Tag Archives: Australia

AccorHotels Showcase, India travels to Delhi and Mumbai


The 2018 AccorHotels Showcase in Mumbai and New Delhi will be held on March 21 at Sofitel Mumbai BKC and March 23 at Pullman New Delhi Aerocity respectively. The event is expected to have representatives from 15 countries representing more than 35 hotels and resorts worldwide, offering travel agents, wholesalers, corporate clients, tourism partners and MICE organisers’ an insight into the group’s new developments, products and services. “The signature event serves as a great platform for us to interact and share knowledge with our clients and industry partners. With increased international and domestic travel, we expect this year to be the bigger and more exciting than last year, with interesting insights given our enhanced network and leadership position in the Asia Pacific region,” said Arif Patel, Vice President—Sales, Marketing, Distribution & Loyalty, AccorHotels India. Entering its 15th year, the event will provide an opportunity to discover AccorHotels’ accommodation trends, news and stunning hotels and resorts from around the world. Exhibitors from destinations such as France, Spain, Netherlands, Turkey, Thailand, UAE, South Korea, Australia, New Zealand, Switzerland, Azerbaijan, Saudi Arabia, China and Singapore, representing celebrated hotels like Raffles Dubai and Saudi Arabia, RIXOS Turkey, Fairmont Ajman, SO Sofitel Bangkok Singapore, Novotel Amsterdam City and Novotel Amsterdam Schiphol Airport, and more are set to attend the event in each city.

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Emirates Skywards reaches 20 mn members


Emirates Skywards, a loyalty programme popular for its unique offerings has reached 20 million members. Those travelling from Dubai on Emirates flights during the week beginning March 4, 2018, can look forward to surprises at check-in, onboard and in the lounges for some of its longest-standing members. “The programme has evolved in the 17 years since its inception in line with changing travel and lifestyle habits. Emirates Skywards is focused on delivering ever more personalised experiences for its members. We provide a wide array of earn and redeem options across a number of categories – travel, retail and lifestyle and across geographies, leveraging more than 100 partners worldwide,” explains Dr Nejib Ben Khedher, Senior Vice President, Emirates Skywards. In an average month, Emirates Skywards welcomes 220,000 new members across the globe. The top five countries with the largest member bases are spread across four continents reflecting Emirates’ six-continent global network. UK has the biggest membership base at 2.6 million, followed by the US with 1.8 million members, Australia with 1.7 million members and India and the UAE following closely with 1.4 million members each.  

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2nd edition of the Travel Business Show kicks off in Gurugram

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The 2nd edition of the Travel Business Show, an exclusive MICE event, was held from December 2 –3, 2017, at the Le Meridien Gurgaon. The show was inaugurated by Ma. Teresita C. Daza, Ambassador of Philippines to India, who was also the Chief Guest of the evening. Tourism and MICE continues to be a great contributor to the economy of nations, Daza said. “In 2016, the Philippines economy grew by 6.8 per cent, faster than 5.9 per cent expansion in 2015.  In the third quarter of 2017, it grew by 6.9 per cent. Travel and tourism are important contributing factors for the economy. The sector contributed about 8.6 per cent to the country’s GDP in 2016. The top source markets for the Philippines from Asia include China, Japan, South Korea and Taiwan.  Currently, India ranks as the 12th largest source market for the Philippines. Many Indians visit Manila, Cebu, Palawan, Angeles and Boracay,” she informed. Giving an insight in the popularity of the Philippines as a destination for Indians, she added, “In 2016, the record of Indian arrivals in the Philippines was 90,000, which is an average of about 246 Indian passengers per day.  This number of Indian arrivals is very encouraging, despite visa requirements for Indians travelling to the Philippines.” Giving a synopsis of mega MICE events in the Philippines, she said, “Aside from leisure travel, the Philippines has also been witnessing an immense contribution of  the Meetings, Incentives, Conferences and Events (MICE) segment into the growth of the Philippines tourism industry. The Philippines successfully conducted the ‘Miss Universe Contest’ earlier this year. More importantly in November, the Philippines hosted the 31st ASEAN Summit and related conferences where 21 leaders including Narendra Modi, Prime Minister of India, came to …

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AVANI launches AVANIme for experiential travellers


AVANI Hotels & Resorts has introduced an outreach marketing strategy to engage with travellers. The campaign, named AVANIme, is a wired-in experience for modern explorers, giving insight into local culture, cool hotspots and travel tips about urban cities and in some cases, off-the-beaten track destinations. Alejandro Bernabe, Vice President AVANI Hotels & Resorts said: “We understand that travel isn’t only about where you stay. It’s also about experiencing the destination and AVANI aims to help travellers navigate cities like the locals and who better to show them the inside scoop than a hometown celebrity.” A series of #24HRSWITHME Youtube videos are being filmed with local well known personalities. A series of creative online and offline motifs have also been developed to express through imagery and words, the creative and playful character of AVANI. These adverts are featured in travel magazines, online and on the brand’s social media channels. In addition, AVANI partnered with well-known travel bloggers from Germany, Australia, Portugal and Thailand. These well-travelled influencers have journeyed to Vietnam, Portugal, Thailand and Sri Lanka. Followers feel as if they’re travelling alongside each travel blogger, as their posts are beautifully descriptive and their photographs capture the essence of their experiences. Each journey offers true insights into the culture, cuisine and character of the people. Bernabe concludes, “By collaborating with local celebrities, travel writers, photographers and magazines we are able to tell our brand story in a manner which is relevant to our audience – or to reach a new audience. It has been exhilarating to work with magazines and personalities who have an affinity for the brand’s more youthful expression and it has provided us with an interesting way to engage …

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FCM introduces international group tours


FCM Travel Solutions, the Indian subsidiary of Flight Centre Travel Group (FCTG), Australia, under its retail leisure arm ‘Flight Shop’ has launched Group Inclusive Tours (GITs) in the country. Foraying into the segment, Flight Shop has introduced new exclusive itineraries to Europe specially designed for large group travellers. The service will also offer customers the flexibility to choose dates and destinations in its group tours. Shravan Gupta, Executive Director, Leisure Businesses, FCM Travel Solutions, Indian subsidiary of FCTG, Australia, said, “GITs are the biggest segment in the organised travel sector and are growing at 10-12 per cent every year. Travelling in a group costs lesser and is around 20-30 per cent cheaper than travelling solo to any destination. At Flight Shop, we believe that we have the required land and cruise holidays’ expertise to organise unbeatable group tour experiences for Indian travellers. While we want to experiment with the flexible tour concept, which is a pioneering concept in India, our GITs will have fixed departure dates and conventional packages too.” Offering travellers the opportunity to leverage and make the most of the services, Flight Shop has announced ‘Europe on Sale’ Campaign as an introductory offering to their customers. Flight Shop has curated over 200 Europe Group Tour itineraries with departures beginning from April 2018. Flight Shop specialists can also provide individual customisation of itineraries for travellers requiring extensions on a trip, etc. Groups are also eligible for discounted deals on ‘Europe on Sale’ itineraries until December 10, 2017. Each tour group will include – Return Economy Airfare with Taxes, Visas, Insurance, Accommodation in Standard Hotels, Meals & Sightseeing.  

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FCM launches next generation technology suite, FCM Connect


A streamlined travel programme to provide a better and more efficient business travel experience has been launched by FCM Travel Solutions to ensure that travellers, bookers and managers have greater connectivity. FCM Connect is an integrated global technology platform which gives clients access to multiple tools that deliver on their travel program. “We believe technology should move our customers forward, and the next generation release of our technology offering, FCM Connect, is designed to do just that,” said Marcus Eklund, Global Brand Leader, FCM Travel Solutions. “We’re excited to launch FCM Connect to existing and new customers. Our improved solution has been designed for the modern Traveller, Booker and Programme Manager and addresses their desire to be more connected to the entire booking, travel and management journey. Being better connected helps travellers and bookers feel in control and gives our programme managers the visibility they need to elevate their travel programmes,” Eklund said. At the core of the solution is the FCM Connect HUB; a single-sign-on platform that gives customers one simple connection point to all of FCM’s leading technology tools including Analytics, Approve, Booking, Secure, Expense and Mobile. HUB is easily customisable for each company in both configuration of tools used and interface design. “Through extensive customer consultation and product development, we’ve refined a world-class, end-to-end solution that ensures all of our customer’s travel needs are organised – from pre-trip approval to booking, to traveller tracking and reporting that provides complete visibility of spend,” Eklund said. FCM Connect was previewed to clients and industry earlier in the year at the London Business Travel Show and Global Business Travel Association Conference in Sydney, Australia. FCM Connect is now available and …

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Oman eases visa rules for Indians


Oman is granting non-sponsored tourist visa for the citizens of India, China and Russia who reside in or hold an entry visa to one of these countries – USA, Canada, Australia, UK and Schengen states – to enter the Sultanate of Oman. These revised terms and conditions were issued by the Omani authorities. The issued statement indicated that the visa shall be granted for a period of one month for a fee of OMR 20. The spouse and children of the visa holder would also be allowed to enter the Sultanate while accompanying them. Applicants must also have a return ticket and confirmed hotel reservation in order to be granted the visa. Salim Adi Al Mamari, Director General of Tourism Promotion, from the Ministry of Tourism in Oman, said, “With the revision in visa regulations, we are expecting that Indian arrivals across all segments will grow exponentially – especially leisure and visitors to conventions and exhibitions. We aim to expand our travel and tourism offerings and are certain that the revised policies will offer expediency and convenience to travellers and will encourage more impromptu trips to the Sultanate.” Lubaina Sheerazi, India Representative, Ministry of Tourism, Oman, said, “The outbound segment in India is on a rise with the Indian economy booming and increasingly better standards of living. Most Indians typically travel for three to five nights as they want to experience Muscat and beyond. We are certain that the recent change in policies will be favourable for the Indian travellers and Sultanate will see a positive growth in this upcoming festive and holiday season.”  

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Asia-Pacific sees growth in the meetings and events space: CWT


A report on future trends in the meetings and events space by the CWT Meetings & Events (CWT M&E), a division of global travel management company Carlson Wagonlit Travel, revealed that the overall cost per attendee per day for meetings and events around the globe increased in 2017 and is expected to continue rising next year. Titled as 2018 Meetings and Events Future Trend, the report also looks into regional differences and cost projections, as well as the latest industry trends and top destinations. According to the report, the cost per attendee per day for meetings and events in Asia Pacific has increased by 5 per cent in 2017, the greatest for any region globally. It stated that the prices are not changing much in Asia Pacific, for either hotels or air fares, with a surge of 3.5 per cent and 2.8 per cent respectively. The top 10 destinations for meetings & events in Asia Pacific in 2017 as in the report are as follows: 1. Singapore 2. Sydney, Australia 3. Bangkok, Thailand 4. Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia 5. Hong Kong 6. Shanghai, China 7. Melbourne, Australia 8. Tokyo, Japan 9. Mumbai, India 10. Seoul, South Korea

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4th MPTM from Oct 27-29 in Bhopal


The 4th edition of Madhya Pradesh Travel Mart (MPTM) will be held from October 27-29, 2017, in Bhopal, informed Hari Ranjan Rao, Secretary, Tourism and Public Service Management and Managing Director, Madhya Pradesh State Tourism Development Corporation. Over 200 national and international buyers and around 100 exhibitors of distinct Indian markets are expected to participate in the mart. With the theme, Seek-Discover-Explore, the mart will offer a B2B platform to bring together tourism stakeholders and representatives from heritage hotels, conference venues, tour operators and wildlife parks etc. The mart is supported by various trade organisations, like ADTOI, ATTOI, IATO, FAITH, TAAI and TAFI. Rao informed that this year, the number of attendees to the mart is expected to cross over 9 crore. International participants attending the show include representatives from Singapore, Spain, the UK, the US, the Netherlands, Germany, Norway, Thailand, Poland, Austria, Australia, France etc. Rao said, “The travel mart is an opportunity in which the tourism aspects of the state and the policies ad schemes are conveyed to the investors. In the last three years of the travel mart in Bhopal, it has been experienced that through this one-to-one discussion with tourists, tourism, hospitality and participants of the hotel industry, the efforts being made for the expansion of the area are also being underlined.

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Indian visa to cost 50% more


The Indian government has reportedly increased the visa fee in different categories for nationals from the US, the UK, Canada, Israel, Iran and UAE. As per a government notification, a tourist visa up to one year will now cost $153 from the earlier $100. The tourist visa for over a year and up to five years will cost $306 instead of $120. Mainly affecting foreigners who work in the country, the move comes about as a reciprocal measure, since countries like the US, New Zealand, and Australia have planned or already implemented such processes. However, UK nationals, who used to cough up $162 for a tourist visa up to a year, will now pay $248. And for a five year tourist visa, they will pay $741 instead of $484. For employment visa, nationals from Canada, Ireland, France, Australia, New Zealand, and Thailand will now pay $459 instead of $300 for a visa spanning over a year and up to five years. Israelis continue to cough up the most for a short-term visa. They will now pay $1,714 instead of $1,120.

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