Category Archives: NTO (National Tourist Offices)

GCC travellers have multiple options from Jamaica

The Jamaica Tourist Board has ambitious tourism plans, focused on expanding its reach in the GCC market. Recognizing the growing interest in Caribbean travel among GCC residents, the JTB is actively investing in targeted developing and growing the market to increase visitation figures. Travelers from the GCC can easily reach Jamaica through convenient flight connections via major airlines linking through the United Kingdom, the United States of America, and Canada. This connectivity provides seamless travel options for citizens and residents of the GCC looking to experience the beauty and culture of Jamaica. The residents of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries are renowned as some of the most well-traveled individuals globally, constantly seeking new destinations and experiences fueled by their healthy disposable income. Their adventurous spirit and eagerness to explore make them ideal candidates to appreciate Jamaica’s allure. Passengers from the United Arab Emirates (UAE) have several airline choices for flights to its main airports in Montego Bay and Kingston. Emirates, Etihad Airways, British Airways, and Air Canada offer routes with convenient connections. Qatar Airways also provides suitable connections to major US airports such as New York, Miami, and Chicago, offering additional options for travelers from the GCC region. Other GCC countries can access Jamaica via connections through the UAE, enhancing accessibility to the island. “As part of our strategic vision, the Jamaica Tourist Board is committed to investing in the GCC market and enhancing awareness of Jamaica’s attractions among travelers in this region,” said Hon. Edmund Bartlett, Minister of Tourism of Jamaica. “We believe there is immense potential for increased visitation from the GCC.” “Jamaica is an ideal destination for citizens and residents of the GCC countries seeking a …

Read More »

Tourism Seychelles Middle East showcases its vibrant offerings for the region

Tourism Seychelles Middle East showcased its vibrant offerings and strategic collaborations at the Arabian Travel Market with nine partners led by Minister Sylvestre Radegonde, Seychelles Minister of Foreign Affairs and Tourism, the delegation underscored Seychelles’ commitment to enhancing tourism partnerships and opportunities in the Middle East. Minister Radegonde was accompanied by Sherin Francis, Principal Secretary, and Bernadette Willemin, Director General Marketing, who engaged in fruitful discussions and strategic initiatives throughout the event. Seychelles’ participation was further reinforced by the support of distinguished Destination Management Companies, such as 7° South, Luxe Voyage Holidays, Luxury Travel, Masons Travel, Ocean Blue Travel, Summer Rain Tours, along with renowned hotels including Berjaya Resorts Seychelles, Eden Bleu Hotel, Savoy Seychelles Resort & Spa, and Coral Strand Smart Choice Hotel. Ambassador Gervais Moumou, Seychelles resident Ambassador in Abu Dhabi, added diplomatic presence and support to the delegation. Highlights of the event included the signing of two Memorandums of Understanding (MOUs) with key industry partners. The first MOU was signed with Emirates Airlines, enhancing partnerships to strengthen connectivity and accessibility to Seychelles. The second MOU was signed with dnata Travel to foster joint collaborations and further promote Seychelles as a premier travel destination. Additionally, bilateral meetings with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Maldives further strengthened regional collaboration and cooperation. Ahmed Fathallah, the Tourism Seychelles Middle East representative, commented, “This event provided an exceptional platform for Tourism Seychelles Middle East to foster existing relationships, explore new opportunities, and reinforce Seychelles’ allure as a premier travel destination. The engagement with key industry stakeholders and media have amplified our efforts to showcase Seychelles’ unique offerings and commitment to sustainable tourism.” The Arabian Travel Market served as …

Read More »

33% of UAE travellers are looking for trips over 1 or 2 weeks in Eid Al Adha

Skyscanner revealed that 33% of UAE travellers are looking for trips that are over 1-2 weeks long for the Eid Al Adha break. New York, Tokyo and Athens are the top trending destinations this Eid Al Adha 2024 for the residents of UAE. Findings reveal that 14 June 2024 is the most popular travel departure date during this period, and more than half of UAE travellers (53%) are searching for trips that are one week or less. At the same time, 33% of travellers are looking for trips that are over 1-2 weeks long, and 14% are looking to book holidays for up to a month*. Skyscanner unveils five destinations experiencing a surge in popularity among travellers from UAE. From the vibrant streets of New York to the pristine shores of Malé, these are the trending destinations witnessing the highest year-on-year spike in searches for June departures*. 5 Trending Destinations 1. New York (525%) 2. Tokyo (330%) 3. Athens (257%) 4. Dublin (212%) 5. Malé (205%) Skyscanner also revealed the most searched destinations by UAE travellers ahead of Eid Al Adha. Offering a glimpse into the travel preferences and trends shaping the region, the data sheds light on where UAE residents are looking to escape during this holiday season. 5 Most Searched Cities by UAE travellers 1. London 2. Athens 3. New York 4. Cairo 5. Manchester  

Read More »

Ajman Tourism drives awareness campaign to regulate holiday homes sector

The Ajman Department of Tourism Development has initiated a comprehensive awareness campaign aimed at fostering regulation within the Holiday Homes sector. The primary objective is to heighten awareness among investors in the tourism sector regarding the prerequisites and procedures for obtaining licenses and permits essential for engaging in this emerging tourism venture within the emirate. His Excellency Mahmood Khaleel Alhashmi, Director General of the Ajman Department of Tourism Development, emphasized that the campaign seeks to familiarize investors with Emiri Decree No. 6 of 2023, which governs Holiday Homes in Ajman. Furthermore, the initiative includes conducting awareness workshops to equip investors with the knowledge required to leverage this investment opportunity. The overarching goal is to pave the way for expanded avenues in tourism investment within the emirate, drawing more investors keen on capitalizing on the distinctive tourism growth in both Ajman and the broader country. Alhashmi highlighted the department’s intent to forge collaboration agreements with leading reservation platforms. This strategic move aims to streamline processes and establish a transparent legal framework for showcasing Holiday Homes on these platforms, benefiting all stakeholders involved. Holiday Homes services were inaugurated in Ajman in 2023 with the intent of fortifying the tourism sector and enhancing the emirate’s appeal to visitors. This initiative was set in motion under the directives of H.H. Sheikh Humaid bin Rashid Al Nuaimi, Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Ajman, aligning with the strategic vision for tourism development as per Emiri Decree No. 03 of 2012. Among the services rendered is the provision of proactive guidelines and procedures to regulate Holiday Home activities, along with facilitating the acquisition of permits and licenses. Interested parties can easily register for these services through …

Read More »

Air Cairo appoints Almosafer as exclusive General Sales Agent in Saudi Arabia

Air Cairo announced Almosafer as their exclusive general sales agent (GSA) in Saudi Arabia. This highlights the importance of KSA as a primary market for Air Cairo, as both parties will work together to meet the needs of travellers from the Kingdom. Air Cairo selected Almosafer for its strong market presence and esteemed reputation in Saudi Arabia. Almosafer will play a key role in boosting Air Cairo’s sales across the Kingdom, by leveraging its extensive customer base to offer promotional deals and on-ground activities, while utilizing the strength of Almosafer’s businesses, such as “Discover Saudi,” its destination management company, and “Mawasim,” its Hajj & Umrah tour operator. Air Cairo offers greater connectivity and convenience through its fleet of well-maintained aircrafts. The airline has been expanding its network since its inception in 2003. With the recent addition of a more modern Airbus fleet, the airline reinforces its dedication to providing world-class comfort and convenience. As a leading airline in the region, it is focused on offering safe travel and ensuring greater connectivity and accessibility to its valued passengers. Pilot Ahmed Shannan, Chairman of the Board of Directors at Air Cairo Airlines, said about the partnership “We are delighted to collaborate with Almosafer to offer our services to a broad spectrum of travelers from Saudi Arabia and beyond. We are confident that Almosafer’s expertise and credibility in the region will enable us to broaden our reach and offer cost-effective travel options to all.” Muzzammil Ahussain, CEO of Almosafer, emphasized the significance of this collaboration, stating, “We are excited to welcome Air Cairo among our esteemed partners. We are confident that this collaboration will enhance the travel sector in the region and offer greater …

Read More »

VisitBritain and the Saudi Tourism Authority sign agreement to boost tourism

VisitBritain and the Saudi Tourism Authority signed a Declaration of Intent, setting out areas of co-operation between Britain and Saudi Arabia to develop and grow tourism. The Declaration, announced during GREAT FUTURES, a major trade expo being held in Riyadh by the UK Government’s GREAT campaign in partnership with the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia’s Government, was officially signed by VisitBritain CEO Patricia Yates and the CEO of the Saudi Tourism Authority Fahd Hamidaddin. VisitBritain and the Saudi Tourism Authority will collaborate on sharing knowledge and expertise on both domestic and international tourism. H.E. Ahmed Al-Khateeb, Minister of Tourism of Saudi Arabia and Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Saudi Tourism Authority, said: “This agreement offers enormous opportunities for Saudi Arabia and UK to boost tourism and underlines the close relationship between the two countries. We are proud to have hosted more than 165,000 friends from Britain between January and March this year and to have welcomed 100 million visitors in 2023. “We are developing remarkable projects that celebrate our unique culture and heritage as part of our $800 billion (£640 billion) investment in the Saudi tourism industry, aiming for them to become as iconic as UK attractions like the Tower of London and Stonehenge, and we see limitless potential ahead to welcome visitors from Britain and around the world.” UK Culture Secretary Lucy Frazer said: “Our tourism industry is an integral part of what makes Britain so great, from our breathtaking landscapes and coastlines, to the treasure trove of heritage and culture to be found in our towns, villages and cities – all backed by a brilliant, dedicated workforce. “We’re committed to helping the sector keep growing from strength to …

Read More »

TAT and dnata sign agreement to boost tourism

The Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) and dnata Travel Group signed a Strategic Partnership Agreement with the aim of enhancing tourism to Thailand. The partnership seeks to leverage dnata’s extensive global network, particularly in the GCC region, to drive increased tourist arrivals from the Middle East to Thailand. By focusing on key niche markets and promoting quality leisure destinations within the kingdom, both TAT and dnata aim to enhance Thailand’s appeal and attract discerning travelers. Under the Strategic Partnership Agreement, TAT and dnata will collaborate on a series of joint promotions tailored to elevate Thailand’s tourism profile across the GCC countries, including the UAE, Oman, Bahrain, and Saudi Arabia. These promotions will target niche tourism segments such as sports, luxury, honeymoon, and wellness, offering tailored experiences to travelers seeking unique and memorable vacations. The agreement was signed by Ms. Thapanee Kiatphaibool, Governor of the Tourism Authority of Thailand, and Mr. John Bevan, CEO of the dnata Travel Group, at a ceremony held at the Thailand Pavilion, ATM 2024. Also present were Mr. Rashid Al Awadhi, Senior Vice President – Middle East and India at the dnata Travel Group, Mr. Siripakorn Cheawsamoot, TAT Deputy Governor for International Marketing, and Mr. Nithee Seeprae, TAT Deputy Governor for Marketing Communications, along with other officials from both organizations. Ms. Thapanee Kiatphaibool, TAT Governor, stated, “The Tourism Authority of Thailand is pleased to collaborate with the dnata Travel Group. Through this agreement, our goal is to collectively implement the most effective strategies and practices to expand Thailand’s marketing presence and establish it as a ‘Quality Leisure Destination.’ This initiative emphasizes enhancing Thailand’s reputation as a unique leisure destination that offers unparalleled quality and value. We …

Read More »

Saudi Arabia’s new carrier Riyadh Air and Tourism Authority partner to enhance travel experience for travellers

Riyadh Air and Saudi Tourism Authority (STA), have signed a significant memorandum of understanding (MoU) at Dubai’s Arabian Travel Market, that will enhance the travel experience for passengers to and from Saudi Arabia. Riyadh Air aims to fly to over 100 countries by 2030, and through this partnership, both entities will collaborate on various initiatives to enhance the level of service for tourists. STA CEO Fhad Hamidaddin said: “Increasing Saudi’s connectivity with the world is a key pillar of our tourism strategy and will ensure we sustain our rapid growth and meet our new ambitious target of 150 million visits by 2030. This exciting new partnership with Riyadh Air will support our goals and ensure more visitors can travel to experience the cool mountains, pristine waters and dynamic cities that make Saudi a great year-round destination.” “We are currently connected to over 180 destinations and are aiming to triple annual passenger traffic to 330 million by 2030 and this new agreement will help turbocharge these efforts.” Commenting on the partnership, Riyadh Air CEO Tony Douglas added: “This is another momentous day in the history of Riyadh Air. Working alongside the STA to elevate the travel experience for our guests and those coming to visit the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia signifies what we’re all about. We are elevating standards across the board in aviation to previously unseen levels. We have a shared commitment to travel and tourism in the Kingdom along with our forward-thinking approach to innovation, sustainability, and the satisfaction of our guests.”

Read More »

South African tourism board conducts special training for selected agents in the UAE

South African tourism board conducted a specialised training for 50 top agents in the UAE by Neliswa Nkani, Hub Head – MEISEA, South African Tourism. She reiterated that Middle East is an important market for South African tourism as it has many offerings which can be enjoyed by the clientele in the Middle East. This training enabled the agents to find out some of the hidden gems in the nation and the fact that connectivity play a pivotal role with all the major Middle East carriers such as Emirates, Qatar Airways bringing in the numbers from the region. She reiterated that there are many DMCs in South Africa which offer unique experiences which caters to this market and requested the agents to connect with them so that it is possible to further grow numbers from the region. She further reiterated that there is MICE and incentive travel which is also a new trend coming up in the nation. Agents asked about the various challengers which can be addressed by the tourism board.

Read More »

Abu Dhabi Convention and Exhibition Bureau announces new visa support for Indian destination weddings

In a bid to establish Abu Dhabi as a premier wedding destination, the Abu Dhabi Convention and Exhibition Bureau (ADCEB) announced an initiative to extend visa support to Indian nationals hosting destination weddings across the Emirate. Unveiled during the ongoing Arabian Travel Market 2024 and taking place from May 2024 onwards, the new visa initiative contributes to Abu Dhabi’s Tourism Strategy 2030, which aims to boost visitor numbers to 39.3 million by 2030. The Destination Wedding segment is among the newest verticals to join ADCEB as part of an overarching objective to attract domestic and international visitors and increase the sector’s contribution to the GDP to AED 90 billion as per the 2030 strategy. India is recognised as one of the largest markets for destination weddings globally, making it a key target market for Abu Dhabi. By extending visa support to Indian weddings, in the form of absorbing costs, ADCEB’s Destination Wedding segment aims to position Abu Dhabi as a world-leading destination for weddings and celebrations of all kind. It provides an avenue to amplify the Emirate’s unique cultural and entertainment offerings, cultural attractions and natural landscapes for international audiences. Weddings are also a key revenue stream for the hospitality sector, driving venue and hotel room occupancy, and the service industry sectors such as wedding planning, photography, catering, personal services and more. The Abu Dhabi Convention and Exhibition Bureau plays a crucial role in organising business events, destination weddings & celebrations in the Emirate. It brings together experts and stakeholders to secure convention business and coordinate strategies for bid development to promote Abu Dhabi as a leading business tourism & celebrations hub.

Read More »