Category Archives: Agents

Kurban Travel inks agreement with Sabre to further reach

Kurban Travel, a leading travel agency in Lebanon, will use innovative technology from Sabre to create an intuitive and personalised experience for its travellers. The five-year agreement will enable Kurban Travel agents to access Sabre’s Global Distribution System (GDS) to shop, book and manage travel content from 400 airlines, 900,000 hotel options and 40 car rental brands. Kurban Travel agents will leverage the industry-leading content, data-driven insights and intuitive interface of the new Sabre Red Workspace – the next-generation travel agency desktop – allowing them to become true travel consultants. “We are proud to partner with Kurban Travel, which will join our distinguished customer base in the region. We are constantly evolving our technology to deliver the world’s most advanced travel platform, enabling us to offer agencies faster innovation and more flexible solutions infused with data-driven insights. We stand ready to help Kurban Travel achieve its mission to grow and optimise its business, while solving travel challenges,” said Raymond Vrijenhoek, Vice President, Sabre Travel Network Middle East.

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Sharjah’s Central Hub to be ready by 2019

Arada has unveiled the masterplan of the Central Hub, the focal point of its ground-breaking Sharjah mega development, Aljada. Spread over 1.9 million square feet, the hub is defined by its lush-green space and many water features, and is designed to be fully walkable. In total, there will be 732,000 square feet of green space in the Central Hub, including a large landscaped community park that covers a quarter of the complex. Work on the first phase of the Central Hub – which will include Arada’s state-of-the-art sales centre, an outdoor cinema space, a food truck village, skating rink and other family-friendly facilities – has already begun and is scheduled to be completed by the end of the first quarter of 2019. Arada is on track to complete the entire complex by 2022. Talking about the development, HE Sheikh Sultan bin Ahmed Al Qasimi, Chairman, Arada, said, “Our plan has always been to build extraordinary, engaging and life-changing communities. That is reflected in the bold final design of the Central Hub, which will soon be a new focal point, not just for Aljada, but for the whole of Sharjah and the rest of the UAE as well. We are working on putting together some incredible new partnerships for the Central Hub, and we will be announcing these in the coming months.”  

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Nirvana ties up with Tune Protect as its travel-protection partner

Nirvana Over the world (NOW) has joined hands with Tune Protect as their travel protection partner for travellers, globally. Commenting on the tie-up, Lina Bassam, Executive Director – Wholesale, Nirvana Travel & Tousim, said, “Travel is the buzzword and the number of travellers from the UAE or to the UAE is growing rapidly. We have partnered with Tune Protect EMEIA to offer a variety of travel assurance plans to our travellers. Our collaboration aims at delivering a hassle-free, seamless experience, and peace of mind to our travellers, before, during and after their travel.” Arijit Munshi, General Manager, Tune Protect EMEIA, said, “Tune Protect, along with our local insurance partner, has been able to launch over 10 different travel protection plans, which can be tailor-made and diversely beneficial catering to vivid segments of travellers”. A basic Tune Protect travel protection plan offers best-in-class benefits like medical expenses due to hospitalisation anywhere in the world, worldwide accidental death and disablement coverage, loss or damage of baggage, trip delay, etc. Both Nirvana and Tune Protect are determined and committed to delivering unique and convenient risk-management solutions to travellers. This intended collaboration will bring together various comprehensive and cost-effective travel assurance covers at the time of planning a trip.

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Dubai World Trade Centre welcomes Boston Consulting Group to One Central

Dubai World Trade Centre welcomes The Boston Consulting Group (BCG) after it relocates its Dubai office to One Central. The consulting firm will continue to serve its clients from the public as well as private sector. BCG’s newly-designed 66,000 square foot offices will occupy the 6th and 7th floor of One Central’s Offices 3, with exclusive access to a large terrace with views of Burj Khalifa, DIFC and The Museum of the Future. His Excellency Helal Saeed Almarri, Director General, Dubai World Trade Centre Authority (DWTCA) and Dubai Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing (DTCM) said, “The DWTC Authority is delighted to welcome BCG to the One Central development. By attracting one of the world’s leading advisers on business strategy to establish their Dubai office in One Central, we are reiterating both, the development and Dubai’s attractiveness to international corporates and businesses as an unrivalled platform. Through our business-conducive free-zone ecosystem, uniquely complemented by One Central, DWTCA delivers a distinctive destination proposition that emphasises Dubai’s global status as a progressive, hyperconnected, competitive hub for international business.” Joerg Hildebrandt, Managing Partner, The Boston Consulting Group Middle East said, “With this new home, we are at the epicenter of business districts. The move is of strategic importance and will provide our dynamic organisation with a more centralised position for future growth and development within world-class facilities.”

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Bahrain Commerce and Tourism inaugurates ‘Vatel Hospitality and Tourism Business School’

Vatel Bahrain Hospitality School was officially inaugurated on World Tourism Day by HE Zayed bin Rashid Al Zayani, Minister of Industry, Commerce and Tourism. The opening ceremony was attended by HE Shaikh Khaled bin Humood Al Khalifa, Chief Executive Officer, Bahrain Tourism and Exhibitions Authority (BTEA), and other key officials, including the Ambassador of France to the Kingdom of Bahrain, HE Cécile Longé, GCC Ambassadors. Vatel currently has 29 schools, 7,000 students and over 29,000 alumni who are a living proof of the success of its unique teaching concept further positioning the school as the first worldwide business school group in hospitality and tourism management. “The launch of Vatel Bahrain represents a cornerstone in the development of the Kingdom’s hospitality sector. The BTEA, in collaboration with Vatel Group, aims to train the national workforce in accordance to international standards, as well as provide students with the qualifications required in order to obtain job opportunities,” said the HE Zayed bin Rashid Al Zayani. HE Shaikh Khaled bin Humood Al Khalifa, said, “We are delighted to announce the launch of Vatel School which will provide students with comprehensive learning experiences through its 4-year academic programme. Students will be matched with jobs that meet their academic qualifications to utilise their expertise and knowledge.”  

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Jamal Abdulnazar enters the Gallery of Legends

Jamal Abdulnazar, Chief Executive Officer, Cozmo Travel, has been conferred the Gallery of Legends trophy at the Arabian Travel Awards held in Dubai. Having moved to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia to start his career in tourism at the age of 21, Abdulnazar’s dedication and passion for the industry made sure that he never looked back. With a mission to cater to everyone with travel aspirations, he set up a travel agency in 2010 with a team size of five. Today, this pioneering agency has a staff strength of 900, turnover of 1.2 billion dollars and 100 branches across seven countries. His phenomenal achievements are attributed to his progressive vision and leadership.

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Nasir Jamal Khan felicitated as DDP Game Changer

Nasir Jamal Khan, Chief Executive Officer, Al Naboodah Travel and Tourism, has been honoured with the DDP Game Changer award. With a career spanning over 30 years, Khan is an influential personality among travel and tourism industry players in the region due to his vast knowledge and experience in the two key markets of Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the UAE. With a rich network of strong relationships, he has successfully placed his organisation as a leading travel company on the tourism map of the UAE. He gets the right travel apparatus to suit the clientele according to time and relevance.

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Emirates Holidays becomes official tour operator for AFC Asian Cup UAE 2019

Emirates Holidays has partnered up with the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) to become the official tour operator for the AFC Asian Cup UAE 2019. The 17th edition of the continent’s prestigious football tournament will take place in the United Arab Emirates between January 5, 2019 and February 1, 2019.  Through the partnership, Emirates Holidays offers a broad range of excellent value packages to football fans traveling to Abu Dhabi, Al Ain, Dubai and Sharjah to support their teams. Each package includes match ticket(s), accommodation and return flights with Emirates Airline. Robin Parry, Vice President, Emirates Holidays, said, “We are thrilled to become the official tour operator of the AFC Asian Cup UAE 2019. Starting from today, supporters can seamlessly book match ticket, flight and accommodation with Emirates Holidays and enjoy the excellent travel experience our award-winning airline and reputable hotel partners offer. We see exciting opportunities for the company in sport tourism and continue to seek ways to accommodate the growing demand. We look forward to welcoming our football fan customers in the UAE.” Dato’ Windsor John, General Secretary, Asian Football Confederation, said, “Asian football continues to make giant strides on the world stage and the remarkable growth and stature of the AFC Asian Cup exemplifies the undeniable progress of football in the Continent. Emirates have been a long-standing partner of the AFC and we would like to thank them for their firm belief in the development and ever-improving proposition of Asian football.

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Arrival flights around Mecca up 20% ahead of Hajj: Travelport

As of July 2018, arrival flights around the holy city of Mecca ahead of this year’s Hajj were up 20 per cent when compared to the last year’s pilgrimage, according to an analysis conducted by Travelport. With Hajj being one of the five pillars of Islam, all Muslims are obliged to make the Islamic pilgrimage at least once in their lifetimes if they have the means to do so. Over five days, it involves undertaking a series of rituals including trekking through the desert and drinking water from a holy well. Every year, in excess of one million people from all over the world fly into western Saudi Arabia to perform Hajj, making it one of the largest annual spikes in global air traffic. To manage numbers from overseas, Saudi Arabia sets quotas for countries based on their population of Muslims. Local governments and/or private travel companies then allocate places for citizens. This year, the pilgrimage begins this weekend and concludes on the first day of Eid AlAdha. During this period, in total, as many as three million pilgrims are expected to participate. With such vast numbers involved, pilgrims start arriving in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia as early as one month before the official start of Hajj to avoid the crowds at holy sites and prepare for the pilgrimage. Due to their proximity to relevant locations, the three airports pilgrims tend to fly into are: King Abdulaziz International Airport, Jeddah; Ta’if Regional Airport, Ta’if; and Prince Mohammed Bin Abdulaziz International Airport, Medina.

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dnata enters German market by acquisition of Tropo

dnata has acquired Tropo, a Germany-based tour operator, from ProSiebenSat.1 Group. The acquisition marks dnata’s entry into the German market and extends its global network of travel businesses in Europe, the Middle East, Asia and Australasia. The purchase agreement also includes TV media volume worth several million euros for 2018 and 2019. The contract parties agreed not to disclose the details of the acquisition, which is subject to approval by the antitrust authorities. Tropo is a dynamic tour operator for low-cost and high-quality travel packages, last-minute holidays and hotel reservations offering up to 200 million vacation options every day. ProSiebenSat.1 has held a majority stake in Tropo GmbH since 2012. In the roughly six years it has belonged to the media group, the tour operator has increased its brand awareness significantly through the use of TV advertising. The company has successfully defended its position against the challenging market environment in its highly-competitive travel segment over the past years. Iain Andrew, Divisional Senior Vice President, Travel Services, dnata, said, “We are delighted with this opportunity to have Tropo become part of dnata travel. This acquisition enables us to enter the important and valuable German travel market, and enhances our portfolio of travel services in Europe. We see potential for significant synergies between Tropo and our other travel businesses around the world to provide very attractive and unique offerings to inbound and outbound travellers to and from Germany.

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