Category Archives: Incentives

Marriott to unveil unified loyalty programmes for members

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Marriott International will introduce one set of unified benefits across Marriott Rewards, The Ritz-Carlton Rewards and Starwood Preferred Guest (SPG) for its members in August 2018. This will create an incredibly rich hospitality loyalty programme in which members will earn more points faster than under the prior programmes — on average 20 per cent more points for every dollar spent. For the first time, members will have access to book stays and earn or redeem points among 29 participating global brands comprising 6,500 hotels in 127 countries and territories. Additionally, the Moments experiential platform is expanding, with more than 110,000 experiences in 1,000 destinations from must-see attraction tickets and tours for purchase with cash by all guests, to once-in-a-lifetime events only available to members using points, including the new bespoke Moments Live event series. David Flueck, Senior Vice President of Global Loyalty, Marriott International, said,  “We are excited to announce that this August, our members can enjoy one set of benefits across our extraordinary portfolio of hotels from iconic full and select service, to extended stay, to unique boutiques and luxury brands.” Beginning in August, members will be able to combine their separate Marriott Rewards, The Ritz-Carlton Rewards and SPG accounts into a single account spanning the entire loyalty portfolio. The Marriott Rewards, The Ritz-Carlton Rewards and Starwood Preferred Guest (SPG) names will continue to live on under the new set of unified benefits until a new program name is introduced in 2019.

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Israel Tourism collaborates with Ola to attract travellers from India

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Israel Ministry of Tourism has joined hands with Ola cabs in India to collaborate on a two-week contest that will run on the Ola app which is valid for its Mumbai and Pune users only. The Ola users who undertake the maximum number of rides during the two weeks period and use code ISRAEL stand a chance to win a free trip to Israel for 3nights/4 days. Utilising Push notifications, in-App promotion, e-mailers (Mumbai and Pune database), Ola Website (Blog) and their Social Media pages, the ride-sharing company will promote the contest. Talking more about the association Hassan Madah, Director – Israel Ministry of Tourism, India & Philippines said, “Ola is one of the largest taxi services in India and have a large user base, especially in metro cities. Today, many urban dwellers use the services of taxi hiring in big cities as it is convenient. We are always thinking of distinct ways to promote Israel and felt this association with Ola cabs will help us reach Ola’s over 80 lakh users in Mumbai and Pune. We look forward to creating more awareness of the beautiful destination among Ola users so that they can plan a trip soon to Israel.” Israel has welcomed close to 10,000 Indian travellers between January and March, resulting in a 15% increase in Indian tourists arrivals compared to the same period in 2016. With the recent addition of Air India’s direct connection from Delhi to Tel Aviv, Israel hopes to witness one lakh Indian tourist arrivals in 2018.

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Cox & Kings collaborates with VisitBritain

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Cox & Kings has collaborated with VisitBritain to promote Great Britain in India. The joint marketing collaboration will publicise Great Britain through advertisements and contests in the Indian market. The campaign focuses on the varied offerings of Great Britain including its signature rail journeys, delectable cuisine and experiential tours. To popularise the campaign further and garner participation across digital platforms, a unique contest with hashtags #LoveToTravel and #ExploreFourCorners were launched. Cox & Kings along with VisitBritain rolled out the #LoveToTravel contest to encourage travellers to share their travel experience on social media. Special prizes including a free trip to Great Britain were announced for those with the most innovative travel video and pitch. Karan Anand, Head, Relationships, Cox & Kings, said,” Indians love Great Britain for its picturesque countryside and most alluring experiences. We bring to our clientele a wide range of travel experiences that largely remain undiscovered. The campaign has successfully attracted the attention of the discerning travellers in India. We are glad to promote Great Britain not only as a summer destination but a year-round one.”  

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Foreign tourist arrival witnesses a growth of 13.4% in March YOY

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Foreign Tourist Arrivals (FTAs) this March were 10.26 lakh as compared to FTAs of 9.05 lakh in March 2017, according to the latest data released by the Ministry of Tourism. FTAs during the period January-March 2018 were 31.27 lakh with a growth of 9.9 per cent over the same period of previous year. The percentage share of FTAs in India during March 2018 among the top 15 source countries was highest from Bangladesh (19.59 per cent) followed by UK (11.56 per cent), USA (10.79 per cent), Russian Federation (3.89 per cent), Sri Lanka (3.72 per cent), Malaysia (3.36 per cent), Canada (3.35 per cent), Germany (3.19 per cent), China (2.67 per cent), Australia (2.62 per cent), France (2.58 per cent), Japan (2.11 per cent), Thailand (2.00 per cent), Singapore (1.64 per cent) and Afghanistan (1.60 per cent).

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ICPB to promote India as venue for conferences and exhibitions: K. J. Alphons

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The Ministry of Tourism has recognised Meetings, Incentives, Conventions and Exhibitions (MICE) as a niche tourism product in order to overcome the problem of seasonality and to promote India as a 365 days’ destination. The India Convention Promotion Bureau (ICPB) has been set up under the patronage of the Ministry of Tourism to promote India as a venue for International Conferences and Exhibitions. This non-profit organization, with members comprising national airlines, hotels, travel agents, tour operators, tourist transport operators, conference organizers, etc. participate in international MICE trade fairs like IMEX in Frankfurt and Las Vegas, EIBTM- Barcelona and AIME- Melbourne along with the India Tourism overseas offices. India is also being promoted as a preferred MICE destination through the Global Incredible India media campaign and through road shows and seminars conducted by the India Tourism offices overseas. Ministry of Tourism also provides Central Financial Assistance to the State Governments/UT Administrations for development of tourism infrastructure including the setting up of convention centres under the existing schemes. This information was given by K. J. Alphons, Union Minister of State (I/C) for Tourism in a written reply in Rajya Sabha.

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Singapore Airlines unveils new regional cabin products for B787-10

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Singapore Airlines (SIA) has launched the next generation of regional cabin products for its new Boeing 787-10 fleet, which will redefine travel on flights up to eight hours. The new cabin products feature fully-flat beds and direct aisle access for all Business Class customers, ergonomically-designed contour backrests with six-way adjustable headrests in Economy Class, and personalised in-flight entertainment (IFE) experience for all customers through myKrisWorld. The new 787-10s are configured with 337 seats in two classes, featuring 36 Business Class seats and 301 Economy Class seats.

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Travelport joins hand with Air France KLM

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Travelport and Air France KLM have signed an agreement for the distribution of content through Travelport’s platform and deployment of new technology with the airline. Air France, KLM and HOP! content on Travelport’s platform will include Travelport’s leading rich content, branded fares, fare families and multiple ancillaries.  Derek Sharp, Travelport’s Senior Vice President and Managing Director for Air Commerce, says: “We are delighted to have signed this agreement with Air France KLM, one of Europe’s leading airline groups. This is an extension of a long-term relationship which has delivered greater choice to Air France KLM’s customers. We look forward to a continuing productive partnership as we deploy new technology with the airline.” This agreement also enables customers selected by Air France HOP! and KLM to access a private channel via Travelport through which they will receive content without the additional distribution surcharge levied by Air France KLM starting April 1, 2018.  Travelport is the only operator of a GDS with the highest level of IATA certification for the deployment of its NDC technology.

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Foreign exchange sees 10.2 per cent surge in February

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According to the data released by Ministry of Tourism, Foreign Exchange Earnings (FEEs) during the month of February 2018 were ₹17, 407 crore as compared to ₹15,790 crore in February 2017 and ₹13,661 crore in February 2016. The growth rate in FEEs in February 2018 over February 2017 was 10.2 per cent, compared to the growth of 15.6 per cent in February 2017 over February 2016. The FEEs during the period of January-February 2018 were ₹35,132 crore with a growth of 10.0 per cent, as compared to the FEE of ₹31,925 crore in January-February 2017 with a growth of 16.8 per cent over January- February 2016.

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Travel Tours opens second store in Kolkata

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Travel Tours, the flagship leisure travel brand of FCM Travel Solutions, has inaugurated their second retail and first franchise store at Salt Lake City, Kolkata. The store was inaugurated by Shravan Gupta, Executive Director – Leisure Businesses, FCM Travel Solutions and Sitaram Sharma, President, Bharat Chamber of Commerce & The Consular General of Belarus. With the launch of this store, FCM Travel Solutions now has 28 operational Travel Tours stores across India. The new Travel Tours store in Kolkata aims at redefining travel experience from the region by focusing on both tailor-made vacations and group holidays catering to different kinds of travellers in the city. Spread over 1200 sq. ft., the outlet at Salt Lake City will cater to needs of up-market urban consumers – families, business travellers, honeymoon couples and groups of travellers. The new retail outlet will offer a range of products and services – domestic and international flights, customised and group holidays, hotels, car transfers, visa, cruise vacations, honeymoon packages, adventure holidays and more. Commenting on the launch, Gupta said, “Our second store in Kolkata is a reiteration of our strategic intent at Travel Tours, FCM to expand our footprint across key markets in East India. Through this launch, we aim to provide unbeatable travel experiences to our patrons in an untapped market.”    

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FICCI-KPMG Knowledge Paper lays focus on tech-savvy Indian traveller

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FICCI and KPMG India have jointly unveiled the knowledge paper ‘Expedition 3.0- Travel & Hospitality Gone Digital’ at the recently-held  Digital Travel, Hospitality & Innovation Summit. The paper aims to unravel the technology trends in travel and hospitality segment to define the future of the industry, how digitalisation impacted the evolution of the industry and what can be achieved by overall technology inclusion across stakeholders in the industry ecosystem. Some of the key highlights of the paper reveal that most travellers go online, and 67 per cent even use voice search for research; 71 per cent use smartphones for research and booking, and 82 per cent prefer digital boarding passes and e-tickets for convenience; 87 per cent use videos and photos posted by friends as part of their travel research while 83 per cent want to be connected while travelling; 85 per cent use price comparison websites to look for deals, and 58 per cent agree spending considerable time to find best price; 91 per cent use review sites; and 75 per cent choose hotels that do not charge for Wi-Fi.

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