ATOAI takes Ker­ala on an ad­ven­ture

The 13th An­nual Con­ven­tion of Ad­ven­ture Tour Op­er­a­tors As­so­ci­a­tion of In­dia (ATOAI) held in Ku­marakom, Ker­ala, was at­tended by over 400 del­e­gates from 16 states. Around 50 ex­hibitors show­cased their prod­ucts.

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The ADTOI Con­ven­tion at Ker­ala re­ceived an ex­cel­lent re­sponse from the par­tic­i­pants, in­forms Te­jbir Singh Anand, Vice Pres­i­dent, ATOAI. He elab­o­rates, “With each year, the ATOAI con­ven­tions have been get­ting bet­ter. We moved away from the reg­u­lar for­mat of just busi­ness ses­sions. Our con­ven­tions now of­fer real time ac­tiv­i­ties and ex­pe­ri­ences along with knowl­edge ses­sions. It is based on a three-night four­day for­mat with max­i­mum de­lib­er­a­tions. It has deeper im­pact on all del­e­gates to go back with hands-on ex­pe­ri­ence to sell the des­ti­na­tion and prod­uct ac­cu­rately to their clients.”

The theme of the con­ven­tion - Emerg­ing Path­ways - res­onated through the busi­ness ses­sions and the des­ti­na­tion that was cho­sen for the con­ven­tion. Anand points out that the busi­ness ses­sions en­cour­aged stake­hold­ers to cre­ate part­ner­ships and en­gage with seem­ingly non re­lated brands in the ap­parel, me­dia and com­mu­ni­ca­tions sec­tors etc. which may have the po­ten­tial to break profit bar­ri­ers and grow busi­ness through iden­ti­fy­ing and tap­ping into pre­vi­ously un­tapped mar­kets. The ses­sions also dwelled upon un­tapped op­por­tu­ni­ties and out- ofthe-box ideas from the best in the busi­ness; ac­quir­ing prac­ti­cal knowl­edge about dig­i­tal mar­ket­ing; un­der­stand­ing risk and man­ag­ing out­comes; get­ting prac­ti­cal with ad­ven­ture in­sur­ance; prac­ti­cal ap­pli­ca­tion in ad­ven­ture travel op­er­a­tions and how the in­dus­try play­ers can ben­e­fit from in­tro­duc­ing sys­tems, pro­cesses and au­to­ma­tion in their busi­ness.

Anand feels that Ker­ala has been at the fore­front of In­dian tourism and is now at­tempt­ing to brand it­self as a great des­ti­na­tion which of­fers ad­ven­ture and ac­tive ex­pe­ri­ences too. “With around 400 del­e­gates ex­pe­ri­enc­ing Ker­ala on the ac­tive side, it has al­ready made an im­pact and the trade has gone back af­ter wit­ness­ing the po­ten­tial of ac­tive jour­neys in Ker­ala. Ker­ala, af­ter re­al­is­ing the po­ten­tial of ad­ven­ture tourism, has al­ready sanc­tioned a lot of funds for the pro­mo­tion and devel­op­ment of ad­ven­ture travel in the state,” adds Anand.

Iden­ti­fy­ing the trend in travel busi­ness, Anand as­serts that ad­ven­ture travel is now re­defin­ing travel in gen­eral. This seg­ment, which was once niche, has not only be­come main­stream, but is now lead­ing it. He ex­plains, “A sus­tain­able, re­spon­si­ble, eco-friendly world is in­creas­ingly grav­i­tat­ing to­wards the of­fer­ings of this genre whose core is now be­ing de­fined as be­ing in a nat­u­ral en­vi­ron­ment, learn­ing and mean­ing­ful ex­pe­ri­ences. The new ad­ven­ture trav­eller is seek­ing trans­for­ma­tion, ex­panded world­view, na­ture and dis­cov­ery, men­tal health, learn­ing, con­nec­tions, fun and thrill, bet­ter phys­i­cal health and unique ex­pe­ri­ences.”

del­e­gates ex­pe­ri­enc­ing side, it has made an im­pact and the trade has gone back af­ter wit­ness­ing the po­ten­tial

Fur­ther, in the field of ad­ven­ture tourism, prod­ucts are be­ing cre­ated across the length and breadth of the coun­try, be­yond the Hi­malayas. Ev­ery des­ti­na­tion is cu­rat­ing and cre­at­ing its own ad­ven­ture prod­ucts. Anand says, “New ad­ven­ture prod­ucts and newer re­gions of­fer­ing ad­ven­ture ac­tiv­i­ties are pop­u­lat­ing the map. Th­ese are very in­ter­est­ing times for our in­dus­try. Th­ese new op­por­tu­ni­ties also come with new sets of chal­lenges, like safety and sus­tain­abil­ity, skilled man­power and right reg­u­la­tory en­vi­ron­ment, ed­u­cat­ing and de­vel­op­ing the right per­spec­tive for the fra­ter­nity.”

Te­jbir Singh Anand Vice Pres­i­dent ATOAI

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