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Czech Tourism marks market presence in India through VFS Global

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Czech Tourism Board, as part of its efforts to boost visibility in the India market, has appointed VFS Global as its country representative. Milan Hovorka, ambassador, Embassy of the Czech Republic in New Delhi, while inaugurating Czech Tourism’s office in Mumbai said, “We wanted to open our office in India and our collaboration with VFS Global has made it possible. VFS Global will represent Czech Tourism’s India office. We want to promote bilateral trade, travel and tourism. Tourism is an important vehicle for us, which generates synergies in many areas.”

During the last two years, Czech Republic and VFS Global have opened 16 visa application centres across India, including Tier II cities. In the last five years, the volume of Indian tourist arrivals to Czech Republic has shown three-fold growth. The destination recorded 66,500 Indian tourist arrivals in 2016. Whereas, the average stay of Indian tourists – currently 3.5 days –  has also been growing at a similar pace. In the first half of 2017, there has been a growth of 40 per cent in Indian tourist footfall.

Monica Palatkova, managing director, Czech Tourism Board said, “Indian travel partners are interested in our destination, and they are curious about new products. We recently completed our road show across Delhi, Bengaluru and Mumbai. We plan to expand our activities in India. Our goal is to achieve 100,000 Indian tourist arrivals by 2019. Physical presence in the market is crucial to achieve this goal, hence our partnership with VFS Global is significant.”

By 2021, the number of Indians travelling to Central and Eastern Europe is expected to increase by 60 per cent, and Czech Tourism is planning to leverage upon this.

“Online training programmes is one of the tools we would like to use in the future, alongside our ongoing social media efforts. We also hope for direct connectivity in the future. MICE is a promising market, alongside young travellers, couples, families and senior citizens,” added Palatkova.

The toursim board is also planning to introduce new locations in the India market in 2018. Next year, Czech Tourism will organise trade activities in Ahmedabad and Kolkata, whereas in 2019, it will add Chennai and Hyderabad. Czech Republic will also mark 100 years of its independence in 2018.