High expectation from the new outbound season

Posted On Apr 24, 2015

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High expectation from the new outbound season
NTOs and travel and tourism industry have high expectation from the upcoming outbound season. They expect it to be better than previous season.


National Tourism Offices (NTOs) and tourism industry of India expect that the new outbound tourism season in India will better than pervious year. There is new buoyancy in the market due to strong signs of economic recovery in the country. All this going to positively impact Indian outbound tourism, and the new outbound season is expected to see a large number of traffic of tourists from India to abroad. “With a strong and stable government and positive consumer sentiments, outbound travel out of India is expected to rise during 2015.” He further said that outbound travel has today evolved to become an inherent part of the urban Indian’s lifestyle. Statistically, India is one of the world’s fastest growing outbound travel markets and behaviourally, travelers are now willing to explore new destinations and experiences,” said Nishant Kashikar, Country Manager, India & Gulf, Tourism Australia, adding that travel has moved beyond routine sightseeing and has become more experiential driven. There is a rising trend of Indian travelers opting for non-traditional destinations like Hamilton Island, Kangaroo Island, Ayers Rock and Tasmania. “We have also seen a growing interest for culinary and sports tourism with experimenting with international cuisines and attending sporting events features high on the travel wish list.” Steven Dixon, Regional Manager – South & South East Asia, Tourism New Zealand, said that arrivals from India are typically high in April and June and then again from October to December. This year Tourism New Zealand also expects to experience a spike over February and March due to the ICC Cricket World Cup 2015, which New Zealand has co-hosted with Australia. “The numbers are not through yet but we know there’s been a surge of visitors from India during the tournament. We’re also confident the awareness the event has generated will attribute to more International and especially Indian visitors booking trips to New Zealand even after the cup is over.

We also expect to see a greater number of meetings and incentive group arrivals as a result of Tourism New Zealand’s upweighted focus and investment in this segment,” said Dixon. Romit Theophilus, Director, Sales & Marketing, India GNTO, said, “We are looking forward to have a growth of 5 per cent in 2015 from the segment of MICE and leisure. Due to fall in euro rate, we definitely believe there will be an increase in traffic from India to Germany and 2015 will prove to be another fruitful year to us.” He added, “For the year 2015, we are optimistic, that it will definitely be another positive year for destination Germany. We are looking forward to have more and more queries on MICE, incentive trips for Corporate Companies. We expect an increase in series departure, FIT travels, and leisure trips for families especially from Northern and Western regions of India. Apart from this, we have witnessed growth in niche segments wherein visitors have interest in self-drives, wine regions, culinary events and festivals, industrial visits. We see a lot of potential in these segments and expect them to grow further in 2015. For 2015, we will carry the same amount of growth and hope to finish on a positive note.” Theophilus further said, Manoharan Periasamy, Director, Tourism Malaysia considers India a very significant market for Malaysia. “It’s the sixth largest source market for us. In 2014, we had 770108 Indians visiting Malaysia which is an 18.3 per cent increase compared to 2013. This year we are expecting close to 8,00,000 lakh tourists from India,” said Periasamy.

He added that Indians are travelling like never before. That’s good news for us. Besides, Malaysia is seen as a family destination with something for everyone in the family, be it adventure, sight seeing, shopping or amusement parks and beaches. Malaysia is also known as a shopping haven and with the sale period almost through the year with attractive offers, it has been successful in drawing tourists during the period. Speaking about tourist inflow from India to his country, Byungsun Lee, Director, Korea Tourism Organization, India said that majority of Indian tourists travel to Korea for business, however, “We have seen a change in this trend recently. We have succeeded in terms of establishing our new brand, ‘Imagine Your Korea’, as leisure as well as a MICE destination and we have been receiving a very positive response from the Indian market. We have launched many packages for India and we are confident that we will see a sharp rise in the number of Indian tourists visiting Korea. KTO are expecting a good rush from India this summer and are hoping for a positive growth.” Sharing his expectation, Ashit Taneja, Country Manager, Jordan Tourism Board, said that in the last year, Jordan witnessed almost the same numbers. “Considering the situation in the region and in neighboring countries, attaining the same numbers is an achievement. As the situation in the region is getting better and with Jordan being completely safe to travel, we anticipate a higher percentage of Indian tourists to visit Jordan this year,” said Taneja. He added that India is one of the most promising and upcoming source markets for Jordan. “It is an extremely important target market as there is a tremendous scope to increase the Indian arrivals into Jordan. Over the years, Indian visitors to Jordan have been increasing at a steady rate. We hope all the efforts we put in the last few years will aid us in achieving more visitors.” As regards Taiwan Tourism Bureau’s expectation, Noel Saxena, Country Manager, Taiwan Tourism Bureau, said, “Our expectation will always be positive when it comes to the outbound season in India. In 2015 we will be seeking fresh marketing initiatives in tandem with a collaborative spirit with a purpose. We are looking forward to potentially gaining advantage by utilizing our presence amongst travel trade consumers, media and also using modern strategies and technologies to reach out to the masses. Digital marketing, information and communication will become the cornerstone of Taiwan Tourism in particular and the tourism industry in general in the coming year.” Saxena further said, “Taiwan – ‘The Heart of Asia’- has been titled one of the Taiwan voted 'Best Value Destination' for 2015. In 2014, Taiwan achieved a record number of visitors of 9,910,204; out of which 30,000 Indians visited Taiwan.” Saxena said that they are always hopeful and sure that every season will be better than the previous one for Taiwan as a destination from India. Sunil Puri, Director – India, Representative Office of VISITFLANDERS and Brussels (Belgium) said that Flanders is a relatively new destination for the Indian travellers.

While most people are aware of the cities of Brussels and Antwerp that is located in Flanders, they are yet to discover the Art Cities of Bruges, Ghent, Mechelen and Leuven. “This awareness is coming along with travellers looking for niche experiences; for instance: music enthusiasts head to Ghent, romantic holidays have started including Bruges in their itineraries, beer lovers head to the Stella Artois brewery in Leuven,” added Puri. About his expectation from the season, Puri said, “We only expect the growth from 2014 to be escalated further in 2015. Also, the success of PK, the first Indian feature film to be shot in the city of Bruges in Flanders has given us great visibility and has generated a lot of interest among Indian FITs for Bruges and other Art Cities of Flanders.” Lee said that Korea Tourism has already established its brand ‘Imagine Your Korea’ in the Indian market and people has started posting queries for Korea tours. “I am very confident that all the efforts put in with help from our partners will lead to an increase in the number of tourists visiting Korea this summer.”

INDUSTRY EXPECTS BETTER SEASON Tourism Industry also hopes that the new Indian outbound season will be better than previous year. Karan Anand, Head - Relationships & Supplier Management, Cox & Kings said that the outbound season look very promising and will be better than previous year. Demand for European destinations have picked up significantly. New Zealand and Australia have also looked very promising for us. Anand said that for the first time traveller the Far East destinations of Malaysia, Singapore and Thailand continue to be promising so also destinations such as Macau and Hong Kong in North Asia. Mid haul destinations such as South Africa and Turkey is expected to grow better than last year. According to Vishal Sinha, COO, TUI India, the number of Indians travelling overseas is set to rise from nearly 15 million at present to 50 million by 2020. “The Indian outbound segment has recorded an average growth rate of 10 per cent for the past five to six years, and we looking at an upward growing curve for the travel & hospitality business in India,” said Sinha adding that India is one of the fastest growing markets for outbound tourism. One of the reasons is the rise of the middle class in emerging markets, which has changed world travel in a big way. He further said that destinations including Korea, Britain, USA, Ireland, Turkey, Portugal, Austria, Vietnam, Cambodia and Bhutan are gaining a spot in every traveler’s bucket list. Sinha said, “We are definitely hoping this year to be better than the previous year. Indians are changing their holiday patterns from few long holidays to many shorter ones. With a slew of long weekends since last year, short getaways form 50% of our total domestic bookings.

As compared to last year, we are already seeing a jump of 20% Indians who are planning to travel to foreign destinations this year. According to Sinha, TUI India has always emphasized on personalization as one of the main factors for their holiday offers and we are hoping for 20-25% growth in the total number of Indian tourists traveling abroad. “This year, the outbound season kick-started early for us, owing to the ICC World Cup, as customers booked holiday packages for Australia and New Zealand to coincide with the cricket matches,” said Neelu Singh, COO, Ezeego1.com , adding, “We expect this upcoming outbound season to be even better than last year, wherein we had registered a y-o-y growth of over 30 percent in the outbound travel segment alone.” According to Singh, Europe is turning out to be a favourite summer destination for Indian travellers owing to the 15-18 per cent decline in rate of exchange of the Euro since the last one year. There has been about 20 per cent growth in queries and conversions for Europe this summer as compared to the same period last year. The bookings for Ezeego1.com’s unique ‘Your Europe Your Way’ package have grown by around 18-20 percent this year, with a good spike during the Jan-March quarter

Nishant Kashikar Country Manager India & Gulf, Tourism Australia
“With A Strong And Stable Government And Positive Consumer Sentiments, Outbound Travel Out Of India Is Expected To Rise During 2015.”

Steven Dixon Regional Manager – South & Se Asia Tourism New Zealand
“This Year We Expect To Experience A Spike Over February And March Due To The ICC Cricket World Cup 2015, Which New Zealand Has Co-Hosted With Australia.”

Ashit Taneja Country Manager, Jordan Tourism Board
“As The Situation In The Region Is Getting Better And With Jordan Being Completely Safe To Travel, We Anticipate A Higher Percentage Of Indian Tourists To Visit Jordan This Year.”

Byungsun Lee Director, KTO, India
“We Have Succeeded In Terms Of Establishing Our New Brand “Imagine Your Korea” As A Leisure And A MICE Destination. We Have Been Receiving A Very Positive Response From The Indian Market.”

Vishal Sinha COO, TUI
“The Number Of Indians Travelling Overseas Is Set To Rise From Nearly 15 Million At Present To 50 Million By 2020. We Looking At An Upward Growing Curve For The Travel & Hospitality Business In India.”

Manmeet Ahluwalia Marketing Head, Expedia India
“Couples And Dinks Are Looking At Making A Five Day Long Weekends And Opting For SEA Destinations. 55% Of The Holidayers Are Opting For Offbeat Destinations As Compared To 30% Last Year.”% Last Year.”

Karan Anand
Head - Relationships & Supplier Management Cox & Kings Ltd

“The Outbound Season Look Very Promising. Demand For European Destinations Have Picked Up Significantly. New Zealand And Australia Have Also Looked Very Promising For Us.”

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