Kazakhstan is out to woo the Indian MICE market and the travel trade as it recently showcased its products at an event in New Delhi in association with Global Air.
Organisers of the event, VikasKhanduri, CEO, Holiday Merchants, said that they have been known as the Russian consolidators for a long time and hence they became an obvious choice to represent Central Asian region as well. “We want to project Kazakhstan as not just a place with great nightlife, but with great entertainment, great MICE, niche tourism, as well as luxury travel. The response has been great and we have already started getting enquiries for incentives for corporates. We exclusively work with the travel trade fraternity, which too is inquisitive about this destination and wants to explore possibilities to sell it.”
Stressing on the tourism potential of the destination, BulatSarsenbayev, Ambassador, Republic of Kazakhstan, says, “Kazakhstan is not far away from India. It’s only a three-hour flight from Delhi and there is great connectivity between the two destinations. Air Astana offers a daily flight between Delhi and Almaty; and there are talks to increase the frequency to at least 10 flights in a week very soon. We also have charter flights between Almaty and Goa during the peak season.”
Increased connectivity would be a great boon for MICE, revealed Khanduri. “With great venues, which can accommodate 400-500 people, and a daily flight there is a possibility of organising events easily in this destination. Economical hotels, vibrant lifestyle, and warm people make it the right place for any MICE activity,” he added.
In fact, Sarsenbayev claimed that he has seen the numbers increasing between both the destinations. “When I joined in 2014, the number of Indians travelling to Kazakhstan was only 6000, and in 2016 we are expecting around 11,000 Indians travelling to the destination. In 2015, a total of 16,000 tourists travelled from Kazakhstan to India, visiting mainly Delhi, Goa, Kerala, Chennai and even Shimla.”