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Visit England to set up India operations

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Visit England will soon be setting up its India operations with offices in Mumbai first, followed by Delhi and Bengaluru. Speaking to Express TravelWorld, Alex Mawer, director of marketing, Visit England said, “Our focus in India will be business tourism and the MICE market. Many of our cities like Liverpool, Manchester and Leeds are known among Indians. They understand the English countryside due to a shared history. Countryside hotels are like hidden jewels and many of them have good conferencing facilities.” The NTO plans to target the pharmaceutical, insurance, banking, telecommunications and IT sectors.

Commenting on the India market, he opined, “Among the Asian nations, India is the most interesting and is ready for the next step. We want to concentrate on mature segments rather than just markets.” The tourist board’s advertising campaign ‘Holidays at Home are GREAT’ is the biggest ever domestic tourism campaign aimed at boosting tourism throughout the UK.

The campaign, led by Visit England, and supported by the home nation tourist boards of Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland will showcase key events including the Olympic Torch Relay. The £5 million campaign is aimed at inspiring UK residents to take a holiday at home this year and mitigate against a potential Olympic dip in the domestic market.

The campaign is part of Visit England’s £24 million three-year marketing strategy. The overall marketing programme seeks to generate an additional 5.3 million short break nights in England with an incremental spend of £480 million by 2015.

Mawer said, “The campaign has had about 60 per cent recall. Fifty per cent of citizens are likely to holiday at home this year.”

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