The ongoing 35th Annual Convention of the Indian Association of Tour Operators (IATO) began on September 12 and will run through September 15,2019. The event is being held in Kolkata, West Bengal, India.
eTN Chatroom for Readers (join us)
Over 1,000 delegates have generated much interest and food for thought, which hopefully will translate into action that will benefit the travel and tourism industry sooner than later.
Industry leaders were led by Pronab Sarkar, Chairman of the convention, along with senior tourism officials who spoke of the need to interact more so that the challenges facing tourism can be met.
Tourism officers sought input from industry participants regarding what strategy to follow to promote a jump in arrivals to 20 million from 10 million.
Travel agents want steps to be taken to make this possible and also want to see hoteliers boost capacity of rooms. Hotel leaders spoke of the need to fill rooms in a lean period, while many felt that there was no lean period and all 12 months must be promoted.
Emerging areas like cruise tourism got much attention from all stakeholders with the good news that more ships are being added and port facilities are being increased. It was also felt that with its vast coastline, India can cater to the growing cruise travel sector in the seas, rivers, and coastal areas.
It was agreed by both hotel representatives and travel agents that there needs to be one voice and strategy focused on guiding the travel and tourism industry forward.
The intent of these annual conventions is to showcase new and emerging destinations to its members and to bring together hundreds of senior level business travel experts from all over India to learn, share, and network over business sessions related to the latest trends and developments in the travel and tourism sector. The association held its first convention in 1983.