The Western India Chapter of the Travel Agents Federation of India has been guiding its members in this hour of need and advising them to register with both the MSME and the Ministry of Tourism urgently to reap long-term benefits. It recently conducted a physical meeting for its members to interact with the new national team.
The Western India Chapter of the Travel Agents Federation of India (TAFI) recently held its third physical meeting since the pandemic hit. This time it was held in Mumbai with the new national team of TAFI addressing the members for the first time since the elections. The event that was attended by almost 100 members, also saw multiple presentations on Europe with five airlines (Lufthansa, Air France, KLM, Indigo and Vistara)and twotourism boards (Switzerland Tourism and Atout France India)along with VFS Mumbai.
Jitul Mehta, Chairman, Western India, TAFI,who has been encouraging his members to register themselves with MoT and as MSMEs, said, “I have been talking about MoT and MSME since the last five years. We have also conducted presentations on cybercrime and insurance. The next big thing the members need to understand is the IT policies of India. It’s a very detailed subject. These topics are very close to my heart and I shall continue to focus on them for our members.”
He also explained the benefits in terms of the government schemes for accredited tourism entities and how MSME registration can help them obtain business loans at a lower rate with minimum documentation. Mehta elaborated that being registered as a MSME could also help to recover outstanding from corporates. He assured members that the Chapter committee would extend all the possible help to all Western India members.
Mehta added, “Now that some European countries have opened up, we invited a few companies to talk to them about the protocols, procedures, and requirements for tourists. We have always made sure that TAFI WI every meeting is dedicated to a specific subject and theme. The national team has shared their vision for the future with members. In our following meetings we are thinking of addressing key issues such as TCS, GST. TCS is a burning issue right now and we are planning the meeting and get some good speakers.”
Echoing sentiments of his president, Mehta says, “We want member contribution. They should feel like a part of the team, Only then will they start participating. This is what we want from all our members.” TAFI President, Ajay Prakash, also shared his vision of a rejuvenated TAFI equipped to cope with the ever changing new reality. He apprised members of the steps taken in the last month – a fortnightly newsletter, the meeting with MoS Civil Aviation, outreach to the membership, discussions at FAITH regarding the need for empirical data on the industry and the formation of various sub committees. The national team, he assured the members, was always available to every member to help and address their concerns. He also requested members to come forward to join the committees formed at the national level to handle various issues.