Chennai, November 2018: Israel Ministry of Tourism (IMOT) conducted aroadshow in Chennaion 16th November to enhance commercial ties with the Indian travel trade fraternity. In an effort to retain the growth momentum of Indian arrivals to Israel, the team interacted with over 100key travel and tour operators, MICE providers, up-market leisure operators and media personnel. The event started off with a presentation leading to an interactive session with the IMOT team. The roadshow included interactive B2B sessions, education programmes and workshops to aid trade members in planning itineraries and responding to customer queries.The Israeli delegation was led by Hassan Madah, Director – Israel Ministry of Tourism, India & Philippines along with Judah Samuel, Director – Marketing, Israel Ministry of Tourism, India and included representative partners from the tourism industry of Israel.
Commenting on the roadshow, Mr. Hassan Madah, Director, Israel Ministry of Tourism – India & Philippines said, “Tourism is on the rise in Israel and inbound arrivals from India has appreciably increased in the last few years. There has been a growth of 58% with 48,800 Indian arrivals to the country from January to September 2018 vis-à-vis 30,800 Indian visitors during the same period in 2016. Chennai is an important market for us with an increased demand for leisure travel and its continued growth in pilgrimage tourism to Israel”.
In light of the growing demand for Israel as a tourist destination, the country recently witnessed initiatives by Air India and El Al that will further boost outbound travel from India. Air India announced an increase in its New Delhi-Tel Aviv direct flight frequency to five times a week starting 26th November 2018 while Israeli carrier El Al has introduced Boeing 777-200ER aircraft on its Mumbai-Tel Aviv route. In Addition to this, Arkia has also expressed interest to begin operations from South India.
Mr Madah further added, “We are positive about the Indian outbound growth to Israel with Arkia entering the market. Additionally, we have facilitated several initiatives to ease the visa procedure for Indian citizens. This includes Fast Track visa processing and relaxation of documentation for persons who have travelled to any of theSchengen countries, US, Canada, Australia or Israel. A further reduction in visa fee to INR 1,100 will also witness more people choosing Israel as a holiday destination boosting inbound numbers from India”.
Israel has quickly become Middle-East’s newest business tourism destination, gaining popularity with the Indian corporate segment. A number of world class hotels, state-of-the-art convention centres, amazing beaches, thriving nightlife, international cuisine and modern infrastructure including free Wi-Fi across cities like Tel Aviv and Jerusalem are features that lure the business traveller to the start-up nation. The Dead Sea and Eilat are great MICE add-ons especially with a new international airport expected to open in Eilat next year. Israel is a compact country and most locations are accessible within a few hours of driving.