Shivani DDPPL

G Travel signs new technology agreement with Travelport

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Travelport has announced a new multi-year technology and content agreement with Norwegian travel agency chain, G Travel. With 27 agencies in Norway, six agencies in Sweden and an additional 17 global agencies, G Travel is one of the most expansive travel companies in the Nordics. Aided by a tailor-made solution by Travelport, G Travel consultants will gain access to intelligent, fast and accurate search of high-quality content from over 400 airlines, 650,000 hotel properties, and 35,000 car rental locations. With over 250 airlines signed up to use Travelport’s unique merchandising technology, the company will also benefit from being able to display, gain insights from and sell branded fare families and ancillary products (such as paid seat assignments, baggage fees, priority boarding, etc.) from these airlines. In addition, as part of the agreement, G Travel will use Travelport Business Insights, a cutting-edge data analytics tool that provides near real-time access to actionable insights from a vast range of data sources to help it optimize supplier contracts, enhance customer service and improve operational efficiencies. As the only global distribution system (GDS) provider to be certified by IATA as a “Level 3” Aggregator under its New Distribution Capability (NDC) initiative, Travelport will soon benefit the company further by creating NDC connections with airlines as they become available.

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Turkish Tourism launches ‘The Year of Troia’ at ATM

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The Turkish Cultural and Tourism Office in Dubai recently launched “The Year of Troia (Troy)” campaign at the Arabian Travel Market (ATM) as part of the Tourism Plan of Turkey – 2023 to expand tourism traffic into the country with a focus on particular areas, such as the country’s north western region surrounding Canakkale province. “The importance of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries in contributing to Turkey’s growing tourism industry is reflected by the fact that we have over fifty partners from Turkey participating in our pavilion at ATM this year,” said Salih Ozer, Attache of Culture and Information, Turkey to the UAE. In early January, the Turkish government declared 2018 the “Year of Troy” in honour of the 20th anniversary of the ancient city’s recognition as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It is the historic setting of the Trojan War, described in detail in Homer’s epic poems as “The Iliad” and “The Odyssey.” To mark the occasion, a variety of events are planned throughout the year. The new Troia Museum in western Canakkale Province is expected to draw one million tourists in its inaugural year. The 10,000 square meter museum will showcase archeological findings of the ancient city, including 24 gold pieces known as the treasures of Helen of Troy, which were returned to Turkey from the U.S. after 125 years. Hollywood actors starring in “Troy,” the 2004 blockbuster such as Brad Pitt, Diane Kruger, Eric Bana and Orlando Bloom, have been invited to visit the museum by Turkey’s Tourism and Culture Ministry.

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Wego inks deal with SCTDA to promote tourism in Sharjah

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A new campaign deal has been inked between Wego and Sharjah Commerce and Tourism Development Authority (SCTDA) for an innovative destination co-marketing campaign to boost tourism in the Emirate of Sharjah. The campaign will promote authentic tourist experiences and hidden gems exclusive to the emirate, enabling tourists to surpass traditional generic pursuits. By showcasing some of Sharjah’s biggest tourist attractions, through innovative online marketing activities, the campaign seeks to position the Emirate as a destination of choice amongst global travellers. Sharjah’s delightful mix of fun attractions, traditional hospitality and old-world charm, which resonate with a variety of audiences from around the world, will be promoted through this campaign. The campaign will focus on promoting the Emirate’s much-loved events and activities such as, but not limited to, the Sharjah International Book Fair, Sharjah Calligraphy Biennial and Sharjah Traditional Crafts Forum. “Sharjah is the perfect Middle Eastern city for travellers who wish to explore a ‘fresh’ destination packed with unique history and rich heritage and traditions,” said Mamoun Hmedan, Wego Managing Director for MENA and India. “In order to boost the emirate’s image as a family-friendly and culturally-charged destination, Wego will harness online tools such as high-impact display advertising, Search Engine Marketing (SEM), and unique content marketing tactics. Together, these digital marketing tactics seek to further strengthen SCTDA’s ongoing marketing efforts,” he added.

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Travelport announces ‘Trip Assist’ for travel agencies

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Travelport has announced a trio of new agreements with travel agencies in the UK, the Middle East, and Singapore to deploy Trip Assist, Travelport’s mobile app for agencies. The new agreements come after the successful launch of Trip Assist in the Middle East in April 2018 and will give the customers of UK-based Omega Travel Limited, the United Arab Emirates-based Cozmo Travel, and Singapore-based Pegasus Travel a personalized service at their fingertips wherever they are on their journey. Trip Assist provides agencies with a fully branded mobile engagement solution that enables them to support, engage and connect with their travellers at every stage of their journey. Incorporating smart itinerary management capabilities and the ability to create agency defined messages; Trip Assist empowers agencies to build stronger relationships with travellers. For travellers, Trip Assist is a personal digital travel concierge service that provides day of travel assistance, real-time trip alerts and click to call agent support. Niklas Andreen, Senior Vice President and Managing Director, Global Hospitality and Digital at Travelport said, “Mobile done right, allows agents to move from passive itinerary management to being a true proactive partner of the travellers throughout their journey. Travelport is proud to be working with such pioneering travel agencies as Omega Travel, Cozmo Travel and Pegasus Travel Management on redefining the role of the travel agency through mobile engagement.”

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Hyperloop to transit passengers between DWC & Dubai International in six minutes

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Innovative Hyperloop connections could reduce travel times between Dubai International Airport (DXB) and Al Maktoum International Airport (DWC) by around 34 minutes in future, according to experts who spoke during a panel discusion on Arabian Travel Market’s Global Stage. Providing a lightening-speed Hyperloop transit system would allow airport passengers to travel between both airports in as little as six to seven minutes – a shorter transit time than travelling between terminals at Dubai International Airport. The future of Hyperloop and travel infrastructure in the UAE and wider GCC was discussed at Arabian Travel Market, at Dubai World Trade Centre, during a seminar session entitled ‘Future Travel Experiences’. Virgin Hyperloop One, a futuristic transportation concept through which pods, propelled by magnets and solar, will move passengers and cargo at speeds of 1,200kph, is the most prominent tourism infrastructure development in the UAE at present. Backed by Dubai-based DP World, Hyperloop One has the potential to transport approximately 3,400 people an hour, 128,000 people a day and 24 million people a year. In November 2016, Dubai’s Road and Transport Authority (RTA) announced plans to evaluate a hyperloop connection between Dubai and Abu Dhabi, which could reduce travel times between the two emirates by 78 minutes.

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Abu Dhabi receives over 1.2 milion guests in first three months of 2018

Abu Dhabi Records Double Digit Growth

The number of  guests staying in Abu Dhabi’s 163 hotels and hotel apartments in March reached to 464,960, representing an increase of 12.3% compared to the same month last year, according to a report by the Department of Culture and Tourism – Abu Dhabi . This means that the total number of hotel guests in the first three months of the year was 1,289,537, a year-on-year increase of 10.9% with key international markets registering impressive percentage gains. During the month, the numbers of visitors from leading international source market China increased by 15.4% to number 40,800, Indian guests increased by 32% to number 35,200 and the UK increased by 24% to reach 28,000. Other key markets, notably the United States and Germany, also registered double-digit increases with the US up 29% to 19,300 and Germany rising 36% to 18,800 guests. The figures follow a record-breaking 2017 when just shy of five million visitors stayed in Abu Dhabi city, Al Al Ain Region and Al Dhafra’s range of accommodation. UAE-based guests also increased in March to number 134,631, a rise from March 2017’s total of 130,125. The first quarter of this year has seen China maintain its position as leading international hotel guest supplier, with more than 127,000 Chinese staying in the emirate. Indian visitors have surged past 100,000 and showed a 30% increase. HE Saif Saeed Ghobash, Undersecretary, DCT Abu Dhabi, said, “Our progress in attracting more people to explore the emirate as a visitor destination.Our targeted marketing investment in key source markets is being rewarded with impressive double-digit growth as our global awareness grows and we develop into a ‘must visit’ destination built on unique experiences and rich cultural heritage”.

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Dubai Parks & Resorts, Dubai Airports sign agreement for unparalled airport experience

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Dubai Parks and Resorts and Dubai Airports have announced a strategic partnership with the aim of creating an unparalleled airport experience while showcasing Dubai’s position as the ultimate tourist and family entertainment destination in the region. The partnership will showcase Dubai Airports’ efforts to make Dubai International (DXB) a destination in its own while promoting the breadth of offer at Dubai Parks and Resorts to the over 88 million passengers travelling through Dubai Airport annually. The agreement will see Dubai Parks and Resorts promoted at all DXB concourses with access to over 65 airlines flying to and from over 240 destinations in 170 countries around the globe. Dubai Parks and Resorts will engage and delight airport passengers by providing branded family zones and dedicated retail locations selling Dubai Parks and Resorts products while enticing them to experience the full offer by conducting direct marketing and immersive advertising. Dubai International (DXB), the world’s busiest international airport, recorded a 10% average passenger growth over the past 10 years with 88.2 million passengers passing through it in 2017, and some 90 million passengers are expected in 2018. 2018 is the first full year of operations for Dubai Parks and Resorts and the Company aims to continue growing international tourist visitor numbers to the destination in line with the Dubai Tourism Vision 2020. The first quarter of 2018, set a new record for Dubai Parks and Resorts, with over 850,000 visits to the destination, a 45% increase compared to the same period last year.  

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AA Al Moosa Enterprises welcomes UAE’s key dignitaries at ATM

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The AA Al Moosa pavilion welcomed the visit of His Highness Sheikh Humaid Bin Ammar Al Nuaimi of Ajman who was received by Abdullah Ahmed Al Moosa, founder and owner of AA Al Moosa Enterprises, and expressed his fascination by the portfolio and history of the company, and the iconis three upcoming hotels in the Palm. The pavilion drew a large number of visitors and served as a key platform for networking and meetings between government officials, key chain hotels executives, major tour operators, partners and representatives of leading travel and tourism companies. The highlight of the group’s participation was the unveiling of three iconic hotel projects that will be opening on the Palm namely Hilton The Palm, TAJ Exotica Resort & Spa and Marriott The Palm. The hotels with a target opening of 2019 will bring an additional 1,500 rooms and suites to the current inventory of hotel rooms in Dubai and will increase the company’s portfolio to a total of 4730 rooms. In addition to Hilton The Palm, TAJ Exotica Resort & Spa and Marriott The Palm, other hotel properties that the Group currently owned were represented at the show such as Hilton Jumeirah Beach, Hilton Salalah, Hilton Creek, Four Points by Sheraton Sheikh Zayed Road, Four Points by Sheraton Downtown Dubai, Ramada Plaza JBR, Ramada Hotel & Suites Sharjah and Crowne Plaza Muscat.

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Emirates introduces Home Check-in in Dubai

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Emirates has introduced Home Check-in, a new service which will allow its customers to check in for their flights from anywhere in Dubai. The service is available for customers across all classes travelling on Emirates flights. The new service enables Emirates passengers to complete the security check and check-in from the comfort of their home, hotel or office and have their luggage transported to the airport prior to their flight. An Emirates check-in agent will arrive at the preferred location to weigh and tag the bags as well as check-in the customers and issue boarding passes. Customers can then make their own way to the airport and head directly to immigration, bypassing the check-in desks at the airport. The service is available for AED 350 per trip for up to 7 pieces of luggage. AED 35 will be charged for each additional piece of luggage. Customers can book the service on emirates.com up to 12 hours before flight departure time. Emirates has been running trials for its Home Check-in service since October to ensure that the customer experience and security checks are faultless. The service seals each bag and stores them in a separate hold in the van. Emirates Home Check-in will be operated with a new fleet of vans. The new Home Check-in offering complements other luggage handling services already available for Emirates flights in Dubai.

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Muscat International Airport gets a new facelift

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The first phase of Oman’s brand new Muscat International Airport is operational now and has increased the passenger capacity to 20 million, up from the previous 12 million passengers recorded in 2017. The state-of-the-art airport has been designed to be the shining symbol of the Sultanate of Oman. The new airport is designed as International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) category 4F airports which will be able to accommodate the world`s largest aircraft, Airbus A380 and the runway will enable independent parallel operations. The passenger terminals built with the latest technology are aligned with IATA Service Level A standards. The total gross area for the new Muscat International terminal building is 580,000 m2 with an overall airport land area of 21 km2. Salim Al-Mamari, Ministry of Tourism, Oman said, “The government of Oman is focusing on Travel and Tourism as a part of its economic diversification strategy. The newly opened Muscat International Airport, brand new Oman Convention and Exhibition Centre, revised visa rules along with other infrastructure developments seen in the recent times determine some of the efforts to increase tourism in Oman. India is one of the key markets for Oman and we are certain that this proactive initiative by the Ministry will drive a lot of visitors from India. Since 2014, Oman has witnessed over 23% growth in Indian arrivals. In 2016, Oman received 297,628 Indian arrivals as compared to 256,210 arrivals in 2014 that is over 16% growth within 2 years. In 2017, Oman received 321,161 Indian arrivals which is remarkably higher, showcasing growth of over 7.90 % in just one year.”

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