Monday 28 April 2014

The rising Importance of the female travel market in Asia Pacific

Luxperience 2014 and the rising Importance of the female travel market in Asia Pacific
The rise of the female traveller, on business and leisure, in Asia Pacific continues to grow at an exponential rate.  By 2030, it is estimated that it will have increased by as much as 400%. Luxperience 2014 is working with its exhibitors to ensure that they are responding to and capitalising on this market trend. 

Lindy Andrews, CEO of Luxperience says, “There is no doubt that there has been a rise in female travellers across Asia. The majority of these affluent Asian women travelling are from the wealthier areas of Asia, such as Tokyo, Singapore, Taiwan, Beijing, Shanghai, Hong Kong or Seoul.  Just as an example, in Singapore 32% of all business travellers are female and Hong Kong has the largest percentage of female business travellers at 36%. At Luxperience 2014, we are happy to share these learnings with our exhibitors to ensure they have the market knowledge prior to their joining us so that they can cater to these  all-important markets and are thus able to establish meaningful connections with our international buyers.” 

Some pointers from the Luxperience 2014 team on how to cater even more effectively to the female travel market in Asia Pacific:

·         Solo travel is a growing trend amongst female travellers – consider introducing a no-single supplement during your shoulder months
·         Include an experiential aspect to your product - experiential packages have gained traction with many women citing adventure sports rather than shopping as the past time for their holiday.
·        Women  are known to do their research through peer-to-peer recommendation – win over the female travel sector through “real” and effective engagement on your  social media channels
·         For hotels – consider introducing women-only floors
·      Hotel spas – offer a health and wellness centre as opposed to a fitness studio, or  if space and investment in your property are a concern, look to providing  in-room spa services  and/ or  partnering with a local accredited alternative therapy practitioner     
·       Guided shopping – have ready a list of top 10 shops in your city / location for women travellers looking for some retail therapy.  This responds to a market trend amongst Asian female travellers in particular.  Research shows that many purchase travel as a gift for themselves, or as a reward or an opportunity to celebrate a special occasion. On a trip like this, spending levels reach between $5,000 and $20,000. In fact, a recent survey shows that affluent Asian women are more likely to purchase an overseas holiday than men (96% vs. 89%) and these women have the financial power to buy luxury premium goods. In China alone, female consumers dominate the purchase of luxury goods.

Lindy says “Given the massive spending power of the Asian woman, tourism operators need to think about tapping into this market. The number of women travelling in Asia will continue to rise, especially as Asian economies and the travel industry continues to mature; tourism operators need to respond to this.”

Exhibiting at Luxperience 2014, Beverly Hills Conference and Visitors Bureau share that they have not only seen a rise in female Asian travellers, but also male. In fact,  shopping from Asia visitors (both male and female) yields the highest revenue to the destination. Some of its luxury retailers say as much as 50% of purchases are made by Asian visitors. The wide acceptance of China Union Pay debit and credit cards in Beverly Hills adds convenience to shopping from mainland China.  
To ensure they are ‘China ready’, the Beverly Hills Conference and Visitors Bureau (BHCVB) has ensured that several of its five star hotels include amenities such as Chinese breakfasts, tea and packaged noodles with kettles in each room, Chinese newspapers and slippers. They are also working closely with a local affiliate of China National Television in Guangzhou to investigate adding Chinese TV stations in their hotel rooms.  The Visitor Center also employs bilingual staff who are trained to assist visitors with directions, suggestions and collateral all in-language. BHCVB will use their participation at Luxperience as a platform to update Asian buyer delegates at the global business exchange, on these initiatives.
Luxperience 2014 will take place from 31 August to 3 September 2014 in Sydney Australia.

For participation from India, get in touch with Deepika Chowdhry at 

Thursday 16 January 2014

IMEX Eyes Industry Predictions for 2014 - Content, Tech, “Glocal” CSR, Diversity and The Happiness Factor

With its eyes and ears on the global meetings marketplace from two vantage points -- one in Europe at IMEX in Frankfurt and one in the US at IMEX America -- the IMEX Group today offered its predictions for meetings industry trends and changes in 2014.  These are supported by speaker and expert anecdotes from the recent IMEX America 2013 in Las Vegas.

1.  Content Gets Bigger as Attention Spans Grow Shorter

The meetings landscape has changed. It’s now content that’s defining meeting and event type, not the other way around. The incredible growth of YouTube, TED and short, sharp TV and video news clips (including the birth of super-bite-sized Vine) means attention spans are shorter than ever. Four minutes is a lifetime online. Expect meetings and event content to be delivered in ever more entertaining, diverse and digestible pieces. The label ‘hybrid’ fades away as all meetings and events become multi-faceted and multi-dimensional for participants on and off-site.

Speaking on the INCON-sponsored Social Hub at IMEX America, Glen Thayer, the Voice of Meetings & Events, said: “The attention span of our attendees is a big factor. My tolerance for a YouTube video is 60 seconds and I’m done! That’s a big challenge…both at the physical live event and online.” [See links, below].

2.  Happiness is Hip

The big watchword for our working lives in the 90s and new millennium was ‘work/life balance’. In 2014 this shifts to ‘workplace spirituality’. A growing number of organizations recognize that employee loyalty and motivation hinges on a convergence of personal values with corporate ones.

IMEX America 2013 MPI Keynote, CEO & Chief Happiness Officer of Delivering Happiness, Jenn Lim, was on trend when she urged her audience to think of happiness as a science that can be applied at work. “When values, vision and purpose in individuals and organizations come together, the impact can be so positive, and it’s about much more than a happy worker being a productive worker,” she said. Expect more organizations to embrace happiness as their ethos for growth in 2014.

3. Technology Connects the Dots

Convergence and connectivity. Both will be the next big technology wins the meetings industry strives for in 2014. As Lawrence Coburn, CEO of DoubleDutch, and Michael Owen, CEO of Eventgenuity observed at IMEX America 2013, many big technology advances have been made, now they need to be managed. Coburn expects “the bandwidth of Apps to get lighter”, where Owen sees regulation and standards coming into play, such as through the new Apex Standards. He’s also clear that the future is “not about more technology but how that technology is delivered.”

2014 will see offline coming online even more energetically, further notes Coburn. Engagement will also lead to better data capture with the ultimate win being deeper business insight. The proliferation of smartphones and “wearables” with their innate ability to capture data will also improve ROI, forecasts Coburn.

4. Social Media Shifts Up, Out and Everywhere

“Everyone’s had their first go at social media. Now it’s time for phase two,” is how Sam Stanton, President of described it on the IMEX America 2013 Social Hub. “Expect to see some really cool crossover where participants who are highly social at home find they can still behave that way at an event.” In 2014 social media starts to receive its own budget, and begins to play a meaningful and measurable part in marketing and communications strategies across the meetings and events industry. Witness IMEX showing the way with IMEXLive, its online (and essentially, short-term and pop-up) ‘window onto the show.’

5. “Glocal” –  Helping Hands on Your Doorstep

With the launch of the biannual 2014 IMEX Challenge -- which will involve building a new healing garden at the Shade Tree shelter in Las Vegas next October -- the IMEX team demonstrates a growing sustainability trend: keeping it local. Where once the international nature of the meetings industry meant thousands of opportunities to ‘do good and give back’ in far flung corners of the world, the trend now is to reach out to help those right on your doorstep.  “Like many growing and successful cities, Vegas still has pockets of poverty and groups who need special support,” says IMEX Group CEO, Carina Bauer. “IMEX and its Challenge host sponsors – Sands Cares and GES (Global Experience Specialists) - all appreciate how lucky we are to work in the meetings industry, to travel and enjoy experiences that others only dream about. We want to show our commitment to the whole city…and that means being hands-on with our two legacy projects, Opportunity Village and the Shade Tree shelter for women, children and their pets. In Frankfurt we also support the Lichtblick Homeless Shelter and Maisha’s Sewing Project; and in our home town of Brighton, England we support a young people’s homeless charity – The Clocktower.”

6. Meetings Sector as Leading Economic Indicator

Could 2014 be the year when the meetings and events industry is finally recognized as an important economic indicator? Economic impact studies are now commonplace in at least five mature markets, and they have been rigorously executed. And, when the recent US Government shutdown threatened to stifle business on many fronts, President Obama was quick to request a meeting with U.S. Travel Association CEO Roger Dow. This is in stark contrast to the post-AIG panic when the meetings industry was lobbying from the back foot and the rallying cry was “if you’re not at the table, then you’re on the menu.” As Dan Berger, CEO of Social Tables declared at IMEX America, “Those of us in the industry know that when meetings and events start to rise they are the pulse of growth.” If the Purchasing Managers Index can do it, then why not a meetings market barometer as a reliable forecasting tool?

7. Workplace diversity

Where once a hot conversation topic was demographic shift and what that meant for the global meetings and events market, now the big debate of 2014 looks set to be ‘workplace diversity’. With so many generations working alongside each other (be it virtually or physically) and issues of gender balance and racial diversity still being addressed, organizations are having to look at their recruitment and talent development strategies with more creativity, and awareness. In July 2013 Deloitte University Press went one step further, suggesting that ‘diversity of thought’ is now the new frontier: “Advances in neurological research that are untangling how each of us thinks and solves problems can help organizations, including governments, operationalize diversity of thought and eventually change how they define and harness human capital.”

For more information: and

Thursday 9 January 2014

Luxperience Launches 2014 Global Pop-Up Programme

Luxperience Launches 2014 Global Pop-Up Programme
New York, London, Beijing, Sao Paolo

January 2014 - Luxperience marks the beginning of the New Year with the launch of its 2014 Global Pop-Up Programme, designed to take suppliers direct to key markets around the world - the USA, the United Kingdom, China and Brazil.     

Luxperience’s Pop-Up events will appear in some of the world’s most iconic cities.  The Pop-Ups will provide suppliers with enhanced opportunities to establish business relationships in strategic markets, prior to Luxperience 2014 taking place in Sydney from 31 August to 3 September.  A selection of 20 suppliers will be attending each Pop-Up event to with 50 elite high-end and corporate travel buyers.   

Luxperience is the only high-end travel trade event to offer such opportunities. Lindy Andrews, CEO of Luxperience says, “We are very excited about our 2014 Pop-Up programme.  I believe our approach reflects the global profile of Luxperience, as well as our commitment to provide our suppliers with the best return on investment, by further increasing their exposure to an international audience.”

The first Luxperience Pop-Up will take place in New York at 6pm on 26th February at Pranna on Madison Avenue where suppliers will be able to showcase their product during an informal cocktail event. 
Subsequent Pop-Ups will take place as follows:
·         London, UK - on 3 March 2014 at Beaufort House Chelsea.  Event starts at 4pm and concludes with dinner
·         Beijing, China   - on 20 March 2014 at the Waldorf Hotel.  Event starts at 6pm and concludes with dinner

·         Sao Paolo, Brazil - 5 May 2014 at Tivoli Sao Paulo – Mofarrej. A cocktail event starting at 6pm.   For further information on participation at Luxperience 2014, please contact: or visit


Tuesday 25 June 2013

A 10-Step Program for India’s Economy

A 10-Step Program for India’s Economy

By Jim O’Neill Jun 23, 2013 6:00 PM ET
It’s fashionable to say the era of strong emerging-market growth is over. As the U.S. recovers, the global cost of capital will rise, holding back investment; against this background, avoiding the next crisis is the best that most emerging economies can do. If you take this view, India might seem a perfect example, with its widening current account deficit, heavy public borrowing, persistent inflation and weak currency.
I don’t think so. As a general matter, emerging-market gloom is overdone. India, in particular, could teach the pessimists a lesson.
Last week, I made a quick visit to see the chief minister of Gujarat, Narendra Modi. He’d asked me to give a presentation on how India could realize its still-enormous potential. I went through points I’d first discussed in a paper I co-wrote with Tushar Poddar in 2008: Ten Things for India to Achieve its 2050 Potential. It’s striking to me that, five years later, our recommendations don’t need revising. (They do need elaborating, and I’ll get into more detail in an updated study and further columns. Modi and I are planning a conference of experts before the end of this year.)
I’ll state no opinion on Modi’s chances of becoming prime minister after next year’s general election -- it has been announced that he’ll lead the opposition Bharatiya Janata Party’s campaign. He’s a controversial figure. Detractors call him a sectarian extremist. I will say this: He’s good on economics, and that’s one of the things India desperately needs in a leader.
Cultivating Growth
Like all Indians, Modi loves acronyms. Me too. I admire his MG-squared -- minimum government, maximum governance -- and P2G2 -- pro-active, pro-people, good governance. That sums it up pretty well. I don’t think it’s a coincidence that Gujarat has avoided the slowdown that has almost halved India’s national rate of growth. The state just keeps on growing at double-digit rates.
Long-term growth depends ultimately on just two things -- the number of workers and how productive they are. India’s demographics are remarkable. The country is on track to grow its workforce by 140 million between 2000 and 2020. That increase is the equivalent of the working population of France, Germany, Italy and the U.K. combined.
Even with unspectacular growth of a little more than 6 percent a year, India’s economy could be 40 times bigger by 2050 than it was in 2000 -- about as big as the U.S. economy will probably be by then (though not as big as China). But it could do so much better than that. Growth of 8.5 percent over the entire period is possible -- with growth of more than 10 percent over the next 15 to 20 years not out of the question -- provided it makes some changes.
It’s all about productivity. India scores poorly on indexes of economic variables that are critical for economic efficiency -- worse than Brazil, China and even Russia. To change that, it needs to do 10 things:
1. Improve its governance. This is probably the hardest and most important task -- the precondition for the rest. Modi is right: Whoever leads the next government in 2014, India needs maximum governance and minimum government. There is no point having the world’s largest democracy unless it leads to effective government.
2. Fix primary and secondary education. There has been some progress here, but a huge number of young people still get little or no schooling. I sit on the board of Teach for All, a global umbrella organization for groups that encourage the brightest graduates to spend at least two years teaching. Today India has about 350 teachers in these programs. It could do with 350,000 or more.
3. Improve colleges and universities. India has too few excellent institutions. Its share of places in the Shanghai ranking of the world’s top universities should be proportional to its share of global gross domestic product -- meaning 10 universities in the top 500 (it currently has just one). Make that an official goal.
4. Adopt an inflation target, and make it the center of a new macroeconomic policy framework.
5. Introduce a medium to long-term fiscal-policy framework, perhaps with ceilings as in the Maastricht Treaty -- a deficit of less than 3 percent of GDP and debt of less than 60 percent of GDP.
6. Increase trade with its neighbors. Indian exports to China could be close to $1 trillion by 2050, almost the size of its entire GDP in 2008. But India has little trade with Bangladesh and Pakistan. There’s no better way to promote peaceful relations than to expand trade -- and that means imports as well as exports.
7. Liberalize financial markets. India needs huge amounts of domestic and foreign capital to achieve its potential -- and a better-functioning capital market to allocate it wisely.
8. Innovate in farming. Gujarat isn’t a traditional agricultural producer, but it has improved productivity with initiatives like its “white revolution” in milk production. The whole nation, still greatly dependent on farming, needs enormous improvements.
9. Build more infrastructure. I flew in to Ahmedabad via Delhi, and out via Mumbai, all in a day. I got where I needed to go -- but it’s obvious how much more India needs to do. Adopt some of that Chinese drive to invest in infrastructure.
10. Protect the environment. India can’t achieve 8.5 percent growth for the next 30 to 40 years unless it takes steps to safeguard environmental quality and use energy and other resources more efficiently. Encouraging the private sector to invest in sustainable technologies can boost growth in its own right.
I’ll have a lot more to say about the details as this project moves forward. For now, suffice to say that India’s potential is vast -- and given the will, it can be tapped.
(Jim O’Neill, former chairman of Goldman Sachs Asset Management, is a Bloomberg View columnist.) 

Tuesday 27 November 2012

ILTM Spa - second edition to be held in London from 30th September- 2nd October 2013

Reed Travel Exhibitions (RTE), organiser of International Luxury Travel Market (ILTM), will hold its second ILTM Spa, next year in London from 30th September – 2nd October 2013.

Following the successful launch event held in Austria this year, ILTM Spa will coincide with the annual Tatler Spa Awards seen as one of the world’s international annual spa events.

Alison Gilmore, ILTM Exhibition Director, commented: “ILTM Spa is a high end focused event dedicated to innovators of spa and wellness travel which includes destination spas and leaders in the medical tourism sector. The decision to hold the event in London next year alongside the Tatler Spa Awards, helps bring the whole industry together in one place.  Earlier this year a report by The Director Magazine said that the value of this industry is £39bn with over £5.2bn being spent on spa services in the UK alone, so it’s fitting we meet in London in 2013.”

Francisca Kellett, Travel editor at Tatler added "Tatler is thrilled to be associated with ILTM Spa. Spa breaks are hugely important to our readers (lucky us), and bringing the best of the industry all together in one place next October is an exciting prospect."

The focus of ILTM Spa is to deliver both business and education, so that the travel and leisure industry can keep up to date with the latest destination spas, resorts and personalised experiences offered alongside some of the very best treatments, programmes and therapies.

Up to 100 VIP international and UK Hosted Buyers representing the senior decision makers from specialist tour operators and individual planners of bespoke spa and travel itineraries will be pre-qualified and personally invited to do business with up to 100 exhibitors. There will be a conference on the afternoon of the opening day (30th September), which will focus on the latest spa and wellness issues and medical tourism trends. The following two days will comprise one-to-one pre-scheduled appointments between exhibitors and buyers, and will conclude with the annual Tatler Spa Awards.

Thursday 27 September 2012

Next Hearing On Tourism Ban On October 3

The tourism sector now has to wait until the 3rd of October to see whether or not the wildlife parks will open to the public. After hearing arguments on Thursday, by the MoEF, the Honourable Bench advised the States and all other petitioners to submit any and all objections to the new guidelines within 3 days. The Bench further stated that the counsels of all the petitioners will be given 10 minutes each on 3rd October to make an oral presentation of their objections. 

The Bench made it absolutely clear that it would only pass judgment once it was completely satisfied that the proposed guidelines were adequate and after the State Governments were notified to follow them. The Bench further indicated that it was inclined to modifying the ban on tourism in core areas as undue prejudice and harm was being inflicted on various parties as a result of their ban. 

With these directions from the Bench it is clear that both judges on the panel are positively inclined to open the parks but it would require them to hear out each and every petitioner. They also indicated that they may open the parks with the current proposed guidelines or with certain modifications to the guidelines. 

The nod that they have given the tourism sector is the understanding that a long drawn out court case hurts the livelihood of those involved and that they are determined to deal with this matter swiftly and without prejudice. 
Mr. Parvez Dewan, IAS, will take over from Rajen Habib (R H) Khwaja as Secretary - Tourism, Government of India. A 1977-batch IAS of Jammu & Kashmir (J&K) cadre, Dewan will assume office from first week of October 2012 in the Ministry of Tourism. Parvez Dewan has been Secretary in Ministry of Overseas Indian Affairs before this. In his more than three decades of service, he has handled various res
ponsibilities, including in the Department of Tourism in both home cadre, J&K, as well as in the Centre cadre. He was Secretary - Tourism, J&K from 1992 to 1994 and Commissioner-cum-Secretary of J&K between 1998 and 2001. He was also the Chairman and Managing Director, India Tourism Development Corporation (ITDC), a public sector under the Ministry of Tourism, Government of India between 2006 and 2009. He was instrumental in preparing the groundwork for Commonwealth Games as Chairman and Managing Director of ITDC.