Seychelles has been seeing the number of visitors from the UAE grow in numbers. The islands have two Tourism Board offices in the region, one sitting in the Seychelles Embassy in Abu Dhabi and their main office sitting in Dubai. This arrangement gives them a perfect working partnership with both Emirates and Etihad Airlines as they are based in the base cities of these airlines that are now serving the Seychelles with virtually two flights daily from each of these hub bases.
Seychelles has attracted both the nationals and foreign employees working in the Middle East. This has been easy for them with the increase in air connectivity, but also because of the no visa policy which enables holiday makers to decide at the last moment to book a holiday to this paradise destination. The Seychelles’ success in the Middle East has prompted a new initiative to get the islands even more known.
Omeir Travel Agency, the GSA for Air Seychelles, took the initiative to collaborate with Air Seychelles and the Seychelles Tourism Board Office, Abu Dhabi, to conduct a workshop and presentation of the islands to 42 of its strong travel consultants and managers in Abu Dhabi on Saturday, January 19, 2013.
The purpose of the presentation was three-fold:
- introduce the participants to the products and services of the Air Seychelles A330-200 aircraft. It now flies into Abu Dhabi four times a week and the flight only takes four hours.
- further acquaint them to the Seychelles islands as a destination for, not only honeymooners and couples intending to get married there, but to families who are looking for another world to go for their holidays.
- inform the participants about the exciting and recurring local events on the Seychelles calendar.
The agents were presented with the destination presentation which highlighted the location of the Seychelles, history, general information (one of which is that no visa is required to visit the Seychelles for all nationalities), culture, people, environment, establishments, activities, and USPs (Unique Selling Points). The various annual events were then introduced, namely the Carnaval International de Victoria which runs from Friday, February 8, to Sunday, February 10, 2013; Miss Seychelles 2013; Subios Festival of the Sea; and the Eco-healing Marathon.
The workshop has equipped Omeir travel agents with, not only a more profound knowledge of the destination, but has also created a strong interest for the Seychelles, thereby ensuring that they become Seychelles Ambassadors within their own workplace.
Ms. Esther, who heads the Seychelles Office in Abu Dhabi Office, emphasised that contrary to the widespread belief that the Seychelles are a luxury resort destination, the islands have facilities to cater to all market segments and budgets. As a result, the Seychelles Secrets website with its range of products was displayed.
The Seychelles Promotional DVD – another world - played at the end of the presentation gave all the participants a taste of what the Seychelles has to offer.
After the workshop, the Seychelles hospitality was extended to the participants in the form of its home-made banana and breadfruit chips.
The feedback received from the participants after the presentation was very positive, and a few indicated that they were already selling the Seychelles islands and would continue to do so in the future.
Those who assisted in organising the presentation and making it a success are as follows:
Omeir Travel Agency, Mr Ganesh Ullal, Director of Marketing; Omeir Travel Agency, Mr. Mohd. Enamul Haq, Director Operations; Omeir Travel Agency, Mr. Javed Akbar, Director General Services and Quality; Omeir Travel Agency, Mr. Bhojaraj Rao; Air Seychelles representative: Ms. Lisie Agrippine; Seychelles Tourism Board Office, Abu Dhabi: Ms. Aliette Esther.