Kerala eye on Israeli tourists – participates in IMTM 2019
In a bid to expand its presence in the Mediterranean countries, Kerala Tourism has participated in the International Mediterranean Tourism Market (IMTM) in Tel Aviv
P Bala Kiran, Tourism Director led the State delegation at the two-day IMTM held last week. IMTM is the largest annual professional tourism fair of its kind in the Eastern Mediterranean and the official and only professional exhibition for the tourism trade market in Israel.
“In the highly competitive global marketplace, we need to scout for new source markets to attract tourists. Our participation in a prestigious event such as IMTM will act as a trigger to meet that objective,” said Tourism Minister Kadakampally Surendran.
The minister further said it was an extremely successful outing for the State tourism. Kerala Tourism launched a sleek and glossy coffee-table book, a first-of-its-kind visual odyssey of the Jews who decided to make Kerala their home before many of them decided to head to Israel.
At present Israel have direct flight from Tel Aviv to Delhi and Mumbai. From September Arkia, Israeli Airlinies will commence flight from Tel Aviv to Kochi, giving a major boost to tourism in India and Kerala in particular.
Tourism Secretary Rani George said participation in IMTM was part of an aggressive campaign to woo visitors from non-traditional markets.
“Forging strong ties with Israel’s tourism segment will open new vistas of expansion for Kerala Tourism in that region,” said the tourism secretary.
As per reports, over 15,300 Israeli tourists visited Kerala in 2018, a 29 per cent increase when compared to 2017. There has been a 15 per cent increase in tourist arrivals from Israel during 2013-18.
“We held a series of discussions with various stakeholders of Israel’s tourism and hospitality industry, and it would pave the way for two-way visits,” said Tourism Director Balakiran.
IMTM 2019, is the 25th annual international tourism exhibition in Tel Aviv, which is the official and only professional exhibition for the tourism trade market in Israel. The fair is highlighted by professional workshops, seminars and press conferences. IMTM is also attended by groups of agents from abroad with the framework of tours to Israel organized by the Israel Ministry of Tourism.