Category Archives: Agents

Dubai College of Tourism welcomes first batch of ‘City of Gold’ students

The Dubai College of Tourism (DCT), an institution established by Dubai’s Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing (Dubai Tourism) welcomes the first batch of students as part of the ‘City of Gold’ scholarship, awarded to first-year applicants enrolled for the Certificate of Retail course. As part of the programme, 20 Emirati and expatriate students have received fully-funded academic grants to cover their tuition fees throughout the year. Successful completion of the course will open doors to exciting career opportunities within the Dubai Gold and Jewellery Group (DGJG), a partner for this project, for all candidates, allowing them to enter the tourist-facing workforce with practical experience and valuable industry knowledge. The ‘City of Gold’ scholarship is part of DCT’s ongoing industry collaborations and partnerships, providing students with hands-on training and access to industry expertise. Commenting on the success of the scholarships, Essa Bin Hadher, General Manager, Dubai College of Tourism, said, “The ‘City of Gold’ scholarship programme is the first in a series of scholarships that DCT is committed to introduce to help build and nurture young talent. We are delighted with the success of the programme and hope to continue with our endeavour to further train young, eager Emirati nationals and expatriates and help them succeed in Dubai’s rapidly evolving tourism industry.” The ‘City of Gold’ scholarship programme combines classroom learning with real-world experiences, offering students direct industry application in Dubai’s expanding retail landscape. This works in line with DCT’s overarching commitment to attract talented Emiratis and expatriate residents and help them explore rewarding career options in the tourism industry.

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Slovakia Visa Application Center opens in Kuwait

VFS Global has opened new Slovakia Visa Application Centre in Kuwait city in the state of Kuwait. The new centre offers residents of the state of Kuwait travelling to the Central European country greater convenience in accessing professionally-managed visa application submission services. In a statement, VFS Global said the Slovakia Visa Application Centre in the state of Kuwait is the first to be opened in the Middle East region and the fifth Slovakia Visa Application Centre to launch globally. Some of the key features of the Slovakia Visa Application Centre in the state of Kuwait include longer operating hours, professionally-trained staff fluent in the local language, an automated queue-management system for seamless submission procedures and a premium lounge for a more personalised application submission experience. Inaugurating the new Visa Application Centre, Martin Kardoš, Chargé d’affaires ad interim of the Embassy of the Slovak Republic in the state of Kuwait, said, “We believe that in close cooperation with professionals from VFS Global, Kuwaiti and other residents will find services at the new Visa Application Centre more comfortable, helpful and convenient to submit their visa requests.” Under the contract signed with the Slovak Republic, VFS Global will provide outsourced visa processing services in the state of Kuwait, Belarus, Egypt, India, Kazakhstan, Palestine, P R China, Turkey, the United Arab Emirates, and Russia, through 38 Slovakia Visa Application Centres. Also commenting on the launch of the new Slovakia Visa Application Centre in the state of Kuwait, Vinay Malhotra, Regional Group COO – Middle East, South Asia & China, VFS Global, said, “With the opening of the new centre, our steadfast endeavour is to provide residents with seamless visa application submission services in a …

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Magical experience of giving by Novotel & ibis World Trade Centre and ibis One Central

Festive season is the perfect time to share the joy and happiness of giving. The Novotel,  ibis World Trade Centre and ibis One Central team organised a special Christmas Tree-lighting event for children with determination recently to share their love. The festive carols resounded throughout were a delight to the children and their parents alike. The joy of the children resonated within the establishment when Santa Claus walked out bearing gifts for one and all. Rest-assured, this memory shall be cherished and be spoken about for years to come. The countdown to the Christmas Tree Lighting was the finale to the event and who better than Santa, to magically light up the Christmas tree along with the faces of ecstatic children and their loved ones. The festive season is special for everyone, the Novotel and ibis team ensured that each and every single individual left the event with a pleasant memory embedded deep in their hearts.

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Chinese VAC opens in Kuwait

VFS Global has opened a new China Visa Application Center (VAC) in Kuwait, marking the opening of a third such visa submission facility in the Middle East after the launch of similar centers in Dubai and Beirut. A joint statement from the Chinese Embassy in Kuwait and VFS Global said residents applying for a visa to PR China need not visit the embassy to submit their visa applications going forward. The China Visa Application Center in Kuwait City, managed by VFS Global, will proficiently facilitate the end-to-end visa application submission process. Officially inaugurating the new China Visa Application Center, Zhao Liang, Charge d’Affaires —AI, Chinese Embassy in the State of Kuwait, said, “The State of Kuwait is the first Arabian country in the Gulf area to establish diplomatic relations with PR China and in recent years, the cooperation between the two countries in all fields have grown rapidly, thus encouraging the development of robust bilateral relations. To further facilitate and enhance people-to-people exchanges and to promote visa application service standards, PR China has established this new, professionally-managed China Visa Application Center in Kuwait. The new centre will offer the residents of Kuwait a more convenient and highly-efficient visa application service. We believe that the China Visa Application Center in Kuwait City will bring residents greater convenience when applying for a Chinese visa through its comfortable environment, well-equipped facilities and warm and thoughtful service”. Commenting on the center in Kuwait, Vinay Malhotra, Regional Group COO — Middle East, South Asia & China, VFS Global, said, “Ever since we began our partnership with the Government of PR China in 2008, we have steadily expanded the Visa Application Centre network across the Middle …

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RSA Insurance promotes travel insurance

In a bid to find the UAE’s unluckiest traveller with the worst travel photo, search for the UAE’s unluckiest traveller by RSA Insuance returns in its second season from December 4 to 18. The two-week long campaign will give people across the UAE the chance to use their unluckiest travel photos to win a dream vacation – and redeem themselves. Commenting on the campaign, David Harris, Director – Marketing and Distribution, RSA, said, “The campaign aims to address a global conversation on how social media is impacting our behaviour while on holiday. We notice that travellers are too consumed planning for their trip and researching the best Instagrammable spots that they tend to forget taking out travel insurance. Ensuring peace of mind is often a neglected priority for most UAE travellers due to the lack of understanding of covers available in the market. As such, we are launching this campaign as it will enable us to get closer to consumers and raise awareness about the importance of travel insurance.”    

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ADNEC and Abu Dhabi Convention Bureau collaborate to attract key conferences to the capital

Abu Dhabi National Exhibitions Company (ADNEC) and Abu Dhabi Convention Bureau, a division of the Department of Culture and Tourism – Abu Dhabi (DCT Abu Dhabi) have teamed up to win bids to host four leading international conferences in Abu Dhabi – all of them being held in the Middle East region for the first time. These wins, for the World Congress of Nephrology, the Annual Conference of the International Society for Pediatric and Adolescent Diabetes (ISPAD) Congress, the International Baccalaureate (IB) Africa, Europe, Middle East Global Conference, and the XIV World Association for Psychosocial Rehabilitation (WAPR) World Congress – will contribute to enhancing Abu Dhabi’s growing reputation as a global health and education hub. Securing these significant conferences will also support the Abu Dhabi government in its efforts to further develop these sectors, which have been identified as key development areas in the Abu Dhabi Vision 2030 roadmap for the future. HE Saif Saeed Ghobash, Undersecretary, DCT Abu Dhabi, said, “Abu Dhabi is now firmly established as a major player on the global events stage, able to excel at hosting the world’s most prominent conferences and exhibitions. Working in partnership with our colleagues at ADNEC to secure these conferences for the Emirate is further proof of the great strides we are making in positioning Abu Dhabi as a destination of choice for a whole host of major international organisations.” Humaid Matar Al Dhaheri, Group CEO, ADNEC, said, “These four conferences are of strategic importance as we continue our efforts to position the Emirate as a key global hub for health and education, which are among the sectors identified in the Abu Dhabi vision document as crucial to the Emirate’s …

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France launches Arabic website aiming to welcome 100 million tourists by 2020

Atout France, the national French tourism development agency has launched France.fr — the official dedicated Arabic website for France as a destination. With the goal of welcoming 100 million tourists to France by 2020, the Arabic version of the website has been developed to increase interest and footfall from the region. France.fr is fully adapted with the travellers from the Middle East in mind. The content created takes into consideration the cultural nuances and traditions. Besides, social media platforms are also available in Arabic to inspire and encourage followers to share their experiences. User-friendly and optimised for mobile consumption, the new website contains content and information on tourism in France, hotels, restaurants, things to do, culture and heritage, events and museums. Karim Mekachera, Regional Director, Atout France, Middle East, explained, “Digital innovation is at the heart of our marketing initiatives and we have placed a significant focus on content creation, curation and distribution of the content on France in a number of languages to remain truly connected to people around the world. The website’s aim is to boost France’s appeal as a touristic destination, improving its ranking as a top travel destination for the Arab traveller.”

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Slovakia inks deal with VFS Global for visa processing services

VFS Global has signed a contract with the Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs of the Slovak Republic for providing visa services in 10 countries worldwide. As per this new contract, VFS Global will now provide visa services for Slovakia in China, India, Kazakhstan, Palestine, Belarus, Russia, Kuwait, United Arab Emirates, Turkey and Egypt through 38 visa application centres. The rollout of all these new operations is expected to be completed by December 2018. Under the new contract, VFS Global will accept both short and long-term visa applications on behalf of the Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs of the Slovak Republic. Chris Dix, Head – Business Development, VFS Global, said, “We are excited about our new partnership with the Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs of the Slovak Republic. The countries where we will be operating are markets where VFS Global has worked for several years and whose travellers are familiar with our services and expertise. We are also pleased to have the opportunity to serve our new clients in new locations, and bring applicants in these locations the same benefits and high-quality service that we have been offering our customers worldwide for the last 17 years.”

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Inmarsat and Panasonic Avionics enter into landmark strategic collaboration for commercial aviation

Inmarsat and Panasonic Avionics Corporation (Panasonic) have agreed to a strategic collaboration for an initial ten-year period that will enable airlines, aircraft manufacturers and passengers to benefit from the combined expertise of the two companies that have been at the forefront of technology and innovation for nearly four decades. Under the terms of the agreement, Inmarsat will become Panasonic’s exclusive provider of Ka-band IFC for commercial aviation and panasonic will now be able to offer Inmarsat’s high-speed, broadband connectivity service, GX Aviation, powered by Global Xpress. Panasonic will continue to invest in its own network and, with GX Aviation as a primary offering for new business, will be perfectly positioned to serve both its current and future customers. In addition, Inmarsat will now be able to offer Panasonic’s market-leading portfolio of services and NEXT solutions to Inmarsat’s commercial aviation customers. The collaboration presents a unique opportunity to leverage Inmarsat’s proven track record of high-quality and innovative global mobile connectivity, and Panasonic’s market-leading in-flight entertainment, digital services and connectivity solutions. Looking forward, Inmarsat and Panasonic will also collaborate on the development of a next generation GX Aviation terminal, as well as new connectivity-enabled services, data analytics and technology to improve overall end-to-end performance. By delivering this step-change in aviation services capability, airlines will have access to new and better solutions that address widely recognized industry challenges of capacity, coverage and compatibility. This will give greater quality, consistency of experience and more choice to airlines and their passengers in the IFC market, which by some estimates could exceed $100 billion by 2035. Rupert Pearce, Chief Executive Officer, Inmarsat, said, “Our highly complementary collaboration with Panasonic combines the unique expertise and proven capabilities …

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IHG signs deal with Al-Arabiya Real Estate Company to launch Staybridge Suites in Kuwait

IHG has signed a management agreement with the Al-Arabiya Real Estate Company, owned by The Bukhamseen Group, to launch Staybridge Suites in Kuwait. The new hotel is due to open in January 2022 and will add to IHG’s growing portfolio in the Middle East. Located in Salmiya, the 120-keys Staybridge Suites Kuwait Salmiya will offer long-stay guests a choice of one-bedroom and two-bedroom suites. The modern serviced apartments will be stylishly designed and furnished, featuring separate living and working areas, fully equipped kitchens, state-of-the-art entertainment systems and free WiFi. Guests staying at the hotel will have easy access to business areas such as downtown where major banks and financial institutions are located, as well as tourist attractions such as the Marine Museum, Shaab Leisure Centre Park and a variety of shopping malls and restaurants. With the modern-day corporate traveller in mind, Staybridge Suites Salmiya will offer facilities such as an on-site fitness centre, so that guests can maintain their exercise regimen and a swimming pool for a refreshing dip after a long day. Pascal Gauvin, Managing Director, India, Middle East & Africa, IHG said, “We are delighted to partner with Al-Arabiya Real Estate Company, owned by The Bukhamseen Group to debut Staybridge Suites in Kuwait. The Bukhamseen Group has been one of our most valued partners in the Middle East since we signed one of our first Holiday Inn hotels in the region with them more than 40 years ago. We are excited to be working even more closely together to expand our footprint in Kuwait and introduce Staybridge Suites, to cater to the demands of extended stay travellers. We look forward to opening the doors of Staybridge Suites Kuwait Salmiya …

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