Shivani DDPPL

Gulf Air partners with ‘Shop Bahrain’ to boost tourism initiatives

Gulf Air has announced partnership with the fifth edition of ‘Shop Bahrain’. The partnership comes in line with Gulf Air’s efforts to support the Kingdom’s initiatives that contribute to boost the tourism sector. ‘Shop Bahrain’ is a 30-day event aimed at celebrating the Kingdom’s hospitality and tourism offering, reinforcing Bahrain’s position as a tourist destination – in particularly visitors coming from neighbouring GCC countries – due to its close proximity. The festival being held from January 1 to February 2, 2019 will offer a unique shopping experience with fun-filled family entertainment and valuable prizes. Commenting on this strategic partnership, Sheikh Khalid bin Humood Al Khalifa, CEO, Bahrain Tourism and Exhibitions Authority, said, “We thank Gulf Air for their ongoing support and efforts to promote the fifth edition of ‘Shop Bahrain’ through its different marketing channels. This will increase the Kingdom’s exposure on a regional and global level and encourage travellers to join the festival in the Kingdom. We are honoured by this partnership that supports BTEA’s strategy “Bahrain. Ours. Yours.” and strengthens relations between the public and private sectors to achieve the Economic Vision 2030.” Captain Waleed Al Alawi, Deputy Chief Executive Officer, Gulf Air, said, “We are delighted to be amongst the festival’s partners from the very first edition. This partnership comes in line with our efforts to support events and initiatives that revitalise the Kingdom’s economy, such as Formula 1, the Bahrain International Airshow, Ironman and more.” Through its strategic partnership Gulf Air is offering 5000 discounted airline tickets for Business and Economy Class Return tickets, among the 73,000 instant prizes given to the Festival’s winners.

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Over 1000 tour operators at MATKA 2019

Nordic Travel Fair (MATKA) held from January 16 to 20, 2019 in Messukeskus, Helsinki in Finland this year marked 30 years as the biggest travel industry events in Northern Europe with 940 exhibitors, 86 destinations under the theme ‘hidden treasures.’ The first two days were only for travel industry professionals with workshops and presentations and the last three were dedicated to consumers looking for travel deals and inspiration. MATKA targets travel industry professionals from all around the world. Buyers and suppliers, especially from Finland and Nordic countries find the event valuable. They focused on workshops and networking to boost sales, and on presentations relevant to industry professionals. Sustainable travel and modern sales are highlighted in MATKA 2019. As Nordic destinations is growing among Middle Eastern travellers, MATKA provided a good platform to take a look at these destinations and the travel experiences that are offered for visitors. 2019 had a strong focus on responsible and sustainable travel as well as food tourism with over 70,000 visitors. A number of exhibitors from Middle East has grown in the recent years and in 2019 destinations such as Sharjah and Ras Al Khaimah from the United Arab Emirates.

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DTCM inks deal with Al Ansari for tourism services

Dubai’s Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing (Dubai Tourism) and Al Ansari Exchange, a UAE-based foreign exchange and worldwide money transfer firm, have signed an agreement to facilitate payments for a range of tourism and travel-related services. Under the agreement, partners of Dubai Tourism including hotels, event organisers, tour operators and tourism companies will be able to make payments for services through 183 branches of Al Ansari Exchange across the UAE. The agreement was signed by Ahmed Khalifa Alfalasi, CEO, Corporate Services and Investments, Dubai Tourism and Rashed Ali Al Ansari, General Manager, Al Ansari Exchange. Commenting on the agreement, Alfalasi said, “Dubai Tourism is pleased to enter into a strategic partnership with Al Ansari Exchange, a renowned and respected name in the UAE’s money transfer sector, which will take our payment system to the next level of reliability and convenience. This is also a reflection of the strong spirit of collaboration that exists between the government and private sectors in Dubai for the provision of world-class services to both our residents and visitors, guided by the directives of the visionary leadership. As we continuously invest in upgrading our systems and processes to ensure a seamless and satisfying experience for all our customers, this agreement means that our partners no longer need to visit Dubai Tourism offices to make payments. The new method will supplement our online payment channels that were established as part of our contribution to the Smart Government initiative.” Al Ansari said, “We are pleased to collaborate with Dubai Tourism to enable their customers to pay the travel and tourism services fees through our wide branch network across the UAE and take advantage of its convenient and …

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Sri Lanka to participate in Arab Health, will promote itself as wellness tourism destination

Well-known for its wellness treatment, especially in the European and Asian markets, six of Sri Lanka’s health and wellness resorts will participate at the upcoming Arab Health exhibition and conference at the World Trade Center from January 28 to 31, 2019. Some of the alternative medicine and wellness tourism companies that will attend this event are Heritance Ayurveda Maha Gedara, Hettigoda Industries (Siddhalepa Ayurveda Resort), Barberyn Reef Ayurveda Resort, Vingnana at Reefs (Kaya Resort and Spa), Sen Wellness Sanctuary and Hotel Tree of Life. The objective of participation at this year’s Arab Health is to establish business links with prospective business partners in promoting Sri Lanka as a prominent wellness tourism destination in the region.

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275 room Waldorf Astoria DIFC to open in Spring 2019

Waldorf Astoria Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC), a 275-room property nestled in the heart of Sharjah’s financial district will be opening in Spring 2019. The first Waldorf Astoria city hotel to open in the UAE comprises 201 guest rooms, 46 suites and 28 residential apartments, and offers breathtaking scenes across Dubai’s skyline, facilitated by floor-to-ceiling windows in every room. Besides, elevated culinary experiences can be found within Waldorf Astoria DIFC, where three distinct dining options and bars are available. Bull and Bear restaurant is the hotel’s signature restaurant, while the rooftop lounge, St Trop and the brand’s iconic Peacock Alley Lounge and Bar will serve as meeting points for different occasions. Boasting a retreat through its state-of-the-art spa and fitness centre facilities, the hotel offers re-imagined meeting spaces, connected at lobby level for guest convenience. Featuring a dedicated Business Centre, Ballroom and Library among 3 other flexible meeting spaces, Waldorf Astoria DIFC provides an all-encompassing experience for the discerning business or leisure traveller. Waldorf Astoria DIFC combines an iconic environment and a bespoke anticipatory ‘True Waldorf Service’, supporting the guests’ desire to live in the moment and ‘Live Unforgettable’. Waldorf Astoria DIFC is located at Burj Daman on Happiness Street, just a stone’s throw from Dubai’s most iconic attractions, The Dubai Mall and Burj Khalifa, and 12 minutes from Dubai International Airport.

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Etihad flies world’s maiden flight using bioenergy

The Sustainable Bioenergy Research Consortium (SBRC), a non-profit entity established by Masdar Institute that is part of Khalifa University of Science and Technology, has flown the world’s first commercial flight using locally produced sustainable fuel on an Etihad Airways Boeing 787 powered by GE’s GEnx-1B engines.  The flight from Abu Dhabi to Amsterdam marked a major milestone in the development of a clean, alternative aviation fuel to reduce carbon emissions. The initiative also addresses food security in the UAE through the farming of seafood as a core element in the process. The SBRC partners have been working together to prove the concept of a comprehensive value chain that is centered around the Seawater Energy and Agriculture System (SEAS). This is a synergistic industrial platform that supports the aviation sector, the oil and gas industry, food production and the creation of a new agricultural alternative in the UAE. His Excellency Dr Thani bin Ahmed Al Zeyoudi, Minister, Climate Change and Environment, said, “The UAE’s visionary leadership is strongly committed to positioning the country as a global hub for innovation and sustainability. In this context, productive cross-disciplinary public-private partnerships are crucial to fuelling research and development efforts and creating game-changing innovations that enable a more sustainable future. Deep decarbonisation of energy-intensive industries has a ripple effect on food security and climate action. Clean, alternative aviation fuels are an innovative and sustainable solution to significantly reducing harmful carbon emissions. The UAE is proud to be a pioneer in this domain.” Her Excellency Mariam bint Mohammed Saeed Hareb Al Mheiri, Minister of State for Food Security, said, “This proof of concept is a ground-breaking development that addresses the challenges of energy, water and food …

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SCTDA participates in Matka Nordic Travel Fair 2019, targets key global markets

In line with its strategy to reach out to and explore new global markets, the Sharjah Commerce and Tourism Development Authority (SCTDA) participated for the first time in Matka Nordic Travel Fair, being held at Messukeskus Helsinki in Finland from January 17 to 20, 2019. The participation in Matka 2019 formed part of SCTDA’s endeavours to target key global markets through participating in international events and exhibitions to strengthen Sharjah’s position as a leading global tourist destination. Besides creating awareness about its unique tourism and hospitality offerings before visitors from the Nordics, the participation in Northern Europe’s largest travel industry event also marks SCTDA’s entry into the Nordic markets. The emirate of Sharjah welcomed 92,000 travellers from Northern Europe in the year 2018. To further drive and sustain this growth, SCTDA’s partners such as Radisson Blue Hotel, Sharjah International Airport Authority, Coral Beach Hotel, Sharjah Airport Travel Agency (SATA), the Act Hotel, Sharjah Collection, Beach Hotel and TravTalk will exhibit under its banner at the exhibition to raise awareness about the emirate’s local culture, history and unique tourism offerings. The concerted efforts will support the achievement of Sharjah Tourism Vision 2021. To attract an increased number of international visitors to the emirate, including Northern Europeans, SCTDA focuses on the Sharjah Tourism Vision 2021 that aims to attract more than 10 million tourists by the year 2021, coinciding with the UAE’s 50th year of founding. To achieve this, SCTDA, in collaboration with partners in the tourism sector, has adopted four strategic pillars. These are: the promotion of Sharjah as an ideal family tourism destination by offering distinct packages and offers, adoption of an innovative tourism approach to enhance the tourist experience, …

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‘Mother of the Nation Festival’ to be held in Abu Dhabi from March 12-23

The Department of Culture and Tourism – Abu Dhabi (DCT Abu Dhabi) has announced that the fourth edition of ‘Mother of the Nation Festival’ (MOTN) is set to return to Abu Dhabi from March 12-23, 2019, in conjunction with the Special Olympics World Games, taking place from March 14-21. More than 7,500 athletes from 192 countries are set to participate in the Games, which are being held in the Middle East and North Africa region for the first time. The festival pays tribute to the living legacy of the original ‘Mother of the Nation’, HH Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak, Supreme Chairwoman of the Family Development Foundation, Chairwoman of the General Women’s Union and President of the Supreme Council of Motherhood and Childhood. It embodies her inspirational values of empowerment, conservation, collaboration and sustainability. MOTN is committed to providing a wide array of entertainment through performances, workshops, dining, retail offers and activities for the entire family to enjoy over the course of 12 days. The festival’s campaign will embody the spirit of the ‘Year of Tolerance’ through a number of activities, which will once again be held along a kilometre of Abu Dhabi’s Corniche. It will offer something for everyone to enjoy, from musical and entertainment performances and art exhibits to interactive workshops, in addition to the newly introduced Special Olympics Zone. There will also be an e-sports gaming championship in the Progress Zone, while the Happiness Zone returns with an array of exhilarating activities. HE Saif Saeed Ghobash, Undersecretary, DCT Abu Dhabi, said, “This year, we are delighted to host the Special Olympics World Summer Games as part of the fourth edition of the Mother of the Nation Festival. This …

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Emirates, flydubai to add new codeshare destinations

The strategic partnership between Emirates and flydubai continues to open up the world for travellers since its launch 14 months ago, and is set to grow even further in 2019 with new codeshare destinations to be added. The partnership, which came into effect at the end of October 2017, has since delivered a number of benefits to both airlines’ customers, such as offering greater global connectivity through more destination choices, flexibility with flight options when planning trips, one integrated loyalty programme and the convenience of travelling on a single ticket with seamless point to point baggage handling. Through the codeshare partnership, Emirates’ customers can access 67 additional destinations through flydubai’s network, while flydubai’s customers have 115 additional destinations they can travel to on Emirates’ network. “The partnership between Emirates and flydubai has not only delivered tangible benefits to our collective customers but also to both airlines in terms of the synergies that come with working closely together. For example, reducing route overlaps and the realignment of schedules to common destinations. In addition, the partnership has also helped to further strengthen Dubai’s position as a leading global aviation hub with the increase in traffic flows resulting from the two airlines’ codeshare network, and by enabling smooth and seamless connections for customers through the city’s modern and comfortable international airport,” said His Highness Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, Chairman and Chief Executive, Emirates Group and Chairman, flydubai. During 2019, the network of codeshare flights will be further expanded, with the launch of new flydubai destinations like Naples and Budapest, as well as several others that will be announced in due course. flydubai flights to Chittagong will also restart from January 20, while …

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Sharjah showcases tourism and hospitality offerings at SATTE 2019

As part of its strategy to explore key global markets to effectively position Sharjah on the global tourism map, Sharjah Commerce and Tourism Development Authority (SCTDA) is participating at SATTE 2019, South Asia’s leading travel trade show, being held from January 16-18 at India Expo Centre, Greater Noida – Delhi NCR. SCTDA will utilise the event platform to enhance the emirate’s brand and profile before Indian and other international visitors to drive growth, particularly in terms of the number of international tourist arrivals in 2019 and beyond. At SATTE 2019, the Authority will showcase Sharjah’s unique tourism and hospitality offerings along with a number of partners from both public and private sectors. These include Ramada Hotel- Sharjah, Copthorne Hotel- Sharjah, Air Arabia, Sharjah Airport Travel Agency (SATA), Orient Tours and TravTalk. Under SCTDA’s banner, these entities will highlight Sharjah’s local culture, history and the diverse leisure and recreational activities its tourism sector has to offer. HE Khalid Jasim Al Midfa, Chairman, SCTDA, said, “Since SATTE has become the launch platform for many countries and tourism products from across the globe to do business in and with India, we consider this as an extremely strategic opportunity to widen our reach and explore new partnerships. Our participation in SATTE 2019 complements our vision of positioning Sharjah as the ideal global destination for family holidaymakers, while also emphasising the emirate’s status as a well-known cultural hub for historical and natural heritage. Drawing inspiration from the Sharjah Tourism Vision 2021, which aims to attract 10 million tourists, we will continue to develop distinctive family leisure and tourism activities with special packages to attract visitors. Hence, expanding our presence to new markets through partnerships with …

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