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T3 News Network

T3 News Network

Leading industry associations have come together to appeal to the government to strengthen the packaging waste collection and recycling ecosystem to attract regional and international tourists to Indian tourist destinations. The strengthening of waste collection system and educating common citizens about the importance of responsible disposal of various types of plastics will ensure less waste littered at the tourist hotspots and other Indian cities.

A month ago, the Indian government released the Swaccha Survekshan (Cleanliness Survey), in which many tourist hotspots like Amritsar, Jaipur, Delhi, Mumbai, Srinagar, Varanasi Shillong, etc. received a poor rating. Also, almost half of the world’s 50 most polluted cities are in India. It projects a negative image of India/Indian destinations globally and adversely impacts tourism. The current pandemic is an opportunity to rethink the roadmap to build a clean, safe, and environment-friendly tourism ecosystem.

Pronab Sarkar, President - Indian Association of Tour Operators - National Apex Body of Tour Operators said, “Tourism sector is the key for the revival of Indian economy and cleanliness will play a pivotal role in the post-COVID era to attract tourists. Scarred and battered tourists will seek destinations that are safe, hygienic, and clean. Pollution not only affect the environment but also the culture, society, and economy adversely. Pollution with respect to tourism encompasses air emissions, noise, solid waste and littering, releases of sewage, and chemicals, even architectural/visual pollution. Most of these are easily avoidable. Better planning in terms of plastic waste disposal, collection, and recycling mechanism will usher in good health and well-being, clean water and sanitation, sustainable cities and communities, and responsible consumption and production. These will send positive signals globally that shall augur well for Indian tourism.”

Subhash Goyal, Hony. Secretary- Federation of Associations in Indian Tourism & Hospitality (FAITH), “Destinations which are not only hygienically safe but also visibly clean will be preferred by the tourists.  The current pandemic has made us realize that the health of our planet is the priority, collective efforts not only by the government and municipalities but by all individuals, social, voluntary organizations, and resident welfare associations have to be made across our country to curtail littering and improve waste collection and recycling efforts. Tourists look for a surrounding which is pleasing to the eye. There should be regular cleanliness and health audits to ensure that the infrastructure and environment are pristine. If we collectively contribute towards this objective, then we could usher towards a new era of Incredible India!”

“Cleanliness is the key to stimulate tourism industry in India. The habit of littering, ineffective waste management, and the pandemic has led to widespread pollution. Owing to the current pandemic, plastic waste has increased drastically, due to the surge in the usage of plastic items. But banning plastic is not a solution since COVID-19 has taught us that plastic is an essential part of our life, be it masks, PPE kits, or sanitizer bottles. The need of the hour is to educate masses about its correct disposal and recycling, especially the most recycled types of plastics, so the negative effects can be curtailed and our tourist hotspots i.e. beaches, hill stations, pilgrimage can maintain their sheen.” Nilesh Shah- President - Travel and Tourism Association of Goa.

Tourism Corporation Gujarat Limited (TCGL) in association with Brand Aid are all set to conduct the first of its kind virtual awards. The first edition of Gujarat Travel and Tourism Excellence Award 2020 is all set to be held on 25th September 2020. The event will be graced by Gujarat Chief Minister Vijay Rupani; Minister of Tourism & Fisheries Jawahar Chavda and Minister of State for Tourism, Gujarat Vasan Bhai Ahir. The event is conceptualised and executed by Brand Aid.

This would be the very first time in tourism industry of India, a virtual Tourism award ceremony is organized. The whole idea is to felicitate achievers for their efforts to boost tourism sector of Gujarat. The award ceremony will have 13 different categories ranging from best tour operator, best Gujarati cuisine restaurant to a special jury award and many more.

Commenting on the same, Commissioner of Tourism and Managing Director of Tourism Corporation of Gujarat Jenu Devan says, “Gujarat has always promoted uniqueness, and the virtual Gujarat Tourism Excellence Award Ceremony, will also be the first of its kind. I am especially pleased that by hosting such an event, we are sending a strong message that no matter what the circumstances, we can always adapt and continue to find new ways to flourish. Especially, the State's Tourism Industry is working round-the-clock to give every visitor a warmer and safer experience of Gujarat. I thank Hon'ble CM Shri Vijay Rupani and other Honoured Guests for gracing the ceremony with their presence and supporting TCGL's endeavours.”

Commenting on the same, Hiten Shah, the director of ‘Brand Aid’ which also conceptualised the award function said, “A lot of thought has been put into the award show. It has been in planning stage for over 3 months and the ranking system has also been detailed and done by the best in the industry. This award function will boost confidence of the tourism sector in the state and also be a trend setter for other states to follow. This will also help boost confidence of the tourism sector in the state and will instil confidence of governments backing in helping to stabilise the situation which has taken a big hit due to Covid 19.”

The Leela

The Leela Palaces, Hotels and Resorts has appointed Anupriya Ghosh as Senior Director Revenue Strategy. Anupriya brings with her over a decade of focused Revenue Management Strategy experience. Prior joining to The Leela, she has worked with brands including Taj Hotels, Starwood Hotels and Marriott International in India.

In her new role, Anupriya will be responsible for building and driving the overall Revenue Management Strategy for the brand. She will work closely with all hotel Revenue Managers and guide and assist them in driving the Corporate Revenue Strategy to optimize the company’s channel delivery and revenue yield as it navigates the challenges that the immediate future brings.

VFS Global has announced changes in their South Asia operations leadership team with the appointment of Pranav Sinha as Head - South Asia, VFS Global. In this role, Pranav will now be responsible for overall business operations in South Asia with an emphasis on ensuring the highest customer service standards as well as managing client relationships. He reports to Vinay Malhotra, Regional Group COO, and will be based in New Delhi, India.

Prior to this, Pranav oversaw the company’s operations in West and South India, Maldives and Sri Lanka since 2016.

Sharad Gowani will move on to take over Pranav’s former role and report to him as Regional Head for West & South India, Maldives and Sri Lanka. He has been part of Projects as Deputy Head. Sharad has been with VFS Global for the last 9 years, having managed the company’s operations in Africa and South Asia in the past, besides overseeing the rollout of various projects globally.

The International Ecotourism Society (TIES) has appointed Pankaj Nagpal, MD, Travstarz Global Group as the Chapter Head for North India. He is the first Chapter Head to be appointed in India by TIES.

TIES is a non-profit organization present in 190 countries with over 15,000 active members across the globe who follow the guidelines of sustainability and ecological preservation at global standards.

Pride Sun Village Resort and Spa, Goa reopens its door to welcome back its guests into a safe and hygienic environment under the ‘Pride Safety Assurance’ initiative. This assurance covers hygiene guidelines, booking policies as well as precautions to be taken by guests and staff to ensure safety and flexibility.

The Covid-19 Pandemic has raised exceptional demands on the cleanliness and hygiene standards of the industry. And it can only be attained with the implementation of stringent protocols for the current circumstances. As a part of the ‘New Normal’, the resort has introduced many safety measures like on arrival, thermal screening will be conducted at the entrance and luggage will be sanitised, guests will be greeted with hygiene kit carrying sanitiser, face mask & gloves and immunity boosters will be given as the welcome drink to them.

With travellers being extremely thoughtful about their accommodation, the need for safety of staffs and guests is of utmost priority. To attain the highest level of safety and hygiene standards the resort makes sure that all the key touch-points area in its premises are sanitized in every half an hour. Medical assistance & doctors are available on call 24*7 for emergency and dedicated rooms are also available for guests who have been advised quarantine. The guests can also go for a safe drive, as the resort cars are regularly sanitized.

Atul Upadhyay, Vice President Operations, Pride Hotels, said, “The impact of COVID 19 is unprecedented but we’re grateful to our loyal guests who have bestowed us with their trust during this pandemic. We want them to feel safe when they walk through the doors of our resort at all times. In order to make it possible we need to be transparent with them on the further steps we’ve taken in the areas of cleanliness, hygiene and social distancing. It’s also important for us to make our staff feel safe while working. We’ve launched various training programs for them to be well equipped while serving the guests. We believe in creating a premium hospitality experience for our guest and look forward to delivering a safe, secure and comfortable experience to them.”

Welcoming them to a new era of travel with the ‘new normal’ stay experience the property will give utmost priority to their health, safety and security. The resort is a perfect place to set up a workstation for business travellers and a delight for nature lovers. From social gatherings and high-end product launch parties to corporate meet-ups, the Pride Sun Village Resort & Spa houses a palatial banqueting venue for hosting a variety of occasions and celebrations.

Atout France India continued with its annual tradition of organising its flagship B2B showcase in September with two virtual B2B workshops that took place on September 21 -22, 2020. While the 21st September workshop was exclusively dedicated to Paris and its Region, the workshop of the following day, “Explore France” put the spotlight on France’s diverse destinations. More than 500 pre-scheduled interactions took place between the Indian buyers and the French suppliers over these two days.

The Paris Region Workshop allowed for focused exchanges on tourism opportunities in the City of Lights and its surrounds with a formidable delegation representing luxury hotels, touristic attractions, logistic vendors and nightlife options. The time was opportune for Parisian stakeholders to showcase the charter “Caring Attitude” implemented by the Paris Convention and Visitors Bureau which is essentially a series of safety and health measures implemented by tourism professionals to ensure the complete security of its overseas visitors in Paris. The Paris Regional Tourism Board led the initiative alongside Atout France and reiterated the message of commitment to the cause of tourism in the No 1 destination worldwide.

France’s diverse destinations were well represented at the Explore France Workshop with an impressive presence from the Alps. This included the Regional Tourism Board of Auvergne Rhône-Alpes, ski resorts such as Courchevel, Megève, Méribel, Val d’Isère, Saint-Gervais Mont Blanc, the ski school ESF 1850 Courchevel, luxury accommodation such as le K2 Collections (Courchevel) and the ski-lift company-the Mont-Blanc Natural Resort. Complementing this formidable Alpine presence were delegates from destinations such as Nice, Occitanie Sud de France, Lourdes, Northern France and Lisieux-Authentic Normandy. France’s overseas destinations were represented by Reunion Island and for the first time, the delegation included a telecommunications provider in the form of Bouygues Telecom. 

Adding their signature style to the Explore France workshop, Atout France organised a virtual photo-booth for all participants and also an online interactive baking session with renowned Chef Pooja Dhingra for the Indian buyers. Combining the vintage and the contemporary, digitally enhanced postcards of destinations/services represented at the workshop made for many a virtual journey to France.

Sheetal Munshaw, Director, Atout France India, said “We are very pleased with the support received by both our French and Indian stakeholders. For us, it was always essential to keep the connection between our two countries from a tourism standpoint alive and active. Though we would have much liked our on-ground workshop format with actual interactions and exchanges, we are happy that these digital versions helped reinforce links between our buyers and suppliers.”

Kerala Tourism wrapped itself in glory as its internationally-acclaimed ‘Human by Nature’ campaign today bagged the prestigious PATA Grand Award 2020 for Marketing, giving a huge stimulus to tourism industry in the state that is grappling with the adverse aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Kerala Tourism has bagged one of the three PATA Grand Awards, which were announced live during a virtual presentation ceremony in Beijing.

The distant event was attended by Tourism Minister Kadakampally Surendran, Tourism Secretary Rani George, Tourism Director P. Bala Kiran, PATA Chief Executive Officer Mario Hardy and Macao Government Tourism Office (MGT) Director Maria Helena de Senna Fernandes.

It was for the first time that this year’s PATA Gold Awards, supported and sponsored by the Macao Government Tourism Office (MGTO), were announced virtual since its inception in 1995. This year’s awards recognised the achievements of three Grand title winners and 21 Gold Awards.

Expressing happiness over winning the top award, Surendran said ‘Human by Nature’ was a brilliant marketing strategy to revive tourism that had suffered a severe knocking in the wake of the 2018 floods and the outbreak of the Nipah virus.   

The idea of a new campaign showcasing the culture and daily life of the people of Kerala put forth by Kerala Tourism was conceptualized and scripted by Stark Communications.

The campaign which was carried out in national and international channels, newspapers,  magazines, portals and airport displays in key cities helped in achieving Kerala’s record growth rate of 17.2 per cent in 2019, the highest growth rate in tourism arrivals in 24 years.

“I believe the latest award would provide a huge stimulus to the state’s ongoing efforts to rev up our tourism sector through innovative means as it is the mainstay of Kerala’s economy and contributes around 10 per cent of the state’s GDP. In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, we have to reboot the travel sector with focus on domestic tourism and safety at every point of destination,” the minister noted. 

 “The PATA Grand Award is a huge affirmation of the creative brilliance of our marketing campaigns and it shows that the Human by Nature campaign has struck the right note with global travelers,'' George said and added that right now we are in the process of supporting the tourism sector with revival package schemes. “Our efforts are also geared towards putting in place SOPs for the tourism stakeholders and be a responsible tourism destination, thereby giving the tourists confidence to visit the State,” she added.

Bala Kiran said, “We are trying to rejuvenate our tourism sector by innovative business models that would create reassurance for travellers and ensure a responsible and sustainable tourism industry. We need to win the trust of travellers. That is going to be the cardinal driving force for tourism industry in the state.” 


The PATA Gold Awards 2020 attracted 121 entries from 62 organisations and individuals worldwide. The winners were selected by an independent judging committee of 16 personalities from various destinations.

OYO crossed the 50 million app downloads mark yesterday, with India leading with the most downloads followed by Indonesia, Malaysia, the USA, and Brazil. OYO claims that the company witnessed 32 app installs per minute in 2020. The app data reveals that Delhi ranked as the city with the most active consumer base in India. Across India, the top five cities with the most downloads include New Delhi, Pune, Kolkata, Lucknow and Hyderabad.

The OYO app is available in 9 languages across the world, including English, Hindi, Portuguese, Spanish, Bahasa, Arabic, Japanese, and Vietnamese.

Commenting on the milestone, Rohit Kapoor, CEO, India & South Asia, OYO believes that the pandemic has transformed the company for the better. “There couldn’t have been a better time for us to have hit the 50 million app downloads mark this year. Since Unlock 3.0, OYO has managed to reach 30% of the pre-COVID occupancy levels with bookings led by millennials and small and mid-sized businesses across 20+ states and UTs. This is a positive sign showcasing consumer intent to travel again. It is also a testament to OYO’s resilience, ability to adapt, and most importantly, our strengthening consumer confidence,” Kapoor said.

SITA is partnering with start-up Safety Line to help pilots and airlines limit carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions and operational costs by reducing fuel consumption of aircraft at key flight stages. Safety Line, a young French company that specializes in predictive big data solutions for airlines and airports, has made it its mission to help save aircraft fuel and reduce CO2 emissions during all these flight phases with a software suite called OptiFlight. The focus currently lies on the climb-out – the most fuel-consuming phase of a flight – and the cruise phase.

Safety Line’s software solutions for the cruise phase, OptiSpeed, OptiDirect and OptiLevel, collectively called OptiCruise, have been integrated in SITA’s widely used eWAS Pilot mobile application, which is part of SITA FOR AIRCRAFT’s ‘Digital Day of Operations’ portfolio. eWAS Pilot, used by 50,000 pilots of commercial airlines, business jets and cargo airlines, provides accurate 4D weather forecasts and real-time updates from various sources to warn about weather hazards such as thunderstorms, lightning, clear air turbulence, strong winds, icing and even volcanic ash.

Safety Line’s OptiCruise allows pilots and airlines to achieve significant fuel savings and carbon emission reductions. OptiSpeed shows pilots the fuel and time impact of speed variations with the objective of on-time arrival at the best fuel/time ratio while OptiDirect recommends shortcuts based on historical flight data and indicates possible fuel and time savings. OptiLevel advises pilots on the best initial flight level and cruise level changes, taking tailwinds and headwinds into account.

As part of the new partnership and through the ‘Digital Day of Operations’ portfolio, SITA now also offers Safety Line’s OptiClimb software. OptiClimb uses tail-specific machine learning performance models in combination with 4D weather forecasts, to recommend customized speed changes at different altitudes for each climb. The software predicts fuel burn in tens of thousands of possible flight scenarios and then issues recommended climb speeds to pilots ahead of each flight.

Safety Line data shows that climb fuel savings of 5-6% are possible for each flight without affecting passenger safety or comfort. On a yearly basis, this could reduce CO2 emissions by several thousands of tons and operational costs by several million dollars, depending on the size of the airline fleet. Safety Line estimates that 5.6 million tons of CO2 could be avoided if all airlines in the world were to use OptiClimb.

Sébastien Fabre, CEO for SITA FOR AIRCRAFT said: “We at SITA continue to seek smarter ways to use existing and new technologies and collaborate with partners in the air transport industry with the goal of making airline operations more efficient and environmentally friendly. The partnership with Safety Line is another important step for us that will enable airlines to embrace the digital shift that is needed to reinvent the operation of aircraft. It is about adopting more sustainable and cost-effective practices.”

Sustainability and a sharp focus on cost-efficiency, along with safety and security will remain the top priorities for airlines in the COVID-19 era.

Pierre Jouniaux, Founder and CEO of Safety Line said: “We are delighted to partner with SITA, because pilots and airlines can now easily access our smart technology through SITA FOR AIRCRAFT’s ‘Digital Day of Operations’ portfolio and work towards more sustainable aviation. We look forward to delivering further innovation through this collaboration to save fuel and improve cost-efficiency at every stage of flight.”



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