Israel Ministry of Tourism conducts roadshow in Kolkata

With an aim to enhance commercial ties with the Indian travel trade fraternity, Israel Ministry of Tourism (IMOT) has conducted a roadshow in Kolkata on August 29. A 20-member delegation, comprising of destination management companies (DMCs) from Israel, interacted with over 100 key travel and tour operators, MICE providers, up-market leisure operators and media personnel during the event. The ministry has also conducted another road show in the capital city of New Delhi on 30th August, 2018.

The roadshow started off with a presentation followed by an interactive workshop with the IMOT team and trade partners. The roadshow included B2B sessions, education programmes and workshops to aid trade members in planning itineraries and responding to customer queries.

“Tourism is on the rise in Israel and inbound arrivals from India has appreciably increased in the last few years. With a half-yearly record growth of 82 per cent as compared to the same period in 2015, more than 44,000 Indian tourists have already visited the country from January to July 2018. Travellers from West Bengal are experiential and prefer exotic destinations that are unique in their offerings. Hence, the idea was to introduce the varied leisure offerings of the country through the roadshow. Moreover, with the opening of the Kolkata Israel Visa Application Centre for West Bengal and North-eastern states, we are confident that this will be seen as a welcoming move to increase interest among travellers from these regions of India,” said Hassan Madah, Director, Israel Ministry of Tourism – India & Philippines.

The new visa centre in Kolkata will no longer require residents from West Bengal and North-eastern states to send in their documents to the Embassy in New Delhi. Additionally, visa applications in the jurisdiction under the New Delhi Centre are also acceptable at the new Kolkata Centre. Visa categories include B1 for employment, B2 for business, tourism, meeting or conference and A2 for students.

“We have positively introduced various initiatives to ease the visa procedure for Indians. Along with relaxation of documents for persons who have availed visas of Schengen countries, US, Canada, Australia or Israel and have completed their travel to these countries Fast Track visa processing for Israel was also incorporated earlier this year. Additionally, reduction in visa fee to Rs 1,100 will encourage more people to choose Israel as a holiday destination boosting inbound numbers from India,” he said.