The trend of hosting association conventions on foreign soil seems to be rather well established. It proves to be a perfect plan and a fruitful proposition for international tourism boards to meet their objective by showcasing their destination to a catchment crowd, in turn hoping to increase their inbound numbers from India. November end, early December will witness two associations, ETAA and OTOAI, host their conventions on international soil, in Dubai and Philippines respectively. The plan seems to be rather clear – it is all about showcasing a destination in all its finery to its members, who in turn will work as brand ambassadors and business partners to promote and sell the region.
Around the same time, CII’s tourism committee is also going all out to host an international tourism fest with an objective to developing bilateral relationship between domestic stakeholders and foreign counterparts, and attract investments in the tourism and hospitality sector. From international food festivals to golf, from chef events to dance festivals, this event looks promising, at least on paper. Interestingly, it is not the established domestic states that are playing host to the event but a new kid on the block, namely Chandigarh and its surrounding areas, which will be introduced to the delegates. IATO as an association too has been instrumental in opening up new areas and cities of India for its delegates by hosting its annual conventions across potential tourism zones in the country.
Further, the months of November and December seem to be all about meetings and greetings for the travel fraternity as WTM 2013 also opens doors early November. Recession, downturn and challenges do affect tourism and participation, but shows such as WTM and ITB bring back the enthusiasm and also help put business into perspective. The very magnitude of the shows and networking opportunities that they provide help stakeholders learn and unlearn simultaneously. New businesses and ideas spring up while established formulas could be rewritten. Similarly, our cover story in this issue focuses on the still unexplored time share business. Our story articulately highlights the segment’s second coming. In the last few years the sector has witnessed a growth of 50 per cent and has generated 1.7 millions jobs in the country. The future growth of the industry will be marked by setting up of resorts in undiscovered locations with great tourism potential that will create regional job opportunities and positively impact the local economy.