAND is all geared up to capitalise on the upcoming festive season; the tourism board has recently introduced some attractive scheme and offers to ensure maximum footfalls from India and other countries to Thailand. This year Thailand has already recorded 919,130 tourist arrivals from India a YO-Y increase of 13.24 per cent. Recently the government granted a visa-on-arrival fee waiver for tourists from 20 countries. From November 15, 2018, to January 13, 2019, citizens of Andora, Bulgaria, Bhutan, China including Taiwan, Cyprus, Ethiopia, Fiji, India, Kazakhstan, Latvia, Lithuania, Maldives, Malta, Mauritius, Papua New Guinea, Romania, San Marino, Saudi Arabia, Ukraine

This year Thailand has already recorded 919,130 tourist arrivals from India and Uzbekistan will be exempted from the 2,000 Baht visa-on-arrival fee for the purpose of touring in Thailand not more than 15 days. Tourism Authority of Thailand now launches Amazing Thailand Grand Sale ‘Passport Privilege’ campaign during the same period. Tourism Authority of Thailand gives delightful experiences in shopping and using

services for foreign tourists who come to Thailand during November 15, 2018 – January 15, 2019. The campaign will help tourists to increase buying power on a variety of products and services from leading service providers. Furthermore tourists travelling to Thailand (arriving at Suvarnabhumi and Don Muang Airports) can now avail of E Visa on arrival. The Nation Immigration Bureau acting commissioner Pol MajGeneral Surachate Hakpal officially launched the E-Visa on Arrival (E-VOA) system that is expected to cut visa processing time to as little as one minute. Surachate presided over a ceremony to launch the new system, which has been used on trial basis at Suvarnabhumi and Don Muang airports since November 15. The launch ceremony was held at Suvarnabhumi International Airport.

SAROVA HOTELS, Resort & Game Lodges, the largest indigenous collection of hotels in East Africa successfully conducted its four-city workshop in the Delhi, Mumbai, Bengaluru and Ahmedabad recently. Representatives of Sarova Hotels, Resort & Game Lodges were present and gave detailed product presentations on the group’s properties across Kenya. The delegation also interacted with the agents and shared insights on how to promote Sarova Hotels & Game Lodges to Indian leisure travellers and MICE groups. The product presentation was followed by a gala reception. Kenya and India enjoy warm relations, which has steadily grown year by year in both scope and depth and spans many different areas of cooperation. The tourism exchange between both the countries has gone upward with Kenya emerging as a hotspot for safaris, MICE, and leisure tourism. According to figures released by the ministry of tourism on the state of Kenyan tourism in 2017, international arrivals hit 1.47 million in 2017, up from 1.34 million the previous year. The Indian market contributed to 6.2 per cent of these arrivals, as the fourth largest source market; behind the United States of America, United Kingdom

Selina Dima

and Uganda. Uganda only topped the Indian arrivals by 0.2 per cent. “Sarova has been a well-known brand in terms of luxury, cuisine and the quality of services it has to offer for all travel segments be it leisure, MICE or wedding groups. International arrivals have been on a steady growth since 2015, and the Indian market has been one of the fastest growing source markets. Our four-city roadshow in India gives us a better standing in the industry in tapping into this source market,” says Selina Dima, travel trade manager, global sales, Sarova Hotels and Resorts, Kenya. Sarova Hotels has a keen understanding of social and cultural nuances of India that helps them to curate services tailored for guests from the Indian subcontinent.India is one of Kenya’s leading trade partners and a number of Indian companies are using Kenya as a base to grow in the region.

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IN THE NEWS

Vistara extends longstanding distribution agreement with Amadeus ETW Staff Mumbai VISTARA and Amadeus have renewed a multi-year distribution agreement that guarantees Vistara’s travel agency partners continued access to the airline’s full range of fares and prices through Amadeus. Vistara is the first full service carrier in India to have launched branded fares - packaged combinations of fares, services and flexibility that makes it easier for travelers to pick what best suits their needs. Amadeus Airline Fare Families supports Vistara in making its branded fares, called Vistara Freedom Fares,

available through the Amadeus distribution channel. Amadeus Fare Families will empower travel agents with clear, structured information they need to advise their customers and proactively upsell from one fare family to the other based on each traveler’s needs and preferences. Vistara will also be looking at integrating ancillary services in the future as part of their product offerings. This partnership will enable Vistara to further grow its customer base by continuing to connect to travelers globally through the world’s largest community of travel sellers and buyers. By connecting to

Amadeus’ innovative travel platform, Vistara is able to define and deliver enhanced offers, including rich content, to travel agents and travellers. The airline is also now able to differentiate its travel offers beyond just price, while ensuring that agencies and travellers have all the information at hand in order to make the right purchasing decisions. Sanjiv Kapoor, chief strategy & commercial officer, Vistara, commented, “We are pleased to continue our successful partnership with Amadeus. Travel agencies are a key part of our strategy to serve our customers through the channel of their choice,

both in India and internationally. With the new agreement, we will have access to Amadeus’ global travel agency network which has the widest reach of travellers globally and this is a significant agreement in our growth strategy.” Cyril Tetaz, executive vice president, airlines, Amadeus, Asia Pacific said, “We’re very proud to be able to support Vistara’s growth ever since the start of their operations. With our partnership now including Amadeus Airline Fare Families capabilities, Vistara will be able to differentiate its offers, enabling travel agencies to become better advisors, and empower travelers with the

transparency and customization they deserve. It’s a win-win for everyone.” Vistara joins 440+ airlines, including 110+ LCCs and hybrids, whose fares and merchandising content are bookable in Amadeus.Vistara is one of 66 carriers deploying Amadeus Fare Families in the world’s largest and most diverse travel community, with a total of 80 airlines to have signed up to the solution as of November 2018. Worldwide, 166 airlines have contracted Amadeus’ results-driven merchandising solutions that has been delivering real value to travelers, airlines and travel agents around the globe.

GoUSATVlaunches streaming video app to deliver premium travel content to smartphone users ETW Staff Mumbai THE GOUSA TV app is now available for download on iOS and Android devices around the world. The app harnesses the power of entertainment to inspire overseas travellers to consider a US destination. A first-of-its-kind connected TV network, GoUSA TV is the definitive source to find real, authentic, and on-demand video content about travel experiences in the USA. The app launch is an extension of Brand USA’s strategy to immerse audiences in an entertainment-led point of view of the USA and includes two new programmes: *Ask A Local takes viewers across the United States and its territories, with local residents in each destination sharing

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travel tips. Whether it’s the most rewarding hiking and fishing in Minnesota or the most thrilling rodeos in Texas, “Ask a Local” provides the inspiration travellers can only get by talking with someone who really knows the destination. *SORTEDfood: Lost and Hungry is a series from SORTEDfood, a popular group of British mates looking for exceptional experiences in food. “Lost and Hungry” is a series where they travel across the United States living by two simple rules - they can’t go anywhere or eat anything unless it has been recommended to them.As GoUSA TV’s global audience grows, the app will enable Brand USA to continue strategically curating and distributing video con-

GoUSA TV is the definitive source to find real, authentic, and on-demand video content tent across categories that currently include the Great Outdoors, Road Trips, Food & Drink, and Culture & Events. “Bringing best-in-class travel video to smartphone users around the world is a huge opportunity to engage with audiences in a way no other destination marketing organisation ever has. Audi-

ences today are more engaged than ever before and expect the content they love to be readily available on screens large and small alike. Streaming our content to millions of travellers through just a few taps of their finger is an exciting evolution of our strategy to deliver real, authentic storytelling that can inspire travel to the USA,” said Tom Garzilli, chief marketing officer, Brand USA. GoUSA TV is the premier travel entertainment channel available at viewers’ fingertips where travellers can watch full episodes, documentaries, and films told from the diverse perspectives of real people with no subscription, fees, or logins required. Over the next few months, the app will sample GoUSA TV content through multiple touch

points including sponsorships, consumer and trade public relations, and paid social media advertising. New programmes and episodes will be uploaded weekly and GoUSA TV plans to expand its library to feature more themes and formats, including series, films, and live videos. The channel’s launch in March 2018 followed the unprecedented success of Brand USA’s giant screen documentaries, “National Parks Adventure” and “America’s Musical Journey” - in driving storytelling that is relevant, engaging, and real. Brand USA’s multi-screen strategy will continue through the end of the year with ongoing premieres and launches of “America’s Musical Journey” in additional markets around the world.


IN THE NEWS

Airbus Bizlab signs MoU to help set up innovation centre in Kerala ETW Staff Mumbai AIRBUS BIZLAB India signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Government of Kerala recently to help establish an aerospace-focused innovation centre in Thiruvananthapuram. The Kerala Startup Mission (KSUM) is aimed at fostering and nurturing an enabling ecosystem for aviation startups in the state. The move highlights Airbus India’s continued commitment to the “Startup India” mission. Under the MoU, Airbus Bizlab India will coordinate with global Airbus teams and startups to develop Proof of Concepts with the support of different public agencies in Kerala. Upon successful demonstration of the Proof of Concepts by Airbus teams and startups, the innovation

centre will help them set up partnerships and deploy the chosen technologies in the state. The Government of Kerala will provide the space for the centre as well as logistical support to manage and run the programme. The mission has been envisioned for a year to begin with. “We are confident that this partnership with Airbus Bizlab will help embed innovation in the industrial ecosystem of Kerala. It will up-skill the local youth and will enhance employability,” said chief minister of Kerala, Pinarayi Vijayan who was present at the MoU signing ceremony. Dr Saji Gopinath, CEO, KSUM and Siddharth Balachandran, Airbus Bizlab India were also present. “The initiative aims to foster local talent in the aerospace domain and help promising startups to contribute to-

wards shaping the future of flying not only in India but the world. We are building this partnership on the strong foundation that Airbus Bizlab already has in India,” said Anand E Stanley, president and managing director, Airbus India and South Asia. “This is a big step in supporting the ‘Startup India’ initiative as Airbus teams, startups and the Government of Kerala will work together towards developing and deploying cutting edge aerospace technologies,” said Balachandran. Airbus BizLab is a global aerospace business accelerator where startups and Airbus intrapreneurs speed up the transformation of innovative ideas into valuable businesses. Since its inception in 2015, Airbus BizLab has accelerated 50 startups and 40 internal projects, which have raised a combined € 19.5 million.

Harness cultural routes and experiences for competitive tourism: UNWTO ETW Staff Mumbai FOLLOWING the first edition held two years ago, the 2nd International Congress on World Civilisations and Historic Routes concluded recently in Sofia, Bulgaria. In the framework of the European Year of Cultural Heritage and the EU-China Tourism Year, the event explored how tourism along his-

revealing the unique history, culture and natural assets of territories along them, becoming a powerful promotional tool and a unique instrument to increase tourism competitiveness for many destinations," said Jaime Cabal, UNWTO deputy secretary-general opening the event.Nikolina Angelkova, minister of tourism of Bulgaria, outlined her plans to advance cultural tourism in

toric routes can help to safeguard and promote tangible and intangible cultural heritage.Organised by the World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO) and the ministry of tourism of Bulgaria, the congress explored the role of national and regional public bodies in enhancing of historic routes, particularly across nations. It gathered ministers from four continents, as well as public and private experts representing iconic cultural tourism routes including Route 66, the Way of Saint James (Camino de Santiago), the Phoenicians' Route and the Silk Road. "Historic routes can play a major role in

Bulgaria. "Cultural tourism can play a key role in turning Bulgaria into an all-yearround tourism destination. We are considering creating an ancient civilisations' route incorporating UNESCO monuments, which would better acknowledge and promote the Balkan region as a tourism destination," she said. Discussions centred on identifying best practices in tourism development, management and promotion that can help to harness the tourism potential of historic routes, enhance the value of their cultural heritage, and preserve their authenticity.

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IN THE NEWS

India is pioneer market for Lufthansa City Centre Concept Diversification Programme ETW Staff Mumbai INDIA has been selected as the pioneer market for the Lufthansa City Centre Concept Diversification Programme, a new scheme offering new categories of participation: LCC Affiliates and LCC Travel Consultant. Following a diligent qualification process, Lufthansa City Center (LCC) has appointed Travels and Rentals as the first LCC partner in the world entrusted to launch this scheme in tandem with Lufthansa City Center headquarters. As a “Premium LCC Member”, Travels & Rentals is now authorised to

service as a “hub agency” for directly connected LCC Affiliates and LCC Travel Consultants. How can Lufthansa City Center help travel agencies and TMCs to thrive and grow as the Indian travel industry continues to experience fundamentally changing trends in both leisure and corporate travel? With more than 570 offices in over 90 countries and a total turnover of approximately 5.3 billion Euros, LCC is the biggest independent travel agency franchise system worldwide. The annual turnover is equally generated in the corporate as well as in the leisure segment. Worldwide, the LCC

travel agency network unites 5,300 employees. In its home market Germany, the network of owner-managed, medium sized travel agencies comprises 300 offices with more than 2,400 employees. Headquartered in Frankfrut, Lufthansa City Center carefully nurtures the international focus and global diversity of its participating agencies. Those agencies specialising in corporate travel can op to participate in the LLC Business Travel group. And a select number committed to developing more multinational corporate clients via LCC are elevated into the LCC Global

Travel Group. LCC agencies which focus on inbound destination management services participate in the Global Incoming Network (GIN). They can market and distribute their services to the rest of the LCC network via a sophisticated online platform and a comprehensive range of promotional activities. GIN offers a winning combination of local contacts, unique products and insider knowledge to LCC partners worldwide. India is currently the fastest growing aviation market in the world, and poised to become the third largest aviation market globally by 2025. With more

than three thousand IATA agencies, and more than 50,000 other travel agencies, it remains a challenge to ensure that consumers connect with the most professional travel agents in the market, offering accurate and reliable services. In these circumstances, access to outstanding training, marketing, branding, technology and supplier programmes have become imperative for any travel agency to survive. Lufthsana City Center provides each of these key components to its franchise partners, facilitating long term sustainable growth with a clear competitive advantage.

Jet Airways commences non-stop,daily service between Pune and Singapore ETW Staff Mumbai JET AIRWAYS, India’s premiere, full service international airline launched its first daily, nonstop service between Pune and Singapore effective December 1, 2018, making it the first and only airline in India to connect the vibrant city of Pune with the financial hub of the East.Singapore saw over 36,000 visitor arrivals from Pune in 2017 - the highest for an Indian city without a direct service. Recognising Pune’s potential as a leading business and commerce centre, Jet Airways’ new flight will further help expand the scope of traffic between Pune and the neighboring regions to Singapore.Travellers from Aurangabad, Ahmednagar, Sholapur, Kolhapur, Sangli, Satara, and Karad will find this flight convenient and an attractive option to connect on this

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flight to Singapore and to several cities beyond. The flight from Pune to Singapore, 9W 22 will depart Pune at 05:10 hrs (IST) with an arrival time of 13:15 hrs (local time) in the citystate of Singapore. On the return leg, flight 9W 21 is scheduled to depart from Singapore at 21:00 hrs (LT) and will arrive in Pune at 00:05 hrs (IST).Vinay Dube, CEO, Jet Airways, said, "The launch of the maiden flight between Pune and Singapore is a proud moment for us. Jet Airways is the first and the only carrier to provide direct connectivity between Pune and Singapore. With our existing 6 daily services over our hubs in Mumbai, Delhi and Bangalore, we will soon launch additional frequencies over the next week, which will help increase our reach into Singapore with nine daily direct services – making Jet Airways the largest Indian operator of flights to and from Singapore.”

Guests can seamlessly connect onwards to 21 destinations across the Far East, Asia-Pacific region and Australia via Jet Airways’ codeshares and interline partners. Jet Airways will offer one stop connectivity through codeshare flights via Singapore to Auckland, Bangkok, Brisbane, Denpasar-Bali, Hanoi, Ho

Chi Minh City, Jakarta, Kuala Lumpur, Manila, Melbourne, Shanghai etc. Jet Airways has been at the forefront in developing business and trade relations between two countries. With the launch of this direct link, customers and exporters in Pune will seamlessly be able to ferry cargo

goods to Singapore and neighboring Malaysia. Pune is known for its fresh fruit, vegetables which are popular export items and carriage of these perishable materials directly from Pune will save time and money for exporters. We are confident that this new connectivity will improve both export and import into Pune. To celebrate the launch of the new flight, Jet Airways has announced special 'introductory' return Economy fares from Pune, starting at `21,500 only, as also a Premiere fare of `65,500. These inaugural fares are applicable for journeys commencing from December 1, 2018 onwards. Guests can also avail special fares for travelling to onward destinations such as Brisbane, Jakarta, Denpasar-Bali, Phuket, Kuala Lumpur, Melbourne, Nadi, Perth, Surabaya, Sydney and Darwin via Singapore.


IN THE NEWS

Indian tourist arrivals to Greece increases by 119% ETW Staff Mumbai

effectively leveraged diverse platforms, based on specific characteristics of the Indian market." He added, "The strategy is to also promote 365-day tourism in Greece and create awareness about lesser known cities of Greece like Thessaloniki, Xanthi or Kavala which have great geophysical, historical and cultural importance along with Athens. We are closely working with our partners in India for growth across segments like families, FITS (first time travellers segment), MICE (meetings, incentives, conferences and events), destination weddings, honeymoon and films.” In 2016, Greece National Tourist Office noticed 14.6 million arrivals in total and in 2017, 15.5 million, whereas, the growth percentage of arrivals from India has been around 9.7 per cent each year.

AS PER the statistics released by Greece National Tourist Office (GNTO) and Athens International Airport, 38,046 Indian tourists visited Greece in the nine months vis-à-vis 17,376 Indian tourists during the same period in 2017, which is a whopping increase of 119 per cent.Speaking about the positive growth, Konstantinos Tsegas, secretary general, Greek National Tourism Organisation said, “Greece as a destination has gained momentum over the years and we are glad to witness the rising interest of Indians for Greece as a popular holiday destination across the country. Our approach is to target the captive audience across various age groups simply by appealing to every kind of travel need. We have

WOWair announces wedding sweepstakes in Iceland ETW Staff Mumbai WOW air, the low-cost Icelandic transatlantic carrier, is all set to offer the gift of a lifetime this wedding season. The airline is announcing wedding sweepstakes, where people will be given the opportunity to sign up for a chance to give one happy couple the honeymoon of a lifetime in Iceland, and at the same time win flight tickets for themselves. The contest, open to all persons over the age of 18, will include travel to Iceland and stay in one of Iceland's most luxurious suites, at Fosshotel, for five nights. The couple will also win a trip with Reykjavik Helicopters to a glacier, a

whale watching tour and get to take a dip in the world famous Blue Lagoon. On top of all that, WOW air will provide the happy couple with a 1000$ in spending money. The person who nominated the happy couple will also receive two roundtrip tickets to Iceland or any of WOW air’s North American destinations. To avail this exclusive trip, people need to sign themselves or their favourite couple at http://www.wowair.in /honeymoon. The contest began November 20 and will go on till December 11 and the winners will be announced by WOW air over its social media accounts on December 14. Announcing this exceptional gift for Indian newly-

Skuli Mogensen

weds, Skúli Mogensen, CEO and founder of WOW air said, “Indian wedding season is round the corner, we are very

happy to announce this honeymoon of a lifetime for our Indian travellers. The response we have re-

ceived from the Indian consumers is remarkable. With our first flight round the corner, this contest will definitely give a boost to our presence in the Indian market.” The airlines is serving the number of destinations from New Delhi including Iceland, Chicago, New York, Detroit, Baltimore, Boston, Toronto, Montreal, Los Angeles, and Orlando with the fares starting from Rs 13,499. WOW air commences service from Indira Gandhi International Airport, New Delhi (DEL) on December 7, 2018 with three weekly flights connecting passengers to North America and Europe over their hub in Reykjavik, Iceland (KEF).

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IN THE NEWS

Expedia Vacation Deprivation Report 2018: Indians feel most vacation deprived in the world ETW Staff Mumbai EXPEDIA, one of the world’s largest full service online travel agency, has announced the results of the 2018 Vacation Deprivation study, an annual survey of vacation habits across 19 countries. The report highlighted that vacation deprivation is on the rise, and 75 per cent of Indian feel vacation deprived which is the highest in the world followed by South Korea (72 per cent) and Hong Kong (69 per cent). Indian workers also do not take all vacation days and rank five to leave their vacations unused after Japan, Italy, Australia, New Zealand. Manmeet Ahluwalia, marketing head, Brand Expedia in India said, “We have seen an increase in support from Indian employers to take vacations. However, employees still do not avail their full vacation days because of reasons like missing out on important work decisions (#1, 25 per

cent), fear of being seen less committed (#1, 19 per cent) or finding it difficult to coordinate time with their travel companion (#1, 33 per cent). Our study also reflect that 18 per cent Indians feel that those who are successful at their job don’t take vacation days.” He added, “We dug deeper to understand reasons which are keeping Indians away from taking vacations and realised that, Indians are the least to get a free pass while vacationing. They are expected to be available to their colleagues (#1, 34 per cent) and supervisors (#1, 32 per cent), making 34 per cent Indians check their mails at least once per day. For 64 per cent of Indians the impending workload after they come back from vacation is an important factor in deciding the length of their holiday. Not surprised to know that 17 per cent of Indians have not taken any leave from past one year. These figures throws light on various factors

resulting in making India the most vacation deprived nation in the world”. On the positive side, vacations does not only hit the ‘reset’ button on their stress and anxiety but also make them feel more focused, relaxed, productive and motivated at work post their vacation. Needless to say, 55 per cent Indians feel that vacation deprivation effect their productivity and hence need to be taken seriously by all of us. Though the feeling of vacation deprivation among Indians have gone up, their guilt associ-

ated with taking a vacation has gone down by 9 per cent from previous year to 63 per cent in 2018. One of the leading reasons people don’t use their vacation time is because they’re saving them for a big trip which means they’re going longer between vacations. Bigger trips are great, but even a quick break can drastically improve quality of life. Aim to schedule a staycation or add an extra day onto a holiday weekend in between longer trips to get the best of both worlds,” he added. Reason for Indians being de-

prived is because 63 per cent Indians can do without a vacation for over three months and even though on an average Indians avail 15 days of vacation out of the 20 days they receives, 53 per cent take fewer days than they get. Even after 78 per cent bosses being supportive of vacations, Indians continue to get diverted by work while vacationing as 32 per cent supervisors, 34 per cent co-workers, 33 per cent junior staff keep bothering Indians while they are vacationing.

IHG and SAMHI conduct exclusive survey into road warriors’travel considerations across top five metros ETW Staff Mumbai INTERCONTINENTAL Hotels Group (IHG), one of the world’s leading hotel companies, announced results of a survey conducted in conjunction with SAMHI to understand the challenges and considerations of road warriors in India today. The survey was conducted by Nielsen India in Delhi, Mumbai, Bengaluru, Chennai and Hyderabad with 2544 year old respondents who travel largely for business across India. The survey concludes that finding a hotel in the right location is one of the most challenging aspects of planning their

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trips. This challenge is further highlighted by the respondents when ranking the most important attributes when booking a hotel for the trip. 29 per cent of respondents ranked ‘location of the hotel’ as the most important attribute to feel confident to succeed while on a business trip. The next most important attribute was ‘comfort of the stay’ ranked in second place with 18 per cent of respondents selecting it as the most important consideration for booking their hotel. Both attributes were ranked amongst 12 attributes in total including price and amenities. Vivek Bhalla, regional vice president, South West Asia, IHG

commented on the survey, “All our market studies to date have shown that location is a key consideration for travellers in the mid-market segment. This survey confirms the same from a consumers’ perspective.”He continued, “Location has also been a pivotal element of our partnership with SAMHI as each of the 14 hotels in the Holiday Inn Express portfolio is located in a highly accessible, commercialised area which allows for convenient transportation, business services and great dining options. Guests staying at a Holiday Inn Express hotel can rest assured that their stay will make them ‘More Than Ready’ for

their travel mission.” Ashish Jakhanwala, CEO and founder, SAMHI commented, “We are thrilled to find that both location of the hotel and comfort of stay have ranked so highly in this survey. We have been working in partnership with IHG to differentiate the Holiday Inn Express brand in India. Our portfolio of 14 hotels have been designed to provide an enhanced product, design and service culture that appeals to the savvy, hip and cool Indian traveller who is aspiring for success.”He commented further, “Our first opening, Holiday Inn Express Gurgaon Sector 50, sets the benchmark for the remaining 13 hotels to open in the

next year. The next hotel to open in our portfolio will be Holiday Inn Express Bengaluru Whitefield which is also located in a strategic area. Whitefield is a young and vibrant IT hub with malls and eateries in abundance for visitors to the city.” IHG has been spearheading the growth of the mid-scale hotel segment in the country specifically with the Holiday Inn brand family, via rapid expansion and strategic partnerships. Following the partnership with SAMHI, the Holiday Inn Express brand has been emerging as one of the fastest growing brands in the mid-scale hotel segment in the country.


IN THE NEWS

NYC & Company unveils refreshed tourism campaign 'Famous Original NewYork City' ETW Staff Mumbai NYC & COMPANY, New York City’s official destination marketing organisation, recently unveiled its refreshed digitalfirst global tourism campaign 'Famous Original New York City'. The campaign intends to reach travellers around the world, celebrating the personal ways NYC can be experienced. Original in-house creative along with supporting video, photo galleries, editorial and social content - is pegged to distinct newly curated travel 'affinities': Secret NYC, Glamorous NYC and Classic NYC. “Our refreshed campaign ‘Famous Original New York City’ - with its affirming tag line ‘Welcomes You. Always’ is designed to reinforce New York City’s fundamental values of diversity and inclusion and its world-class welcoming spirit. Utilising our new digital tools and affinity-driven content, we invite global visitors to discover their ‘Famous Original New York City’ now,” said Fred

Dixon, president and CEO, NYC & Company. Digital, in-kind and partner media contribute to an approximate campaign value of US$ 15 million, with promotions running globally across 17 countries through summer 2019. Out-of-home advertisements will appear domestically in New York City, Boston, Chicago, San Francisco and San Juan. Internationally, the campaign will appear in Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, Chile, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Spain, Sweden and United Kingdom. With our out of home media partner J C Decaux, the promotions will run for the first-time in Colombia, India and Peru. In partnership with Facebook and Instagram, the campaign will utilise content marketing that has been developed to attract audience members with specific interests and behaviours. Artificial intelligence will target social media users with an intent to travel, ultimately encouraging visits to the campaign

landing page, where dynamically generated content - pegged to the travel affinity of interest - will live, along with market-specific travel offers. New this year are tools that will allow NYCgo.com visitors to immediately book favourite Classic, Glamorous or Secret elements, including attractions, museums, restaurants, shopping, tours and editorial packages. Users who have favourited items can then build custom itineraries based on personal, saved interests

through the travel-planning tool Utrip. Additional travel affinities will be introduced throughout the campaign’s duration. Additional strategic collaborations with partners including Aeromexico (Mexico), British Airways (UK), Copa Airlines (Chile), Porter Airlines (Canada), TUI (Germany) and TripAdvisor are live, with further partnerships to follow. Through these partners, various travel packages will be offered throughout the duration of the campaign, many includ-

ing flight and/or hotel deals. In addition, NYC & Company holds several tourism alliances domestically and internationally. “The newest iteration of the 'Famous Original New York City' campaign pushes the boundaries of digital marketing and is our answer to the challenge of how to present a destination that is many different things to many different people,” said Nancy Mammana, senior vice president, marketing, NYC & Company.

SOTC Travel wins 2018 PATAGold Award ETW Staff Mumbai SOTC Travel was conferred the prestigious 2018 Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA) Gold Award for its entry in the Marketing Media- Travel Advertisement Broadcast category, for “Holidays Bring You Closer” at Langkawi, Malaysia. The 2018 PATA Gold Awards honoured the exceptional contributions to promote travel and tourism across the Asia Pacific region. This year’s awards attracted 200 entries from 87 organisations and in-

dividuals worldwide. The PATA Grand Awards were presented to outstanding entries in four principal categories: Marketing; Education and Training; Environment, and Heritage and Culture. The winners were selected by an independent judging committee consisting of fourteen senior executives from the travel, tourism and hospitality sectors. SOTC Travel’s entry in the Marketing Media- Travel Advertisement Broadcast category “Holidays Bring You Closer” highlights the brand promise of ‘We are for holi-

days’ and inspires consumers to enjoy their holidays while creating memories for a life-

time. The jury members were most impressed with the high quality and exceptional

standard of the entry submitted. On winning the accolade, Vishal Suri, managing director, SOTC said, “It is a significant achievement to be honoured with the 2018 PATA Gold Award. This Award reiterates our position that “We are for holidays” and our commitment to deliver enhanced and memorable holiday experiences for our customers around the world. We will continue to strive to make their holidays memorable and for many more such recognitions in the future.”

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IN THE NEWS

A helping hand on foreign shores THE OTAOI convention kicked off at the picturesque Cape Town in South Africa with TrawellTag Cover-More protecting all the delegates with specialised travel assistance & insurance. The old Boy Scout pledge says “Be Prepared”. The convention committee’s foresight to partner with TrawellTag Cover-More for comprehensive assistance services proved to be extremely crucial when June Mukherjee, a senior journalist and convention delegate, set on an adventurous segway ride. The enjoyable ride turned into a nightmare within minutes when she fell off the segway and realised her right leg was non-functional. Mukherjee was traumatised from the accident as she was all alone in a foreign country, far from her family. The convention organisers, however, contacted the emergency assistance team of TrawellTag Cover-More who then swung into action immediately. After speaking with Mukherjee to comfort and counsel her, the emergency assistance team arranged for her admission into one of the most renowned medical facilities in South Africa, where she was detected with multiple fractures from her right knee to the ankle. The assistance team constantly monitored her heath condition by coordinating with the doctor handling her case while reassuring her that she was in safe hands. Necessary arrangements for her subsequent surgery were undertaken and all the financial aspects of the procedure were taken care of. Once

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June Mukherjee

she was fit to travel, Mukherjee was flown back to India under expert medical supervision. Throughout this period, TrawellTag Cover-More was constantly by her side, to ensure and assure Ms. Mukherjee that she was in the safest hands possible. Mukherjee quoted that with the support offered by TrawellTag Cover-More, she was able to receive the best treatment and remained stress-free through the course of recovery in South Africa as well as during her journey back home to India.

“We are extremely grateful to TrawellTag Cover-More for their prompt assistance services that ensured our delegate made it back home safe and sound.” – OTOAI Convention Committee

“Going by my experience, global assistance and insurance provided by TrawellTag Cover-More should be regarded as a travel essential by every traveller!” - June Mukherjee

EOS and Etihad Airways engineering set to expand industrial 3D printing capabilities ETW Staff Mumbai EOS, the world’s leading technology supplier in the field of industrial 3D printing, and Etihad Airways Engineering, the largest aircraft maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) services provider in the Middle East, have agreed a strategic partnership which will significantly expand local capabilities for industrial 3D printing in aviation.

process, which offers a substantial value-add in terms of optimised repair, lightweight design, shorter lead times and customisation options, particularly during aircraft modifications. Bernhard Randerath, vice president design, engineering and innovation at Etihad Airways Engineering said, “Etihad constantly invests in new technology and has identified additive manufacturing as a key technology for aviation interior parts, as well as ap-

Markus Glasser and Bernhard Randerath

The partnership agreed at the Formula 1 Etihad Airways Abu Dhabi Grand Prix recently will enable Etihad Airways Engineering to produce aircraft parts at their facility in Abu Dhabi. Visitors to the race were able to view a fullscale 3D printed front wing of a Formula 1 car and speak to 3D printing experts. The initial phase of this collaboration, which uses EOS technology with an EOS system for additive manufacturing (AM), will include the qualification of machine, process and materials in accordance with aviation regulatory requirements. Following a structured selection process, suitable cabin interior parts will be produced through the AM

plications beyond aerospace in the future. The technology is a key enabler when it comes to design and innovation in our industry. Etihad is proud to work towards a vision of a 3D-printed cabin interior.” Markus Glasser, senior vice president export region at EOS adds, “Etihad is providing industry-leading aircraft maintenance and engineering solutions. As such we share the same mindset as both of our companies are committed to high quality solutions and constant technology innovation. We are honored to support our partner on this innovation journey, as such bringing the production of aircraft interior parts to the next level.”


IN THE NEWS

‘Tour to Feast’powered by Cox & Kings set to redefine culinary tourism ETW Staff Mumbai INDIAN CUISINE is as diverse as the country itself. Each state has a distinctive culinary journey that reflects the rich cultural identity and fascinating history of India. Tour to Feast, powered by Cox & Kings has been launched to introduce travellers to unique handcrafted delicious journeys across India’s most popular culinary destinations, with a slice of history. Each of these journeys is designed and accompanied by hand-picked experts who will take travelers through the evolution of the indigenous cuisines of each region. Speaking at the launch, Debolin Sen, head, Tour to Feast said, “Our distinctly crafted tours take travellers beyond just restaurant tastings, give a taste of a region’s culture through its cuisine. Whether you want to taste food through bazaars, food walks or home dining experiences, cook like a local or just curious to know

about the origins of the most celebrated cuisines, we have all that covered under Tour to Feast which promises to offer authentic culinary experiences like no one else.” Karan Anand, head, relationships, Cox & Kings said, “India is a haven for food lovers and each region’s culture can be best introduced through its food. We see a substantial increase in the number of tourists integrating culinary tours as part of their travel experiences. In India, each state has unique flavors, delectable cuisines and such amazing stories of bygone eras and their influence on food - the richness of these experiences needs to be presented in a very unique way and through a niche offering like Tour to Feast.” To begin with, Tour to Feast will offer journeys across the most popular culinary destinations in India like Mumbai, Delhi, Lucknow, Varanasi, Jaipur, Agra and Goa. Travellers can choose from an array of customised culinary holidays.

Tour to Feast – Custom-made Itineraries ● Feast On lets you experience each destination to its fullest - from its historical monuments and bustling markets to cooking classes and sitdown meals with local chefs. This tour is for the traveller who doesn’t want to miss out on any of a destination’s diverse offerings, culinary or otherwise. ● Cook like a Local is for those who enjoy or want to learn how to cook a region’s cuisine and get a deeper understanding of the produce on offer. Expect a mix of cook-

ing classes and demonstrations by local chefs and home cooks, market and farm tours, and fun cocktail workshops. Forgotten Worlds plunges travellers into a bygone era via heritage trails, cooking classes, home-dining experiences featuring forgotten recipes, and dying regional art forms. Hop on board to discover the heart of a destination, and understand what it was like before commercialisation took over. Foodscapes takes one through the various culinary pockets that make up a des-

tination, giving a deeper understanding of the communities that call it home. Meet locals and learn quintessential home-style recipes, set out on heritage trails, and enjoy street food walks served with a slice of history. Eat Retreat is for those who want to get away from the rush hours and the pollution of a city and enjoy the gifts that nature has to offer. Indulge in organic farming activities, spice plantation tours, rustic meals, cooking workshops, and even yoga and meditation sessions.

Yatra partners with Agoda to offer Indian hotels to international travellers ETW Staff Mumbai YATRA.COM, one of India’s leading online travel companies, has entered into a strategic partnership with Agoda, a part of Booking Holdings, to offer its Indian hotel rooms to Agoda’s global travellers. Under this agreement, Agoda, one of the world’s fastest growing online travel agents (OTA), will now have access to Yatra.com’s inventory of more than 100,000 accommodation

options in over 1300+ Indian cities and towns. The addition of Yatra’s inventory with real-time pricing on Agoda.com and the Agoda app will provide international travelers access to a larger selection of ideal and relevant accommodation, to suit their travel needs. The partnership will improve accessibility to the Indian accommodation market worldwide, leveraging Yatra's strong hotels technology platform and its relationship with accommodation providers.

“Agoda is one of the largest global accommodation booking platforms with excellent reach among travelers across the world and in Asia Pacific in particular, and we are delighted to join forces with them. There is a strong interest from global travellers in visiting India, and providing a wide choice of real time hotel inventory helps ensure a seamless travel booking experience. We believe this alliance will not only prove beneficial for Agoda’s customers, but will

also be valuable for our hotel partners, by providing them incremental global traveler demand,” said Dhruv Shringi, cofounder, CEO, Yatra.com. “We are always seeking partnerships that improve our customers’ travel experience through technology, and by providing them access to the widest accommodation choices around the world - at the best price. This partnership with Yatra will further enhance our hotel inventory offer in the fast growing Indian travel market. We look forward

to making this partnership a success,” added John Brown, CEO, Agoda. The hotel inventory provided by Yatra will include the over 6000 ‘Yatra Smart’ hotels. With benefits such as 100 per cent free cancellation, cash-back service guarantees, room upgrades and 24 hour check in-check out, available on a large number of curated budget and mid segment, the ‘Yatra Smart’ brand is already the preferred choice for India customers.

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THE MAIN FOCUS

THE DYNAMICS OF DESTINATION WEDDINGS Destination weddings are getting finer and wedding specialists are only seeing further growth in this exclusive enterprise. Few tour operators and wedding planners have analysed the market right and have found business sense in getting people hitched. Reema Lokesh reports

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“Digitalisation will be key to optimising efficiency for operations and back end for weddings” Mahesh Shirodkar MD, Tamarind Global

“I would love to see some regulation and licensing come into the industry so that it brings in better professionals” Sushil Shamlal Wadhwa Founder and CMD, Platinum Wedding World a division of the Platinum World Grroup

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nternational tourism boards are rolling out the red carpet, airfares are getting competitive, charter flights can be booked today at competitive rates, local destination management companies have got it all sorted out, hotels are extending the best in class hospitality service. All this are more to get that ultra HNI, HNI or an aspirational couple or family as their client. Weddings planners, tourism boards, hotels, DMCs and other ancillary services are of the view and firmly so that the wedding business is booming and there is no looking back especially in terms of the growth and popularity of destination wedding tourism. Going niche is the order of the day and few tour operators

have found their calling in this field and have gone full throttle. A classic example, is Satish Ramnani, chief dreamer, founder, director, Veydaa Eternal Weddings, Kolkata. Belonging to a traditional travel company, Ramnani realised the potential that this niche business holds and he decided to venture into the space with focus, though the family business of tour operating also continues to grow steadily. This displays an evolution of a kind from being a traditional tour operator to find a niche within the space. The journey for them has been exciting and encouraging at the same time. For Mahesh Shirodkar, MD, Tamarind Global, “Expectations and sensitivities of handling are getting more and more challenging. Uniqueness and creativity both with regard to destinations, venues and content will be the differentiators. However, This industry is

recession proof, driven by traditions and emotions. Hybrid weddings will also take place more with large receptions taking place in the hometown and a select crunched few being taken to the destination- short and long haul for celebrations.” International destinations are rising up the popularity chart and the demand is tilting in favour of newer and unseen destinations like Baku, Bahrain, Budapest and Barcelona as compared to the well established Thailand, Bali and Hongkong. Few years ago the entire concept of a destination wedding was new. Sneha Tejwani and Anisha Bathija, founder partners, Occasionz Unlimited, opine, “The world is become a destination for the clients today. People are thinking differently and demand different products offerings. Natural landscapes like mountains, ski resorts, beaches, to manmade places like the palaces,

etc have a special appeal. Today we see ourselves as wedding directors. From scripting the entire wedding like a director of a movie the entire process requires unadulterated commitment and reasonable amount of counseling. Though the fact is that we are there as wedding planners, we also double up as marriage counselors. From wedding tourism experts to being the agony aunt, this business calls for serious work as it involves people and their emotions. Since the demand for newer destinations is on the rise, it is critical to undertake pre wedding site inspections, as we believe that in such cases there are no retakes.” A quality wedding planner will always hand hold the client till the end. However before the concept took off a decade ago approximately, a host of mental blocks existed. From logistical issues to travel arrangements, from check on spends to the very


( fear of handling guests on foreign shores, the entire business did not receive the kind of demand that it enjoys today. Like most businesses there were few bold and brave thought leaders both from the buyers and the sellers side that worked to build a concept that eventually kicked off with fervour. According to Shilpa and Sonika, directors - Shilpa & Sonika -Events and Wedding Planning, “Hiring a wedding planner is a matter of prestige and convenience today hence the market is growing and everyone is getting an opportunity to be a part of this industry. The growth is rising by the day whether its wedding season or off season. The rising affluence and desire for ‘memories with a difference’ that is making Indians themselves splurge more than ever on weddings. Speaking about the vibrancy of the market and the business potential, Sushil Shamlal Wadhwa, founder and CMD, Platinum Wedding World a division of the Platinum World Group, reiterates, “The wedding industry is booming in India! The size of the wedding industry is estimated to be almost US$ 3 billion now. The outbound destination wedding market is growing exponentially, due to increased awareness about new and exotic destinations thanks to movies, celebrity and high profile family weddings.” According to Aarti Manocha, founder, Milestones to Memories (MtoM), this market is evergreen and it is getting greener by the day. “The requests are getting sophisticated, which calls for uncompromising service and eye for detail. From Europe to the GCC countries, the client is looking for venues across the globe, both national and international,” she avers.

Specialised demands As the business grows, the demand and detailing from the client also gets complicated and refined. As Wadhwa puts it, the job of the wedding planner, has got all the more intrinsic and intense, as the planners are wed-

ding architects by definition today. The eye for detailing, being able to deliver the most unique experience and ultimately uncompromising service quality and standard is the norm, when it comes to those who treat this specialisation as a serious business. From exchanging vows in a parachute, to exchanging rings while scuba diving, a wedding party in the wildlife game reserve or having the main ceremony in the main temple complex of Angor Wat, Combodia, wedding planners have gone that extra mile to fulfill such demands. Adds Ramnani, “My client was clear they wanted a temple wedding, but only in the main temple zone at Cambodia's world famous Angor Wat. The tourism board, the local DMC, our networking etc all need to work in perfect harmony to get such demands fulfilled. We have a solid database and network to get close to organising some out of the ordinary demands.” Adds Wadhwa, “9 out of 10 times, wedding clients want super attractive deals. They want destinations that offer good connectivity, ease of obtaining visas, choice of good luxury hotels, venues for various functions and of course ability to get Indian and specialised vegetarian cuisine served for their functions. As experienced wedding architects, we have built a network of reliable associates in more than 200 destinations in 80 countries and have ready information on hotels, venues etc and also fantastic relationships with tourism boards, airlines, visa offices, etc. We have a panel of decor companies and specialised Indian caterers to cater to all types of cuisines and requirements at any destination globally.” Destinations such as Lake Como, Antalya, Mauritius, Baku, Thailand, Dubai Oman, Bahrain, Barcelona, Budapest, Bali, Switzerland are few of the favourites but the list is getting wider by the day as per the experts.

Proactive stakeholders Sensing demand and revenue inflow from this line of business, international tourism

boards consider the India market a buoyant source market. Tourism boards are rolling out the red carpet and offering seamless services to get the wedding business into their region. Says Manocha, “The GCC market has got the pulse right and countries such as Bahrain have get the formula right. They are working well with both local and overseas partners to bring in ultra HNI weddings to their region. The Emirates Palace, Waldrof Astoria, Rushikaimah, are popular choices today and the budget to host a wedding can stretch as per the client requirements.” Ramnani adds, “Eastern Europe is also rising up the popularity chart. When we started few years ago it was Thailand and Asian markets which were primarily ruling but with time new and emerging destination have made an impact, such as Baku. The aviation sector has also got proactive, from charter flights which are affordable today to landing rights being given for charters, airlines extending their support to get the work going, has all been rather encouraging. The tourism boards have been proactive in getting permits and sanctions for late night parties, international hotel chains are handing over their kitchens to the Indian family cooks to offer guests the desired cuisine. Attractions such as the Opera House are giving out the place at extremely competitive rates.” Shirodkar is also appreciative of the tourism boards. He says, “Tourism boards have awakened to the potential of the Indian wedding business. Tamarind has been the first movers in a lot of GCC countries to showcase to the boards as well as DMCs and hotels what the upside could be in terms of footfalls and revenues. We try and use local vendors as far as possible and provide value to the client along with give employment and business to the vendors locally.” Pippa Williamson, senior vice president – sales, Shangri-La International Hotel Mgt, clearly states that the

THE MAIN FOCUS

wedding business especially the demand generated from the India market and the other markets for Indian weddings has been robust. According to her, customers are increasingly seeking unique and customised experiences. She says, “This evolution is exciting for us at Shangri-La as we have large resorts in differentiated locations that meet these trends. There is a real desire for each family to create something innovative within the framework. Being able to provide bespoke and out of the box experiences has seen successful weddings at our hotels. We see a lot of demand for Oman, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Abu Dhabi and Kota Kinabalu. Shangri-La is deeply aligned with this industry, as a long term stakeholder. Our regional office in India is manned by a permanent wedding specialist for the market, and our wedding hotels are trained with established guidelines to manage and execute a high profile, high quality guest experience. Long term, we see opportunity to work even more closely with this industry, as we open the Shangri-La.” She further adds, “Given the complexity of an Indian destination wedding, all stakeholders need to work together to pull off a successful and memorable wedding experience for the family. Operators including tourism boards, DMCs and hotels that are proactive see significant returns when they invest in this high value segment.” Wadhwa comments, “Countries like Thailand, Dubai, etc have set up specialised divisions to target the Indian wedding industry. DMCs too are realising the same and are trying to learn the dietary preferences of Indians and are working on developing products and services that would help them attract Indian weddings. Specialist vendors like entertainment providers, decor companies etc in foreign countries are actively reaching out to Indian wedding planners to offer their services.” Kempinski Hotels, with its portfolio across the globe

“My client was clear they wanted a temple wedding, but only in the main temple zone at Cambodia's world famous Angor Wat” Satish Ramnani Chief dreamer, founder, director, Veydaa Eternal Weddings

“Shangri-La is deeply aligned with this industry, as a long term stakeholder ” Pippa Williamson Senior vice president – sales, Shangri-La International Hotel Mgt

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cover )

“Today we see ourselves as wedding directors” Sneha Tejwani Founder partner, Occasionz Unlimited

“From Europe to the GCC countries, the client is looking for venues across the globe” Aarti Manocha Founder, Milestones to Memories (MtoM)

considers the India wedding market extremely robust. Ciragan Palace in Turkey and St Moritz, in Switzerland and the Emirates Palace are top choices for destination weddings. Shilpa and Sonika are highly appreciative of the DMCs they deal with. They say that, DMCs are the biggest support to the wedding industry. They provide their expert opinions, help planners face challenges, assist planners in terms of obtaining permissions and licenses. They help planners to smoothly plan a wedding. They also assist in helping planners to get the best locations / venues in terms of budgets and pricing.

The India market story

“Irrespective of economic downturns, weddings remain a stable business” Shilpa and Sonika directors - Shilpa & Sonika -Events and Wedding Planning

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India is a top choice for destination weddings. Rajasthan and Goa are leading the way. However, the only block that restricts increase in business is lesser number of inventory available, especially for buy outs. Shirodkar feels that India can be expensive in certain areas where inventory is limited and fragmented during the season. Supply vs demand results in yield revenue managers demanding a very high ADR. However, India has some fan-

tastic locations, venues, world class hotels with hospitality, but the infrastructure supply and sometimes accessibility poses challenges. Manocha emphasises, “India is an excellent choice for a destination wedding, but we can definitely do with more supply of rooms especially in popular places like Jodhpur, Udaipur, Jaisalmer and Goa. The situation is definitely improving, with newer properties opening doors but the growth is rather slow. Wadhwa feels that,” India, has not been able to tap the full potential of destination weddings due to lack of adequate hotel inventory in popular destinations. Rajasthan and Goa are by far the most popular in India for weddings, but have limited choices in terms of 5-star hotels and venues. So the government needs to do something to change this. If they can give tax breaks to companies setting up hotels in resort towns, improve airline connectivity etc, then there is a lot of business waiting to be tapped.” Shilpa and Sonika bring in the NRI perspective and for them India is the first choice most of the times. India as a

destination is a great place to do weddings as there are a lot of options and locations. India has some wedding friendly hotels. Mahabalipuram, is also getting popular for weddings, apart from the well established destinations. Ramnani also seconds the view. He says that the Bengali NRIs prefer doing their weddings in Kolkata.

Future watch As per experts, this is one market that has shown resilience. Shilpa and Sonika feel that, irrespective of economic downturns, weddings remain a stable business as it is a oncein-a-lifetime event for most people in India. So the future was and shall be bright. According to Shirodkar, “Digitalisation also will be key to optimising efficiency for operations and back end for weddings. Food innovation with respect to cuisine will also form an important aspect. In terms of challenges he feels that, buy outs and large inventory confirmations in selected hotels always is challenging as hotels in demand have always business on books from leisure operators and displacement costs sometimes don’t justify the spend.” Dedicated event managers within hotels are also

something hotels need to invest in if they are keen on the wedding segment business. Ramnani, speaks about the power of the social media that has further enhanced business growth. “Apart from reference and word of mouth business, a lot of international clients and NRIs connect with Veydaa after visiting our website, reading blogs, social media feedback etc,” he says. Wadhwa points out, “As the industry size grows, it attracts more players to jump into the fray and become wedding planners. That has also led to a proliferation of small sized companies with not much experience in the field, which I feel could be a dangerous trend, as such companies lack the desired experience, sell their services for cheap, and sometime are unable to deliver on their promises, giving the industry a questionable reputation. Many clients too feel that they should contact hotels and tourism boards directly, with the hope of getting good prices.” He concludes on a strong note, “I would love to see some regulation and licensing come into the industry so that it brings in better professionals.”


SPOTLIGHT

Reimagine remarketing Adobe expalins how using email and analytics can gain customer loyalty and executive buy-in

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et’s face it. Customers don’t always do what you want them to. Life is busy. They’re easily distracted. This is the challenge that gave birth to remarketing, but there’s no reason it should stop there. With the right combination of email strategy and customer intelligence, you can not only keep your customers engaged, you can prove internally the new potential of this veteran channel.

A roadmap to revenue Email marketers are in a tough spot. They know the value of email, but sometimes it feels like they’re the only ones. For example, they understand that when it comes to return on investment, email is always at the head of the pack. According to Econsultancy, email has a comfortable lead over channels like display advertising. But ROI notwithstanding, email marketing doesn’t get the attention - or the investment - it deserves. According to Forrester’s US Digital Marketing Forecast, companies consistently invest 10 times as much in display as they do in email. So email marketers are in a bind. They need to delight their customers and convince their executives of email’s value, all with limited resources. One demonstrably good answer is email remarketing. Study after study demonstrates the effectiveness of emails sent in response to customer actions. But more importantly, remarketing is a strategy that allows you to start with what you have and prove consistent value, then scale into ever increasing accuracy, finesse and success. A good remarketing strategy is like a road map into the future, guiding your email marketing - and your company - into a world of context-driven messages, engaged customers and increased revenues.

A subtle but powerful experience. The idea behind email remarketing is pretty straightforward. When someone starts an action you want them to take and then stops for some reason, you send an email to encourage them to finish. The most obvious example of this is the abandoned shopping trolley. A customer comes to an ecommerce site, puts a product in their basket, decides to think about it and ultimately forgets it’s there. Later that day, they get an email from the company, reminding them the product is in their basket. This prompts the customer to complete the sale. It’s a basic but effective tactic. But despite the popularity of the abandoned shopping trolley use case, the idea isn’t limited to retail. Financial institutions and B2B companies often use the same tactic to follow up with would-be customers who abandon application forms and such. Other industries use similar applications - see the following list for a few examples. ● Abandoned trip itinerary (hotel, cruise, airline etc.) ● Partially filled in form (application, sign up, gated content etc.) ● Interrupted service interactions ● Payments (bills, donations etc.) ● Download fails ● Prolonged interest (in a product, trip etc.) ● Video interruptions. But when you deconstruct a remarketing campaign, you find that the principles behind remarketing go way beyond a simple reminder of an abandoned interaction. At the end of the day, remarketing is about understanding your customer’s intention and then taking action on that knowledge. Why is your customer putting products in their basket in the first place? What are they trying to do?

When you know the answers to questions like these, you can send them messages they actually want to read because you’ve proven that you understand and respect them. And it’s subtle but powerful - experiences like this that build customer loyalty.

The art of intention Before we explore remarketing that goes beyond the basket, let’s examine its underlying principles in greater detail. As you consider your remarketing strategy, here are five questions you’ll want to answer. Why are you sending the message? The beginning of a good remarketing strategy is a clear “why.” To get there, you need to ask other questions, like what customer intention are you trying to respond to? What do you want them to do? The more specific you can get, the better. Who is receiving it? Understanding your audience is crucial. And again, the more specific you can get, the better. Every piece of information you can gather on your customers - everything from purchasing history to behavioural data - can help you to create a remarketing message that works. What is the right timing and cadence? Once you understand your audience and your why, you

can determine when you should send your message and how many follow-ups you think you’ll need. The Internet is full of advice about the “right” time to do everything, including sending remarketing emails. The truth is, the right time varies from situation to situation, but you need to be prepared to respond quickly to take advantage of their motives. How are they receiving it? To send the best message, you need to know not only how your customer will be reading it, but what they’ll do as a result. This question is becoming increasingly difficult to answer as new technologies come into play and the online and off-line worlds become ever more entangled. Obviously, mobile devices and desktops are the two main channels now, but as wearables and the Internet of Things become more prevalent, good data on your audience consumption behaviour will become ever more important. Is your content simple and useful? Again, this question goes back to your audience and your why. In order to be useful, you need to approach your emails from a customer-centric perspective. Guided by these principles, you can launch a basic remarketing campaign pretty easily

and get good results. Consider moments where your customers are on the cusp of conversion but don’t quite make it. Then keep in touch to them and offer a solution. If you’re honest about what’s wrong and put yourself in your customer’s place, you’ll see results. For example, one national hardware retailer had an e-commerce site and adopted a basic abandoned basket campaign. But they weren’t seeing the results they expected, so they dug into their analytics data and started looking more closely at what their customers were doing. They quickly discovered that their customers were putting big-ticket items in their baskets as a way to research products and compare prices, but then they were purchasing those items in physical shops. With this new insight gleaned from cross-channel data about the actual behaviour and intent of their customers, they re-worked their campaign to focus on reminders instead of purchases, with much better results. But as you’re successful, you can’t sit still. Because good remarketing relies so heavily on the context in which your customers receive it, remarketing is a great, ROI-friendly catalyst for

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SPOTLIGHT transforming your entire email strategy.

A real no-brainer The thing that makes remarketing really interesting is data. In their core, all remarketing campaigns are basically the same - a way to capitalise on customer intent. But their success really depends on the data you bring to the table and how creatively you take advantage of that data. The amount of data you need to run a basic remarketing campaign is pretty small, but as we saw with the hardware store, even a little more data can change your approach and improve the result. Integrating an email platform with the necessary inputs to take advantage of advanced analytics can take an investment. So in the beginning, you may need to get creative to find and use the right data. But if you plan and execute your beginning campaigns with integration as a goal, you can send great emails and demonstrate the unequivocal value of insight-driven email marketing to your leadership that will make the needed investment a no-brainer. Simms Jenkins, CEO of the email marketing agency BrightWave agrees, “Businesses typically underestimate the effort it takes to modify existing email tools when integrating new data sources. But we also encounter challenges such as resource availability and justification of the effort. For example, companies have the resources but are unable to quantify the benefits of integrating data in advance to justify the level of effort required. We have resolved both problems successfully by manually integrating data for a random segment of the audience and using it to prove the value of integration, which allows the case to be made for allocating existing or contracted resources.”

Analytics all the way The value of analytics to remarketing - and to your email strategy in general - can be seen in a variety of ways. First, it helps you to understand your customer. Not just who they are and what they do, but the con-

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text in which those actions are made. This gives you the insight you need to provide real value. But analytics also gives you the ability to notice those moments when conversion falters and then act quickly and automatically. In today’s digital culture, there is an incredible amount of data you could be gathering about each of your customers. Consider the following: ● Online ● Website behaviour ● Offer performance ● Mobile behaviour ● Display performance ● Search data ● Email performance ● Social media usage ● Off-line ● CRM ● Direct mail ● Broadcast ● Physical shops ● Call centres ● Loyalty programmes. But there’s an even bigger picture here. By bringing all this data together, you can start creating accurate maps of each customer’s journey. This is obviously invaluable to everyone in a company, but it’s especially important to email marketers. Because email is so ubiquitous - 43 per cent of respondents to one Adobe survey admitted to checking their email in the bathroom - it is with customers at every stage of their journey. This gives email marketers a key role in helping customers move toward purchase, loyalty and beyond. And since every step of that journey is a conversion, remarketing is the perfect tactic to rely on.

Trigger potential A second broad value that analytics brings to remarketing comes in the form of triggers preprogrammed criteria that

prompt an automated response. In the abandoned shopping trolley, the trigger is the customer leaving the site with products still in the basket. But with the much more detailed picture of the customer journey that your analytics can provide, suddenly the number of potential triggers is massive. Obvious examples are triggers like site or app abandonment, but with a comprehensive view like this, email marketers can start really pushing the boundaries of what remarketing can do. Maybe the customer started a video but never finished. Or they called your call centre and you want to follow up on their experience. Or they checked into your brick-andmortar store but never bought anything. With a little creativity, you can use triggers to both, your customer’s benefit and your own. “By improving the customer journey through personalisation and remarketing in real time, we’re helping to retain customers with 61 per cent of bookings coming from repeat Hostelworld customers,” says Otto Rosenberger, CMO at Hostelworld Group, who went from sending 300 emails to one billion every year. While some basic triggers - or trigger hacks - may be available in standard email platforms, the robust suite of triggers that gives you control of the whole customer journey is something only analytics can provide. Because analytics software is constantly monitoring customer behaviours across channels, it’s able to notice when the proper criteria has been met and then activate something like an email system. But analytics software does more than just identify triggers. As we saw with Hostelworld, it

helps you to take advantage of them with greater finesse. By allowing you to segment your audiences at any level of detail, you can act on specific triggers in ways that are appropriate to different audiences. Says Jenkins,“One company I worked with had a goal of driving in-app transactions with an emphasis on one particular method of transaction. The desired transaction required a higher commitment to the brand and app usage, however, so the audience was segmented based on past app engagement. Customers who had never transacted within the app were encouraged to adopt the lower commitment transaction, while customers who had transacted with the lower commitment method were encouraged to adopt the higher commitment transaction through benefit messaging.”

Way beyond the basket As you continue to invest in more powerful analytics and integrate it more fully with your email platform, your remarketing efforts - and your entire email marketing strategy - will leave the simple abandoned shopping trolley in the dust. Here are a few possibilities: Use context-driven cross-channel marketing. With analytics and email working together, you’re in a position to start applying the same principles to your messages through other channels. Especially as you deepen your understanding of your customer and gain better insights about their preferences and behaviours, you can keep in touch to them through the channels that make most sense with messages tailored for each specific context. Even better, you can keep in touch through different channels in a co-ordinated effort to reinforce the value you’re offering. And as they interact with you through different channels, your understanding of them will continue to develop and the cycle starts again again. “What you get is the ability to orchestrate a flow by resolving all the data to the individual first and then choosing the channel later. All your data goes in and when you want to send the cam-

paign to somebody, it doesn’t have to be in a single channel. For example, suppose you have a customer who does something you want to respond to, but that customer doesn’t always respond to your emails. The idea is that you can act on that behaviour through other channels too, using the same data,” says Cebrian, senior vice president of digital messaging at Merkle, Inc. For example, with detailed segments, Hostelworld can reach its customers through the right channel at the right time. If someone books a trip to Barcelona, Hostelworld can deliver recommendations for activities through banners or its mobile app. When the traveller reaches the city, the mobile app will offer further suggestions through push notifications. Take advantage of machine learning. Most companies have so many customers and such a flood of data that the ability of their data scientists to truly understand their customers is limited. Machine learning mitigates a lot of this by performing complex analysis that leads to real, actionable insights. Always make the right offer. With all this analytical horsepower, the ability of email marketers to understand the needs of individual customers is a reality. And this means that when a customer engages with you, you can automatically send an offer and know that it’s the right one. This ability to understand the context of each customer and respond to all of them automatically with a relevant and personal message is what email was born to do.

Welcome to the 21st century You may not be ready to launch a machine-led, analyticsrich remarketing campaign today and that’s okay. Start small. Focus on providing value to your customers and proving the value of your efforts up the chain. Build incrementally. Integrate datasets as they make sense. As you reimagine what remarketing could be, you can bring real value to your customers, which means real value to your company. Courtesy: adobe.com


IN FOCUS

Responsible tourism, key to travel decisions: ABTA Report ABTA’s Travel Trends 2019 report, released recently, highlighted that responsible tourism is now becoming an increasingly significant consideration when booking a holiday

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ravel Trends 2019 is based on market information and consumer insights, revealing five key trends expected to shape holiday choices in 2019 and highlighting ABTA’s “12 destinations to

watch”. It also identifies that, despite political uncertainty, people are committed to taking holidays and the desire to get a value-for-money break is also expected to influence holiday decisions over the next 12 months.

Mark Tanzer, ABTA chief executive said, “Sustainability issues are now firmly in the minds of holidaymakers, our research shows people are increasingly conscious of the positive influence they can have through their holi-

day booking choices and are more mindful of the actions they take. We expect these factors to further inform where and how they holiday next year. The travel industry has been working across a range of sustainability issues

for some time now and continue to develop plans and initiatives which support local communities, their economies and the environment. With four months to go until we leave the EU, Brexit is getting closer yet the polit-

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IN FOCUS

HIGHLIGHTS ● More than two-fifths (45 per cent) of people say the sustainability

credentials of their travel provider are important when booking a holiday this year – which has almost doubled over the last four years (24 per cent in 2014). ● Europe the number one destination people wish to visit in 2019 ● Desire to get value-for-money means packages are expected to be

popular

selling cruises and there has a strong uplift in travel professional homeworkers – so all in all, it looks like the trusted travel expert has a bright future.

People committed to holidays with Europe the top spot

ical process is still ongoing. Despite the uncertainty, early indications show people are still booking holidays, reflecting people’s strong commitment and desire to travel.”

Responsible tourism goes mainstream This past year has seen a number of sustainability issues move further into the public's consciousness - with much greater awareness of the impact of plastics on the environment on tourism’s impact on local communities. The uplift in awareness is also reflected in holidaymakers attitudes to companies – over a third (36 per cent) of people would opt for one travel business over another if they have

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a better environmental record – up 13 per cent since 2014 (23 per cent). Responsible tourism has risen further up the agenda and is becoming an integral part of business decisions and planning, with many companies announcing plans to make holidays more sustainable in the long term. Examples include TUI, Intrepid and G Adventures, who have recently announced plans to further support the local economy and local workers in the destinations they travel to. Thomas Cook is looking to remove 70 million pieces of single-use plastics within the next 12 months and Eurostar is targeting a 50 per cent reduction in plastics by 2020.

Resurgence of the trusted travel expert One of the main reasons holidaymakers book with a travel professional is because they feel more confident doing so (45 per cent)) and Travel Trends 2019 looks into the demand for personal, tailored and expert travel advice. In an age of limitless choice and information the service travel professionals provide is highly valued - offering a few well-selected holidays which meet the customer’s specific requirements. Travel companies such as Hays Travel and Barrhead Travel have announced an increase in stores, cruise companies are using travel agents more and more in recognition of the critical part they play in

Travel Trends 2019 also reveals that, despite the unprecedented political turbulence and uncertainty of the past year, Britons are firmly committed to taking holidays – with forward bookings for Summer 2019 12 per cent up on this time last year. Europe tops the list of places people plan to travel to in the next 12 months, with 61 per cent planning to take a trip to the continent next year. For example, Bulgaria and Greece are set to perform well with an increase in bookings for Summer 2019 of 30 per cent and 6 per cent, respectively. The desire to get a valuefor-money break is a growing priority, due to stretched household budgets and the continued weak Pound. Package holidays are likely to prove a popular choice in the search for good value, after three in five (60 per cent) people said they booked a package this year because it was the best option for the price.

Wellness travel is on the rise Wellness tourism is now worth an estimated US$ 639 billion globally, growing more than twice as fast as general tourism. With trips globally

up 20 per cent since 2015, travel companies are increasingly catering to the demand for wellness holidays, with companies such as G Adventures, Intrepid’s 18-29 brand and Uniworld offering new programmes which seek to alleviate stress and boost wellbeing.

The tailor-made package Increasing numbers of holidaymakers look to a package for a good value break, recognising it is often the best option for price, as well as appreciating the ease and consumer protection that comes with it. We’re also seeing travel companies introducing new ways to provide flexible and tailor-made holidays, including Kuoni’s Meraki Travel and Solo travel specialist Just You. This means travellers who want a bespoke trip can do so while still enjoying the protections and reassurances of a package, if they book services together in the same purchase.

Technology supports a seamless holiday experience Service based technology is making travellers lives easier – from the moment they leave their front door to their return to home soil. Airport luggage drop-off services, facial recognition technology replacing passports, suncream booths and a dedicated departure beach are some of the services being introduced to ensure holidaymakers have smoother journeys.


EVENT ROUNDUP

Going Beyond Boundaries in Kunming True to its theme, Tourism Beyond Boundaries, TAAI’s 65th annual convention crossed the India border (just two and a half hours from Kolkata) to Kunming, capital of the Yunnan Province in China. A mutually beneficial MoU with the YPTDC and a strong push towards tourism cooperation between the two countries made TAAI’s first convention in China truly a historic one. By Steena Joy

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HE 65TH ANNUAL convention of the Travel Agents Association of India was an historic one as it was the first time the association was organising it in China. The picturesque Kunming was the locale for the convention. Speaking at the pre event press briefing, Sunil Kumar, president, TAAI said, “This convention being organised in association with Yunnan Provincial Tourism Development Commission (YPTDC), China, will herald a new level of tourism ties

between the two nations. Around 20 students of the English Club of Yunnan University are voluteering at the convention. There is a large yoga institute in Kunming which was inaugurated by PM Narendra Modi. One can see here the connect between India and China. There are already four daily flights each between DelhiKunming and KolkataKunming. The presitigious MoU signed between TAAI and the YPTDC at the convention will only add to that connect and take bilateral ties even beyond the convention.” Around 485 TAAI delegates attended the convention.

The opening ceremony of the convention was held at the Haigeng Convention Centre in Kunming. The three-day convention was inaugurated by the vice governor of Yunnan Province, Li Malin in the presence of He Ligui, Director General of Tourism of Yunnan Province; Li Bijian, Minister and DCM, Embassy of China in New Delhi. Speaking at the opening Li Bijian said, ““Yunnan is an important tourism province in China. After many years of efforts, Yunnan has increased its visibility. Tourism contributes 7.5 per cent of our GDP. India is an important source market for China tourism and vice versa. So our

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EVENT ROUNDUP

two countries enjoy bright prospects for co-operation. We would like to play an important role in tourism cooperation between the two countries. With our continued efforts,our tourism co-operation will yield fruitful results. We can learn from each other and we can fly together.” According to Li Malin, "Both China and India are developing countries with rapid economic development, increased living standards of the people and a fast growing middle-class which have created golden opportunities for tourism development. India has emerged as an important source market for China, while China is the potential market to send travellers to India. Between India and China, there is a tourist market which is broad enough for both the sides to explore.” A combination of Chinese and Indian ethnicity and cul-

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ture dominated the entertainment at Kunming. TAAI's B2B India Travel Trade Expo (ITTE), had almost 50 per cent of the stalls were of Chinese suppliers. Tee off of the second TAAI Golf Tournament was held on November 27, 2018 at the Kunming Dianchi Lake View Golf Club. The two teams - players from India and China played to win the Sino-India TAAI Uni Top Golf Cup.

Knowledge sessions InterContinental Hotel Kunming, located close to the most famous Dianchi Lake, was the venue for the two days of Knowledge Sessions. The first session was by Prof John Koldowski, former deputy CEO, PATA and presently special advisor to CEO, PATA and professor of tourism at LSNU, China. He said, “A Russian dance troupe Mayuri pays homage to Lord Ganesha for an India

travel agents convention in China…this is what tourism beyond boundaries is all about.” He cautioned tarvel agents by saying, “We can look into the future but we need to be prepared for what it brings. The light at the end of the tunnel could be a train coming towards you!” Tourism receipts are falling from US$ 1036 to 2018 estimated US$ 891. According to UNWTO. Foreign arrivals into India has shown a CAGR of 10 per cent from 2013 to 2018 and is expected to show a CAGR of 10.9 per cent between 2018 to 2023. Prof Koldowski said that a mindset change is beyond mental borders: 19 million visitors into India in 2023 or one special visitor 19 million times? He urged travel agents to adopt and develop a Service Dominant Logic (SDL) Approach and to have an active social media marketing strategy.

While Kapil Bhatia, executive chairman, Interglobe in his industry insights advised TAAI members to have an open hearted approach when selling China to their customers, Rodney D’Cruz, head, IATA India spoke about the New Gen ISS and its impact. The second day of the convention began with a knowledge session on Digital Marketing by George Cao, co-founder and CEO, Dragon Trail Interactive. He said that there has been a paradigm shift from Search and Browse to Curate and Deliver. Customers have moved from agents to web/mobile search to chatbots or AI like Alexa, Echo and Google Assistant to try to find the travel products they need by themselves. He then elucidated on how agents in China are fighting this onslaught of OTAs and AI by using apps like We Chat. “We Chat can be used not just for consumer marketing but also

B2B marketing, for training and certification and online roadshows. 97 per cent of Chinese millennials share their travel experiences online usually through WeChat Moments. He advised: follow digital trends, experiment with new digital tools and platforms, create content online serve the entire journey and keep building trust. Lavonne Wittman, president, Skal International spoke on the power of symbiotic relationships to further enhance Tourism Beyond Boundaries. She said, “Customers today have eclectic tastes and different needs. As you are creating experiences for multi-generational segments, you need to have an intimate understanding of your customer’s needs.” Ashish Gupta, CEO, FAITH said, “Super segmentation is a good option. Keep discovering what your area of focus is.” He also recommended video branding of travel, use of more


EVENT ROUNDUP

visuals responsible product planning and basic automation like the Cruz robot at Kunming airport. He concluded by saying, “We should not be travel agents of yesterday but rather tourism agents of today.” Sunil Kumar suggested that TAAI will take the initiative of selecting top 100 agents of the association and with the support of Prof Koldowski and Cao, it will identify top 100 Chinese travel agents and together form a Co-operation Forum with the government's permission for both outbound and inbound tourism to promote sustainable tourism. Carl Vaz, chairman and CEO, Charson Advisory Services gave a presentation on

Optimising Travel for the small and medium sized travel agencies. He said, “Travel agents use your size to your advantage. Offer dynamic packaging to your customers like great 'selfie' locations, best attractions/sites that are free, etc. Use technology to make your own profile with Vlogs, Podcasts, etc. Go that 'extra mile' for your customer.” He cautioned associations about being outmaneuvered, “You need to be 'guardians' of the travel and tourism eco system. You need to engage with stakeholders beyond the immediate boundaries of travel. Engage with hospitality services and go with the flow of our Prime Minister's HR and Skill Development agenda.”

The last Knowledge Session was by Kapil Kaul, CEO India and ME, CAPA who spoke on the airline industry. He said, “Global airline profitability is at record levels they are meeting cost of capital after more than 50 years with North America accounting for 45 per cent of global profits. But global airlines continue to struggle. Consolidation is the key.” He stated that aviation's centre of gravity is shifting to Asia Pacific. “Airlines will be more like technology companies that happen to operate airplanes. India is THE aviation market for the 21st century,” he said. Kaul felt that the profitability and sustainability of travel agents will require a complete

redesign of their business model and consolidation of the industry. He suggested that TAAI should establish an online market place to distribute non-air products on a common platform following a non-profit SITA type model, using the margins to invest in technology and promote the benefits

of using travel agents for travel decisions. Post and pre tours were arranged by TAAI to Dali, Yuxi and Lijiang. In addition, there were city tours and tours to the Sleeping Beauty in the Western mountains and the Stone Forest and Caves, karst formation.

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CONSERVATION

Muziris Paddle 2019: An awareness about river conservation The paddling event promotes the usage of our rivers for recreational usage and creates a connection to the river with youngsters and tourists

M

uziris Paddle, the two-day kayaking expedition organised by Jellyfish Watersports in partnership with Muziris Heritage Project (Kerala Tourism) will be held on January 5 and 6, 2019. Over 200 paddlers are likely to participate in the event which will be flagged off from the Kotturpuram Jetty in Kodungalloor district and end at Bolgatty Island in Kochi. Being touted as one of Kerala’s most incredible nature experiences the event targets domestic and international tourists, paddling enthusiasts, people from all walks of life, children and even nonswimmers. Muziris, once a bustling seaport and the heart of the historic spice route used to be the key trade point between southern India and rest of the world. The region is dotted with numerous monuments of a bygone era that is more than 3,000 years old. Participants will get an opportunity to visit the legendary Muziris heritage sites on the way. The paddling event promotes the usage of our rivers for recreational usage and creates a connection to the river with youngsters and tourists. The kayakers will cover overall distance of 40 km traversing through rivers, backwaters and important Muziris destinations en route. Each day they will cover an easy distance of 20 km with several strategic breaks for sightseeing and greeting locals. The entire expedition will be managed

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by Jellyfish Watersports and participants will learn skills from expert trainers and river guides. The package includes Kayak rental, expert guidance, camping gears, lifeguard support, night camping, team activities and food and refreshments. “For centuries locals and visitors have enjoyed the scenic natural paradise of Gods own country. Muziris Paddle is a great way to experience Kerala through its water bodies and be part of the growing eco and responsible tourism initiatives. We have conducted several river expeditions and clean up initiatives in the past that have been immensely popular amongst nature enthusiasts locally and internationally. Kayak for a cause is helping in creating more awareness about the conservation of river and to retain its original beauty,” says Kaushiq Kodithodi, founder, Jellyfish Watersports.


MOVEMENTS Government of Canada ANNIE DUBÉ, MIA YEN, and NICOLE GIRARD have assumed their offices as Consul General for Canada to India, in the cities of Mumbai, Chandigarh and Bengaluru respectively. Dubé joined the Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade in 2003. This is her second stint in India. Prior to coming to India, she was the deputy

Annie Dubé

director of the EU Commercial Relations and Advocacy Division from 2016 to 2017. Yen has served as legislative analyst at the embassy in Washington, D.C., and trade commissioner in Kuala Lumpur. In 2012, she began serving in Myanmar, where she was tasked with setting up Canada’s new embassy in the country. She was Canada’s first-ever resident chargé d’affaires there before becoming senior trade commissioner and head of mission administration. Girard joined the Department of Employment and Immigration in 1989. In Ottawa, she held assignments related to immigration enforcement, strategic policy and refugee policy. In her most recent Headquarters position, she was director general of citizenship and multiculturalism policy.

Sheraton Grand Bangalore Hotel at Brigade Gateway Sheraton Grand Bangalore Hotel at Brigade Gateway has appointed the following personnel:

of director of sales at Fairfield by Marriott Rajajinagar. MYLO LALLAWMUALI as the new Spa Manager at ‘Shine Spa for Sheraton.’ She

Airbus MICHAEL SCHÖLLHORN, 53, has been appointed as chief operating officer for Airbus Commercial Aircraft, effective February 1, 2019. Schöllhorn, currently COO for BSH Home Appliances GmbH in Munich, will succeed Tom Williams, 66, who retires after 50 years in the aerospace industry, 19 of which were in top Airbus management positions. Schöllhorn’s wealth of diverse manufacturing and production expertise was gained from 1999 at the Bosch Group.

Mylo Lallawmuali

will be responsible for all operational aspects of the spa as well as the fitness center and spearheading the development of both, Shine Spa for Sheraton and Sheraton Fitness. She will also focus on ensuring the highest levels of service delivery by aligning spa menus, signature treatments.

MALVIKA GODIKA to the post of assistant director of finance. She has worked with a few of hospitality brands including Fairmont Jaipur for four years, before moving to Sheraton Grand Bangalore Hotel at Brigade Gateway, with which she has been associated for two years.

Ultra Lounge. destination. In his role he will be responsible for overseeing the restaurant’s dining venues, catering and culinary events, as well as further enhancing the restaurant’s celebrated culinary offerings.

AMIT KOBAT as manager of Food and Beverage. He comes with experience of over 10 years in restaurant management, and is all set to revolutionise the functioning of the hotel’s restaurants – Feast, The Persian Terrace, Bene, Alfresco by Bene and High Ultra Lounge, in addition to its banqueting facilities. CHEF TENZIN NAMKHA as chef de cuisine at HIGH

AccorHotels has appointed RANJU SINGH as the complex general manager of Novotel Goa Shrem Hotel and Novotel Goa Resort & Spa. A seasoned hotelier, Singh brings with him over 25 years of rich hospitality experience with several brands including Taj and Hyatt Hotels. Prior to joining AccorHotels, he was the general manager at Taj Holiday Village Resort & Spa, Goa.

Chef Tenzin Namkha

Ranju Singh

AccorHotels

Mia Yen

Ashok Sivashankar

Radhika Dewan

Nicole Girard

RADHIKA DEWAN as director of sales. She comes with over 10 years of experience in sales and marketing domain with commendable knowledge and expertise. Prior to Sheraton Grand Bangalore Hotel at Brigade Gateway, Dewan held the position

ASHOK SIVASHANKAR as director of rooms to manage day-to-day room operations and guest relationship. Ashok comes with over 16 years of experience and has successfully carried out his responsibilities at various established hotel chains. At Sheraton Grand, he is entrusted to elevate guest experience and room operations.

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weekend

E V E N T S

FOUR IN A ROW GVK Lounge by TFS won the World’s Best Lounge for the

CORPORATE GOVERNANCE Beejal Desai, senior vice president - legal and

fourth time in a row at the World Travel Awards 2018

company secretary, IHCL and Puneet Chhatwal, managing director & CEO, IHCL receiving the Best Corporate Governance award in Asia in the Leisure & Hospitality category at this year’s Ethical Boardroom Corporate Governance Awards

CELEBRATING INCLUSION Vinod Tawde, education minister; David Green, VC, University of Worcester; Dr Swaroop Sampat Rawal, educationalist and Bollywood actress; Paresh Rawal, actor and Member of Parliament and Dr Vijendra Vikhe Patil at the felicitation ceremony “Celebrating Inclusion” by University Of Worcester to honour work in the field of education

ATTA'S ASIA DEBUT Captain Swadesh Kumar (president, ATOAI), Hari Ranjan Rao (IAS) (principal secretary tourism and managing director, Madhya Pradesh Tourism Board), Suman Billa (joint secretary, ministry of tourism, Government of India), Shannon Stowell (CEO, ATTA), Jack Finifrock (regional director ATTA) and Akshay Kumar (chairman, AdventureNEXT committee) at the first AdventureNEXT in Asia, held in Bhopal

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REGD.WITH RNI NO. MAHENG/2005/15993,POSTAL REGD. NO. MCS/163/2016 – 18, PUBLISHED ON 11TH EVERY MONTH, POSTED ON 12TH,13TH,14TH OF EVERY MONTH, POSTED AT MUMBAI PATRIKA CHANNEL SORTING OFFICE,MUMBAI – 400001.

Profile for Indian Express

Express Travelworld (Vol.13, No.11) December, 2018  

India's Foremost Travel Business Magazine

Express Travelworld (Vol.13, No.11) December, 2018  

India's Foremost Travel Business Magazine

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