INDIGO strengthen regional connectivity

indigoIndiGo is amongst the fastest growing low-cost carriers in the world. IndiGo has a simple philosophy: offer fares that are low, flights that are on time, offering a courteous, hygienic, and hassle-free travel experience. With its fleet of 284 aircraft, the airline is operating over 1100 daily flights and connecting 60 domestic destinations and 6 international destinations.

In its bid to strengthen regional connectivity, the airline has announced 22 new flights connecting key regional cities in India, From March 28  the airlines will operate new flights between Agartala – Aizawl under RCS scheme and exclusive flights between Bhubaneswar-Patna, Jaipur-Vadodara, Chennai-Vadodara, Bengaluru-Shirdi, Patna-Kochi, and Rajahmundry-Tirupati. IndiGo will be also be commencing flights between Kolkata-Gaya, Cochin Trivandrum, Jaipur-Surat, Chennai-Surat.

For more information, please visit www.goIndiGo.in.

India extends restriction on international flights until 28 February

indiaflightsAs per a recent circular from the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA), the Indian government has extended the embargo on international commercial flights until 28 February. Earlier, this prohibitions on scheduled overseas flights was supposed to end on 31 January after a ten-month gap. International scheduled flights may be allowed on selected routes by the competent authority on a case-to-case basis, the DGCA circular informs.

Civil aviation watchdog has reportedly stated dedicated cargo flights and those specifically allowed by the civil aviation regulator such as flights under the bilateral air bubble pacts with select countries will continue to operate.

India currently has bilateral air bubble agreement with about 24 countries, which include countries like Afghanistan, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Canada, Ethiopia, France, Germany, Iraq, Japan, Kenya, Kuwait, Maldives, Nepal, Netherlands, Nigeria, Oman, Qatar, Rwanda, Tanzania, Ukraine, the UAE, UK, and the US.

INDIA – AUSTRALIA CRICKET

cricketThe recent cricket between the two arch rivals ended as a triumph for India with e visitors retaining the Border Gavaskar Trophy after a sensational 2-1 win over the hosts and also winning the T20 series 2-1 while losing the One Day internationals 2-1. However it was a big win for the game of cricket, particularly at a difficult time because of COVID 19 issues.

The tour was very well organized by Cricket Australia.  While looking at some of the inviting Aussie landscapes on television during the television coverage of the matches in India, the desire to visit down under at the end of the COVID19 pandemic surely intensified among many of the potential Indian travellers. This is encouraging for Tourism Australia as India is one of their top markets.

Dekho Apna Desh Webinars by Ministry of Tourism, India

dekhoThe Dekho Apna Desh campaign embracing a series of webinars around various destinations, experiences and travel itineraries was launched by the Ministry of Tourism in India in January last year primarily to lift domestic travel, but also to keep the international market inspired about the uniqueness and features of its multiple offerings. With over 70 webinars presented so far, the campaign has been a triumphant success in cultivating excitement for its many lesser-known destination treasures.

All the past workshop recordings are available for viewing online.

While presenting destinations from across the country, these webinars are also connecting viewers with India’s rick and vibrant history, cultural heritage, handicrafts and cuisine varieties. The campaign includes such rare and beautiful Indian destinations and itineraries such as

City of Cities – Delhi’s Personal Diary”, “The Monuments of Mammallapuram – Stories Etched in Stone”, “Ladakh – Explore the Unexplored”, “New Age Women in Responsible Tourism” , “India – A Golfers’ Paradise” “Memoirs of 1857 – A Prelude to Independence, “Secrets and Delights of Indian Cuisine”,”Exploring Buddhist Circuit by Train” and many more

With Covid 19 restrictions easing these Indian hotspots are becoming so popular due to Dekho Apna Desh, that some are already sold out for months.  It is understood Ministry of Tourism will soon be releasing itineraries, mobile applications, print calendars, and more promotional materials as the program continues to build.

Not only does the campaign enthuse you to visit different tourist locations in the country but also gives you a financial incentive. According to the Dekho Apna Desh Pledge campaign, avid travellers who are able to visit at least 15 tourist destinations spread across different parts of the country by the year 2022 will be given an exciting prize which might include tour packages and tickets to exotic places.

 

KTM VIRTUAL 2021

keralaA great opportunity to revisit Kerala – Gods own Country – virtually from 01st to 05th March 2021 when the first edition of of KTM Virtual Mart 2021 will be held to rebuild the tourism sector by initiating the marketing strategies of Kerala’s tourism products, to showcase them to the world and to get in touch with travel partners from all over the world.

Interested parties may please complete the Buyers’ Pre-registration available in website https://www.keralatravelmart.org/BuyersRegister

This completed form will be approved by a Committee and depending on the submitted profile the registrant may be offered the status of a Registered Buyer.

A login ID and password will be provided then. All registered buyers can interact with our members through the digital platform, and each buyer can schedule their prefixed appointments with using their respective login details.

Meanwhile, please feel free to contact the KTM Secretariat at ktm@keralatravelmart.org for any clarifications if needed.

CRICKETING CELEBRITIES INTERACT WITH INDIAN TRAVEL TRADE

cricketOn the back of a successful Border-Gavaskar test series, Tourism Australia’s Team India presented an exclusive opportunity to its travel partners to interact with Australian cricketing great, Brett Lee and noted cricket commentator and Friend of Australia, Harsha Bhogle.

The first tete-a-tete was organised on 12 January for Tourism Australia’s top 60 partners comprising of Premier Aussie Specialists, Traveller Made Agents and Key Distribution Partners.

The second talk show on 20 January witnessed Brett in conversation with Harsha, discussing about their favourite tourism experiences in Australia, a bit of cricket and stories of resilience and recovery.

Over 160 travel partners including Aussie Specialist Agents attended the virtual event aimed at reinforcing tourism ties between Australia and India to help maintain Australia’s appeal and consideration amongst the Indian travel community.

PORT STEPHENS STILL A FAVOURITE PATCH FOR INDIAN LOCALS AND VISITORS

port-stephensLess than three hours’ drive north of Sydney, Port Stephens – a shire embracing many seafront neighborhoods like Nelson Bay, Shoal Bay, Anna Bay, Soldiers Bay and others generally ranks high as a day-tripper in the itinerary of Indian locals and visitors alike to Australia particularly to see the dolphins while cruising the surrounding waters and if time permits to have a bash at the sand dunes said to be the largest of its kind in Southern Hemisphere.

However many other things to do and see there demand more than a day trip

Some of the other key attractions include  swimming at the beach in Shoal Bay,  getting close to koala’s at the Koala Sanctuary and playing with stingrays and sharks at the Irukandji Shark & Ray Encounters to hiking to the Tomaree Head Summit for a view stamped as one of the top ten scenic vista in Australia.

Not to be ignored is the food and wine scene for a taste of the best of the freshest local produces. There are plenty of top quality restaurants and cafes to serve them. This includes a few Indian cuisine outlets as well.  And finally the staying options are wide and varied from luxury hotels,motels and apartments to modest Airbnb rooms.

Because of the above Port Stephens has enjoyed a great summer with domestic tourism – all accommodation and eating outlets showing pretty good results with a reasonably high occupancy rates and bookings.

NSW aims to be premier visitor economy of the Asia-Pacific by 2030

nsw-bushOften referred as the ‘Premier State’ of Australia , the east coast state has established a new roadmap that outlines the State Government’s bold plan to make NSW the premier visitor economy of the Asia-Pacific by 2030.

Minister for Jobs, Investment, Tourism and Western Sydney Stuart Ayres launched the Visitor Economy Strategy 2030 recently to aid recovery and turbocharge visitor economy growth through securing world-class events, boosting regional visitation and building new tourism icons and visitor experiences for the future.

“If COVID-19 has shown us anything it’s that the visitor economy is everyone’s business – it accounts for almost 300,000 jobs and 110,000 businesses, and is integral to our state’s economy,” Minister Ayres said.

“Once health advice allows, NSW will bounce back as a result of a $200 million a year investment to help get the tourism sector back on its feet; we have shown how agility and resilience will keep our State open for business throughout this challenging pandemic.

“NSW is the largest visitor economy in Australia and this strategy is a roadmap to rebuild our $43 billion visitor economy and grow it to $65 billion by 2030 to become the premier visitor economy of the Asia-Pacific.

“From regions to roads, planning to precincts, the strategy provides a framework to guide investment and decision-making in the areas of marketing, events, business support, regulations, training and tourism infrastructure.”

The strategy – prepared by the Government’s tourism and major events agency Destination NSW through extensive stakeholder consultation with industry and government stakeholders – features these 2030 targets:

  • To reach $65 billion in total visitor expenditure, up on the previous overnight visitor expenditure target of $55 billion by 2030 which was set in 2018
  • A new focus on the day trip market, worth an estimated $10 billion by 2030
  • Growing opportunities in regional NSW as a key to the future, to contribute $25 billion total
  • The domestic market will be the primary focus until international travel resumes

“The Visitor Economy Strategy is not just about recovery, it’s about the future,” Minister Ayres said.

“The NSW Government is already charging ahead to create new tourism experiences and icons such as the new Sydney Fish Market, new sporting stadiums and cultural institutions and world-class walking tracks in regional NSW.

“We will bolster our reputation for staging premier events including the Australian exclusive production of Hamilton, Vivid Sydney, Disney’s Frozen and we are close to securing the full suite of 10 World Cup sporting events for NSW in 10 years.”

A Senior Officers Group will be established to coordinate funding and government services relating to the visitor economy while Destination NSW will lead a coordinated, whole of government approach to implementing the strategy.

The Visitor Economy Strategy 2030 is now available at: www.destinationnsw.com.au/VES2030

 

New Australian Tourism Minister

DanTenhamDan Tehan has been recently appointed as the new Minister for Trade, Tourism and Investment. He acknowledges the distress of businesses within the travel and tourism sector and is committed to spearhead its recovery.

After assuming office he has been continuously dealing with Australian Federation of Travel Agents (AFTA) in order to understand in detail the travel sector’s operations and challenges before moving on to discuss the future subsidies and grants.

The Federal Government $128 million Travel Support Program has already paid over $61 million to 1,591 travel businesses. A further 1,010 claims are being processed and industry is encouraged to keep applying until applications close 13 March 2021.