Kerala Tourism Industry Woos Middle East Clientele

Dubai: On April 24, 2017 at 12 noon His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, inaugurated Arabian Travel Market (ATM), the 24th edition of the Middle East’s leading travel and tourism event.

HH Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum was joined by dignitaries, including HH Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai; HH Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, President of the Dubai Civil Aviation Authority, Chairman and CEO of the Emirates Group; and His Excellency Helal Saeed Al Marri, Director General of Dubai’s Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing (DTCM).

ATM 2017 welcomed over 2,600 confirmed exhibitors across 12 halls at Dubai World Trade Centre, making it the largest ATM in history – with 100 exhibiting for the first time – representing more than 150 countries, across 65 national pavilions.

The India Pavilion at ATM 2017 of which Kerala Tourism formed a part of, was a formidable presence in Hall 3. The Kerala trade delegation included Hotel Apollo Dimora Thiruvananthapuram, Catalyst Holidays, Thiruvananthapuram, Gateway Malabar Holidays, Kochi, The Great India Tour Company (GITC), Thiruvananthapuram, Intersight Tours and Travels, Kochi, Parakkat Nature Resorts, Munnar, Raviz Hotels and Resorts, KSA Tours and Travels, Kochi and Kumarakom Lake Resort, Kumarakom. Spiceland Holidays, Fragrant Nature Resorts and GTM Destination Management Company were the standalone stalls set up by Kerala players.

The Incredible India pavilion was formally opened by Vipul, Consul-General of India in Dubai, in the presence of Gyan Bhushan, Economic Advisor, Government of India Ministry of Tourism (MoT); Deepa Jain, Head of Chancery & Consul (Culture & Protocol), Consulate General of India, Dubai; I R V Rao, Assistant Director, Government of India Tourist Office (GOITO), Dubai and trade partners.

“Keeping up with current travel trends, ATM 2017 focussed on three key areas – experiential, halal and luxury travel, and how the tourism business was responding to the demands of the digital world,’’ said Simon Press, senior exhibition director. At the Kerala Tourism Zone of the Incredible India pavillion, Destination Kerala’s ATM 2017 special issue focussing on Medical Value Travel (MVT) was unveiled by Consul General Vipul in the presence of Gyan Bhushan, cover personality E M Najeeb, Chairman, ATE Group and Executive Director, KIMS Healthcare Group; Abraham George, CMD, Intersight Tours & Travels and President, Kerala Travel Mart; Zaheer Ellias Najeeb, Director, ATE India and Jose Kunnappally, Chief Editor, Destination Kerala.