PATA Travel Mart underway in Malaysia (Photo Feature)

The 41st edition of the Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA) Travel Mart-2018 kicked off in Langkawi, Malaysia from Thursday. Organized by the Tourism Ministry of Malaysia and the PATA Head Office, over 1,000 representatives from 70 countries are participating in the mega event of the tourism industry of Asia-Pacific. Altogether 252 buyers and 200 sellers […]

The 41st edition of the Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA) Travel Mart-2018 kicked off in Langkawi, Malaysia from Thursday.
Organized by the Tourism Ministry of Malaysia and the PATA Head Office, over 1,000 representatives from 70 countries are participating in the mega event of the tourism industry of Asia-Pacific.

Altogether 252 buyers and 200 sellers are participating in the event, according to Sudhan Suebdi, senior officer of Nepal TOurism Board, who is a part of Nepali travel delegation.

Altogether 10 travel companies from Nepal are participating in the event. Nepal’s participation in the event is jointly coordinated by NTB, Nepal Airlines Corporation, and PATA Nepal Chapter.

NTB is also the sponsor of Buyers’ Lounge at the PATA Travel Mart.

The event will conclude on September 14.

All photos: Sudhan Subedi/NTB

A Nepali exhibitor deals with buyers.

Representatives of a Nepali exhibitor in talks with a buyer.

Journalists at a media briefing organized by the Nepali travel delegation.

Delegates take a coffee break at the Buyers’ Lounge of PATA Travel Mart. The lounge is sponsored by Nepal Tourism Board.

Sunil Sharma, senior manager of Nepal Tourism Board (NTB), informing a buyer about Nepal’s tourism products and services.

 

 

 

Salam Air begins scheduled flights to Kathmandu

Salam Air, a budget carrier from the Sultanate of Oman, started scheduled flights on Muscat-Kathmandu-Muscat from Tuesday.

Salam Air

File photo of Airbus A320 aircraft operated by Salam Air.

Salam Air, a budget carrier from the Sultanate of Oman, started scheduled flights on Muscat-Kathmandu-Muscat from Tuesday.

The maiden flight of the carrier landed at the Tribhuvan International Airport in Kathmandu at 8 am on Tuesday. The airline will conduct four flights a week on the sector.

The airline has appointed IME Group as its General Sales Agent (GSA) in Nepal.

Speaking at a press meet organized in Kathmandu, Chairman of IME Group Chandra Prasad Dhakal said that he was hopeful that the beginning of Salam Air flights to Nepal will support the Visit Nepal Year 2020 campign.

Dhakal also added that the airline will also bring foreign tourists to Kathmandu.

Established in 2016, the airline operated its first commercial flight in January, 2017. Along with Kathmandu, it operates flights to Jeddah of Saudai Arabia, Khartoum of Sudan, Karachi, Multan and Sialkot of Pakistan, Dubai of UAE, Doha of Qatar, Tbilisi of Georgia, Baku of Azerbaijan, and Dhaka of Bangladesh from its hub in Muscat. It operates a fleet of Airbus 320 aircraft configured to carry 174 passengers.

Similarly, Salam Air CEO Captain Mohamad Ahmed said he was hopeful that the flight will contribute to Nepal’s economy.

Salam Air is the second Omani carrier, linking Kathmandu with Muscat.

 

Nepal promoted in Sichuan

Nepal received unprecedented religious and tourism mileage as the Birthplace of Lord Buddha at the 5th Sichuan International Travel Expo (SCITE) 18 held in Leshan, China from September 6 to 9, Nepal Tourism Board (NTB) said in a statement.

Nepal received unprecedented religious and tourism mileage as the Birthplace of Lord Buddha at the 5th Sichuan International Travel Expo (SCITE) 18 held in Leshan, China from September 6 to 9, Nepal Tourism Board (NTB) said in a statement.

Nepal was the Country of Honor at this year’s edition of Sichuan International Travel Expo.

Minister for Culture, Tourism and Civil Aviation, Rabindra Prasad Adhikari, led the Nepali delegation in the expo. The delegation comprised of Members of Parliament, Mayors of Lumbini, Tansen and Ramgram municipalities, Nepal Tourism Board, Lumbini Development Trust and tourism entrepreneurs.

Minister Adhikari addressed the opening ceremony of the expo and visited the Nepal Pavilion as well as held several high-level meetings with the Governor of Sichuan, the Mayor of Leshan, Heads of the famous Dado Zen temple and Leshan Buddha temple to discuss mutual cooperation and promotion of tourism in the very potential China market, NTB said in the statement.

The highlight of the visit was the signing of MOU between Leshan, the home of the biggest Buddha statue in the world and Lumbini, Tansen and Ramgram for promotion of Buddhist tourism.

Meanwhile, Minister Adhikari also handed over holy soil from Lumbini to the Leshan Buddha Museum.

Nepal Week was also organized on the sidelines of the expo. Nepal’s ambassador to China Leela Mani Paudyal inaugurated the event last week. The event featured exhibition and sale of Nepali handicrafts and showcased Nepal’s culinary delights. Photo exhibition, live pottery and cultural dances were the other attractions of the event.

Minister Adhikari and the Mayor of Leshan have expressed great commitment in strengthening the ties between Leshan and Lumbini and this will definitely go a long way in promoting Nepal’s tourism in China. Nepal Association of Tour and Travel Agents (NATTA) coordinated participation of travel agents in the B2B session of the expo.

According to NTB, the Nepali delegation used the event to promote Visit Nepal Year 2020 campaign.

 

 

 

Tourist arrivals up 74 percent in July

Tourist arrivals to Nepal posted a remarkable growth of 73.5 percent year-on-year to 73,285 visitors in July. According to data released by Nepal Tourism Board (NTB), the healthy growth in the seventh month of 2018 took growth in overall tourist arrivals in the seven-month period to 18 percent. Nepal welcomed 593,299 foreign tourists between January […]

File Photo

Tourist arrivals to Nepal posted a remarkable growth of 73.5 percent year-on-year to 73,285 visitors in July.

According to data released by Nepal Tourism Board (NTB), the healthy growth in the seventh month of 2018 took growth in overall tourist arrivals in the seven-month period to 18 percent. Nepal welcomed 593,299 foreign tourists between January and July, 2018.

The increased tourist footfalls in July were contributed by a strong growth of 80.4 percent year-on-year from India – the largest tourist generating market for the country. Similarly, overall arrivals from SAARC countries registered a growth of 66.1 percent in July compared to the same month of last year, despite a 9 percent drop in arrivals from Bangladesh.

Likewise, arrivals from China recorded an exponential growth of 125.4 percent compared to figures of the same month last year. Total arrivals from Asia (other than SAARC region) were also up 86.2 percent, contributed by healthy growth in arrivals from Japan (36 percent) and South Korea (21.9 percent).

Arrivals from Europe also increase by a whopping 54.1 percent in July helped by strong growth from the UK (68.9 percent), Germany (53.9 percent) and Spain (41.2 percent). However, arrivals from Austria were down 72.6 percent.

Australia and New Zealand also logged tremendous growths of 113.9 percent and 75.2 percent, respectively. Arrivals from the US and Canada were also up 79.6 percent and 73.3 percent year-on-year in July.

Commenting on the healthy rise in tourist arrivals, Deepak Raj Joshi, CEO of NTB, said in addition to the neighboring markets, the Asia Pacific region has seen rapid economic development and dynamic changes in recent time. “The positive growth in visitor arrivals from all major markets are highly encouraging and undoubtedly present significant opportunities to travel trade sector and to the entire country,” he said, adding: “The government’s priority in infrastructure development and announcement of Visit Nepal Year 2020 (VNY 2020) is well-received by the national as well as international travel trade.”

The government has decided to celebrate the year 2020 as ‘Visit Nepal Year 2020’ to bring more foreign tourists to the country.

Senior entrepreneur Tek Chandra Pokharel passes away

Senior tourism entrepreneur Tek Chandra Pokharel passed away in Kathmandu this morning.

Late Tek Chandra Pokharel

Senior tourism entrepreneur Tek Chandra Pokharel passed away in Kathmandu this morning.

He breathed his last at Om Hospital, Kathmandu.

The veteran entrepreneur was associated with Nepali tourism industry for nearly five decades. He was the owner of Shangri La Tours, Himalayan Journeys and Kathmandu’s iconic Rum Doodle restaurant – the popular hangout point for mountaineers.

Pokharel was one of the founders of Himalayan Rescue Association (HRA) which has been working to make Nepali mountains safe by raising awareness among trekkers and mountaineers about high altitude sickness and also providing medical service to trekkers and mountain in high Himalayas. He also served as the president of Nepal Mountaineering Association (NMA), Trekking Agencies’ Association of Nepal and Nepal Association of Travel Agents (now Nepal Association of Tour and Travel Agents).

The senior entrepreneur also served as the Honorary Consul General of Mexico in Nepal.

Issuing a statement, Nepal Tourism Board (NTB) said it was saddened to know about the sad demise of Tek Chandra Pokharel, doyen of Nepalese tourism. “He was a founding chairman of many tourism related associations of Nepal. Well-versed in tourism, he was involved in preparation of Nepal Tourism Master Plan,” the statement added.

Trekking Agencies’ Association of Nepal (TAAN) also said it was saddened to know

that its former president is no more.