OTOAI fil­lip to Ras Al Khaimah tourism

In a bid to open new av­enues for the out­bound tourism in­dus­try in In­dia, Out­bound Tour Op­er­a­tors As­so­ci­a­tion of In­dia (OTOAI) con­ducted its third an­nual con­ven­tion in Ras Al Khaimah from Septem­ber 13-16, 2017, to show­case the new des­ti­na­tion and de­lib­erat


The 3rd OTOAI Con­ven­tion was at­tended by over 170 del­e­gates from Delhi, Mum­bai, Kolkata, Chen­nai and Gu­jarat. The event was in­au­gu­rated by Shaji Thomas, Direc­torDesti­na­tion Tourism De­vel­op­ment, Ras Al Khaimah; Guldeep Singh Sahni, Pres­i­dent, OTOAI; Riaz Mun­shi, Con­ven­tion Chair­man and Vice Pres­i­dent, OTOAI; Mo­hamed Khater,

Se­nior Tourism De­vel­op­ment Man­ager, Gov­ern­ment of Ras Al Khaimah; Gur­deep

Gu­jral, Con­ven­tion Co-chair­man and Joint Sec­re­tary, OTOAI; SanJeet, In­dia Rep­re­sen­ta­tive, Ras Al Khaimah, and

Ma­hen­dra Vakharia, Chair­man-Western Chap­ter, OTOAI.

Haitham Mat­tar, Chief Ex­ec­u­tive Of­fi­cer, Ras Al Khaimah Tourism De­vel­op­ment Au­thor­ity (RAKTDA), com­mented, “In­dia is cur­rently our fourth largest in­ter­na­tional source mar­ket with year-onyear growth of 22 per cent in the first half of 2017. It will be an im­por­tant con­trib­u­tor to our vi­sion and Des­ti­na­tion 2019 tourism strat­egy. We have seen a grow­ing trend from In­dian in­bound tourism for short leisure stays, MICE, and wed­dings. Our aim is to pro­mote the full breadth of unique ac­tiv­i­ties and events that can be en­joyed in the emi­rate, with a view to en­cour­age In­dian trav­ellers to lengthen their stay in the des­ti­na­tion. We are op­ti­mistic that through fo­cused ef­forts and par­tic­i­pa­tion in var­i­ous MICE and trade events, tourism from In­dia will con­tinue to de­velop in the com­ing years.”

Sahni said, “RAKTDA has put its best foot for­ward to show­case the prod­ucts to our mem­bers. We can’t thank them

enough for the ar­range­ments they have done to give ev­ery­one a first-hand ex­pe­ri­ence from the des­ti­na­tion. Our in­ten­tion was to cre­ate op­por­tu­ni­ties for the fu­ture and we will work with the mem­bers to im­ple­ment the knowl­edge we have gath­ered dur­ing the Con­ven­tion.”

The as­so­ci­a­tion de­lib­er­ated on top­ics like tech­nol­ogy

as the game changer and how it can be made ac­ces­si­ble to ev­ery tour op­er­a­tor and travel agent; how travel agents should find their strengths and de­velop a niche in the mar­ket; im­prove the level of ser­vice they pro­vide to their cus­tomers; train front­line staff; dig­i­tal mar­ket­ing and mo­bile tech­nol­ogy and the im­por­tance and press­ing de­mand to ed­u­cate the trade from Tier-II

and III mar­kets amongst var­i­ous other is­sues.

Mun­shi fur­ther elab­o­rated that there are many ver­ti­cals of travel that have been un­touched by as­sisted play­ers of the in­dus­try like wed­dings, events, MICE, etc., where new play­ers are en­ter­ing the mar­ket and the old play­ers have to re­vamp their func­tion­ing in

or­der to in­crease their rev­enue streams. “A con­ven­tion is a win-win sit­u­a­tion both for the des­ti­na­tion as well as the mem­bers. We strive to host our con­ven­tions at des­ti­na­tions which need more tourist num­bers from In­dia and in re­turn, our mem­bers have been able to ex­pe­ri­ence a new des­ti­na­tion to add their prod­uct port­fo­lio,” said Mun­shi.

Haitham Mat­tar

&KLHI ([HFXWLYH 2IÀFHU 5DV $O .KDLPDK Tourism De­vel­op­ment Au­thor­ity (RAKTDA)

Guldeep Singh Sahni In­dia Travel Award win­ner and Pres­i­dent, OTOAI

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