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 COVER STORY

Indian travellers get into gear for Self Drive Holidays
In line with the fast maturing and evolving Indian outbound travellers seeking experiential holidays, the trend of Self Drive holidays amongst India travellers is gaining popularity rapidly. TravelBiz Monitor in order to cater to this growing niche segment launched a book, ‘Dream Drives: India Outbound-Self Drive Experiences 2015’, in association with Hertz Rent-a-Car at ITB Berlin recently.
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 IN CONVERSATION
‘We are committed to developing India as a key emerging source market’
Seychelles is all about once-in-a-lifetime experiences, according to Sherin Naiken, CEO, Seychelles Tourism Board. In a brief chat with Achal Dhruva on the sidelines of the Carnaval International de Victoria held last month, she outlined the USP’s of the island destination, the importance and potential of the Indian market, and the target segments and strategies to tap Indian travellers
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 GUEST COLUMN
Anil Bhandari Tourism Boom – e-tourist visa for Chinese
The three-day tour of Narendra Modi to China has brought good news for the tourism industry as the Prime Minister unveiled an electronic tourist visa (e-tourist visa) plan for Chinese nationals, which will enable tourists from the neighbouring country to apply for an Indian visa online. This will attract a larger numbers of tourists from China.
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A DAY IN A LIFE OF
Radha Bhatia, Chairperson, Bird Group
From a teacher to a successful entrepreneur-cum-philanthropist, Radha Bhatia is truly a role model for many. Even so, being the humble person that she is, she believes that the goodwill that Bird Group, which she heads, commands in the trade, and its activities on the social work front are the results of joint endeavours. The visionary tells Akansha Pandey about her journey and her love for social welfare
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This Week's Top Headlines
India to extend electronic tourist visa to Chinese nationals: PM
  India and China today inked 24 agreements after talks between Prime Minister (PM) Narendra Modi and Premier Li Keqiang in Beijing. This includes an agreement on cooperation in the field of tourism. ...read more>>
35 NGOs take staunch objection to draft National Tourism Policy 2015
  Thirty-five civil society organisations have taken serious objection to the draft National Tourism Policy, 2015, citing that it has limited vision, a flawed approach, craves to centralise, places central bureaucracy ...read more>>
Hotel associations air conflicting views on draft National Tourism Policy 2015
  The hotel associations in the country are seemingly not on the same page as far as the new draft National Tourism Policy is concerned. While the apex body of hotel associations in the country...read more>>
Guldeep Singh Sahni re-elected as President of OTOAI
  The Outbound Tour Operators Association of India (OTOAI) recently conducted the election process for the term 2015-17. Twelve applications were received for the posts of the OTOAI Executive Committee (EC) Members....read more>>
Inbound numbers rise 1086% on-year in Jan-Apr 2015 due to e-Tourist Visa
  Last month, 19,139 tourists arrived in India on e-Tourist Visa, as compared with 2,167 under the earlier Tourist Visa on Arrival (TVoA) Scheme in April 2014, registering a growth of 783.2 per cent....read more>>
India scales 13 positions on WEF Travel & Tourism Competitiveness Index
  India has climbed to the 52nd position in the biennial Travel & Tourism Competitiveness Index (TTCI), released by the World Economic Forum (WEF). In the 2013 ranking, the country ranked 65th....read more>>
Madhya Pradesh CM appeals to businesses to invest in tourism sector
  Shivraj Singh Chouhan, Chief Minister (CM) of Madhya Pradesh has appealed to private investors to look at abundant investment opportunities available in the tourism sector in the state....read more>>
Sabre to acquire Abacus International; transaction to close in Q3 2015
  Sabre Corporation has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire Abacus International, a leading Global Distribution System (GDS) in the Asia-Pacific region. Abacus is currently owned ...read more>>
Pinnacle Air to start flights to Cooch Behar Airport from Kolkata via Durgapur & Bagdogra in June
  The Cooch Behar Airport in West Bengal witnessed preview flights operated by Pinnacle Air, in technical collaboration with Bengal Aerotropolis Projects Limited (BAPL), on Sunday and yesterday. ...read more>>
The South Beach Singapore eyes Indian luxury outbound market
  Singapore-based luxury hotel, The South Beach is looking at tapping the Indian luxury outbound traveller segment. The 654-room (including 49 suites and two sky gardens) luxury ...read more>>
Trinidad and Tobago appoints Kieron Pollard & Dwayne Bravo as brand ambassadors
  On the backdrop of ongoing Indian Premier League (IPL), the twin-island nation of Trinidad and Tobago, represented by Beautiful Planet in India, has appointed cricketers Kieron Pollard and Dwayne Bravo ...read more>>
Park Hotel Group appoints Discover the World as GSA in USA and India
  Park Hotel Group has appointed Discover the World, a global travel services and distribution company, as its Global Sales Agent (GSA) in the USA and India, which are among the Group’s top ten source markets...read more>>
IIFA appoints Island Group as Channel Partner for 2015 Awards
  International Indian Film Academy (IIFA) has appointed Mumbai-based B2B travel management company, Island Group as Channel Partner for IIFA Weekend and Awards 2015 in India, which will be held from...read more>>
Stayzilla.com plans to add over 50,000 stay options by end of next year
  A fast growing player in India’s travel ecosystem, Stayzilla.com, which provides hotel booking service from ultra-low budget rooms to luxury stay currently, has set for exponential growth in terms of hotels and destinations....read more>>
Ginger Hotels unveils its first ‘Smart Basics’ hotel in Thane
  Roots Corporation, a subsidiary of the Indian Hotels Company Limited (IHCL), announced the launch of its first hotel in the City of Lakes – Thane, Maharashtra. The Smart Basics hotel offers ...read more>>
PATA Annual Summit 2016 to be held in Tumon, Guam
  The Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA) will organise its Annual Summit 2016 at the Dusit Thani Guam Resort in Tumon, Guam - an island territory in USA - in May. The Summit, hosted by the Guam Visitors Bureau...read more>>
Genting Hong Kong acquires Crystal Cruises for USD 550mn
  Genting Hong Kong (GHK) has completed the acquisition of Crystal Cruises (Crystal) from Nippon Yusen Kabushiki Kaisha (NYK), for a total transaction of USD 550 million, stated a release. ...read more>>