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The Big Picture

Lufthansa appoints George Ettiyil as Senior Director Sales, South Asia

Lufthansa Group Airlines has appointed George Ettiyil as its new Senior Director Sales South Asia. Effective February 2019, he will be responsible for all commercial activities of the Lufthansa Group Airlines, including Lufthansa German Airlines, SWISS, Austrian Airlines and Brussels Airlines, in India, Nepal, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka. George Ettiyil has held several key positions within the Lufthansa Group for more than 20 years. For the last few years he served as Head of Global …

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From Air India to MoCA: Kharola keeps his tryst with aviation

Pradeep Singh Kharola, CMD, Air India has been appointed as the Civil Aviation secretary in what has been dubbed as a minor top-level bureaucratic reshuffle. He takes charge in place of Rajiv Nayan Choubey, who superannuated on January 31 and took charge as a member of UPSC. He assumes the position at a challenging time when the aviation infrastructure is under considerable stress, hard-pressed by a rapid growth in the passenger count. The domestic aviation …

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Rural tourism answer to India’s quest for growth, employment in the hinterland, suggest segment biggies

The inaugural edition of Rural Tourism Day brought together champions of the segment, who suggested implementing Gandhi’s ideals of village sufficiency in full earnest. They insisted on harnessing the innate potential of rural India in arts and crafts, cultural uniqueness, and authenticity to provide the populace with tangible gains on economic and social fronts. Rural tourism was a sure shot way of achieving these aspirations, the general sense indicated. Excerpts from the discussion chaired by …

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Localised content, rise in first-time flyers big takeaways from 2018, says Aloke Bajpai

With growth increasingly being driven by secondary and tertiary markets, localised content and regional languages are gaining prominence, says Aloke Bajpai, CEO and Co-Founder, ixigo. He believes that artificial intelligence, virtual reality, and speech recognition will simplify the way people travel and holiday. His take on big developments impacting travel and tourism in 2018. Rise in first time flyers 2018 has seen a substantial increase in first-time flyers. Leading airlines have deployed new local routes …

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Tourism gains more prominence in NITI Aayog’s vision for ‘New India@75’ 

NITI Aayog has come up with a comprehensive document, more a vision statement for India when it will celebrate its 75th year of independence in 2022. The document has been prepared after extensive consultation among government and other stakeholders. The apex policy think tank has recognised tourism as a major source of employment generation and national growth and has outlined key challenges that need to be systematically addressed. In its report titled ‘Strategy for New …

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Expect cruise tourism to go big in 2 years; niche market set to grow, notes Neelu Singh

Tourism is in for heady days, believes Neelu Singh, CEO, Ezeego1.com. The focus on infrastructure, success of RCS-UDAN in adding new destinations on the aviation map, and improving port infra are equally expected to contribute to a well-rounded growth in travel and tourism in 2019 and beyond. She writes on the big trends in the market right now. With a prediction of becoming the third largest aviation market by 2025, India is set to surpass …

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CII Report reaffirms the need for diversifying beyond the long-haul for inbound

CII has recently unveiled a report which suggests a slew of measures to mainstream tourism, further integrating it to the national growth. The report has underlined the need for a concerted plan around cultivating the Chinese market as the biggest potential source of international inbound for India. Titled ‘CII policy dashboard on tourism’, the report has batted for reinvesting at least 20 per cent of earning from tourism back into the sector to strengthen the …

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Tourism assumes a greater significance in India’s ‘Act East Policy’

That tourism would act as a crucial plank in India’s ‘Act East Policy’ is a thought that would find little traction beyond the boundaries of the Indian tourism industry. But it has come to assume a much greater role in strengthening bilateral ties between India and Myanmar. Indian tourists flying to Myanmar’s three international airports are now eligible for visa-on-arrival. Interestingly, the decision coincides with President Ram Nath Kovind’s five-day state visit to Myanmar. Foreign …

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Tier-2 cities gaining unprecedented traction, suggests KAYAK’s India Study report

Kayak’s recently released ‘KAYAK’s 2019 ‘Best Time To Book’ travel guide has given some interesting insights into the behaviour of the Indian traveller. The big finding suggests that tier-2 cities are gaining an unprecedented traction, with Varanasi topping the charts as the most searched destination. It also outlines that Bangkok and Dubai are the most favoured destinations among the Indian outbound. Here are some excerpts from the report:  Best time to book flights for most domestic destinations …

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Delhi, Mumbai among the top ten cities in job creation via tourism: WTTC Report

The recently released World Travel & Tourism Council: City Travel & Tourism Impact 2018 – October 2018 report has given interesting insights into global tourism trends. It comes as no surprise that Chinese cities will continue to dominate as destinations with the fastest growing travel and tourism GDP, for the near future. Much of the global growth is also being fuelled by the Asia-Pacific region. From an Indian perspective, Delhi has been ranked seventh, and …

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Change of guard at WTTCII; Rajeev Talwar is the new Chairman

There has been a change of guard at World Travel & Tourism Council, India Initiative (WTTCII). New office bearers have been appointed for the year 2019 at the recently held AGM meet in the capital. Rajeev Talwar, Chief Executive Officer, DLF has been appointed as the Chairman of WTTCII for the year 2019. He served as the Vice Chairman of WTTCII for the year 2018 and takes over from Sunder G. Advani, Chairman & Managing …

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Growth in cruise numbers a prelude to the rise of cruise tourism in India: Ratna Chadha

There have some positive developments in the cruise segment. A new association has been formed. The government has been sounding positive and the y-o-y growth in tourist numbers have been more on the expected lines. TIRUN has been a market leader, one of the first movers in the space and has essentially driven the segment, creating a visibility for the Indian audience. Ratna Chadha, Chief Executive, TIRUN believes that the steady growth in numbers could …

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Hold the visa fee hike until Incredible India 2.0 stabilises in key markets: Sunder Advani

The hike in visa fee was a dampener for tourists heading to the Indian shores and GoI needed to resist the temptation until the newly rolled out Incredible India 2.0 campaign stabilised in key source markets, suggested Sunder Advani, Chairman, WTTCII. He also advocated bringing aviation fuel within the ambit of GST, exhorting the government to view tourism as a driver of national growth and employment. Excerpts from the interview:  Stakeholders have suggested that India’s …

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FM Arun Jaitley releases Amitabh Kant’s book on transformative ideas

The book provides food for thought and action Amitabh Kant, CEO, NITI Aayog has edited a book on thoughts into the future. Transformative ideas for Indian economy and society. A book that took a year into publishing, contributions coming from some of the best minds and domain experts. A look at the sectors that will form the cornerstones of India’s growth. Identifying the challenges and their best solutions, to take the India story forward. As …

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Rope in MoEA, commerce ministry to boost global outreach: Sarab Jit Singh

In a meeting with key commerce ministry officials, Sarab Jit Singh, Managing Director, Travelite has suggested a slew of measures to enhance the growth prospect of tourism in the country, most notably roping in the Ministry of External Affairs and Commerce to better coordinate outreach activities. He recently took a delegation to share the perspective of private stakeholders. We spoke to him to understand the key areas of intervention mooted by him and its possible …

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FICCI YES BANK report backs private sector initiatives for infra

A FICCI YES BANK report titled ‘Tourism Infrastructure Investments: Leveraging Partnerships for Exponential Growth’ has suggested a slew of measures to improve the state of investment in the sector. Here are some excerpts from the report, outlining the way forward: Tourism Specific ‘Ease of Doing Business Rankings’: ‘EoDB Tourism State Rankings’ can be introduced with comprehensive parameters for assessment of State initiatives. A uniform format can be introduced for collection and publishing of tourism data …