Thursday, October 30, 2014

TUI India to focus more on tier-II, III cities.

Tour operator TUI India sees greater business opportunity in tier-2 and tier-3 cities in the country. The company plans to increase its presence from current six to 15 stores by the end of next year, informed a top company official here.
Speaking at the launch of its Ahmedabad store, Vishal Sinha, Chief Operating Officer, TUI India said, “Gujarat is currently one of the fastest developing states of our country and we have seen a rise in the number of Gujaratis travelling abroad for their holidays. Research has shown that over 30 per cent of Indian tourists are Gujaratis.”
The company, an Indian arm of international leisure travel group, TUI Travel PLC will also focus on local tourism. “About 30 per cent of our business comes from domestic travel. And with states focusing more on developing their local tourism spots, we see this business to grow more,” Sinha told BusinessLine. He mentioned that India’s outbound tourism is expected to witness a jump in summers with tourists’ traffic likely to increase by about 15 to 20 per cent.
Encouraged by Gujarat government’s travel promotion under Khusbu Gujarat ki, several tourist spots are set to emerge as short-trip holiday destinations. “We are developing packages for domestic travel of Rann of Kutch and blackbuck sanctuary for travel packages.” Within India TUI offers tour packages in Kashmir, Rajasthan and Kerala besides Gujarat.
Interestingly, a study conducted by trade body, Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry (Assocham) recently revealed that tourist spots in Gujarat and Rajasthan like Ambaji temple, Gir forest, Kutch, Udaipur and Mount Abu besides Daman & Diu, Dadra & Nagar Haveli are being preferred as a getaway destinations. Working couples from cities are increasingly flocking to such destinations for a quick holiday.
TUI, which started Indian operations in 2006 is also eyeing travellers from India rushing for abroad trip. Quoting an industry report, Sinha mentioned that India has emerged as the world's fastest-growing outbound market and in absolute numbers it is second only to China. “The number of Indians travelling overseas is set to rise from around 15 million today to 50 million by 2020. It states that 67 per cent of outbound travellers are from Western India, mainly Gujarat and Maharashtra,” he said.
Correction: The percentage share of TUI India's business from domestic travel has been changed from 70 per cent to 30 per cent
(This article was published on October 10, 2014)

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