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Travel industry news

03 Sep 2015

BY Edward Robertson


W&O unveils new India trips

Western & Oriental is launching a programme of long weekend city breaks in India.

Mumbai market seller

The five-day itineraries are available initially in Delhi, Mumbai (pictured) and Hyderabad and combine opportunities for both sight-seeing and shopping.


They are being introduced in the wake of the Indian authorities allowing online visa applications as well as to meet the British public’s increasing demand for exotic weekend breaks.


Nikhil Chhibber, Western & Oriental’s India product manager, said the Delhi trip includes accommodation at The Imperial Hotel while a privately-chauffered car is included in the package price to help customers get around easily.


The Mumbai trip includes accommodation at The Oberoi Hotel and leads in at £749pp, making it the cheapest of the three options.


Meanwhile, the Hyderabad trip offers a number of cultural attractions including a vintage car excursion to the monument and mosque of Charminar.


Chhibber said: “The process of obtaining a visa for India is now simpler, quicker and more affordable, which really opens the destination up for late bookings and the short breaks market.


“A flight to Delhi is less than an hour longer than a flight to New York and 90 minutes longer than a flight to Dubai."


“Both of those destinations are popular for short getaways and our new city breaks will enable India to viably compete as a vibrant and culture-rich option for the same market of spontaneous bookers.”


She added the recent visa changes meant Brits can make a application for a tourist e-visa up to four days before departure.


Group head of public relations Kate Popham said the trips were likely to prove popular with people who have visited the country before and are looking for a different weekend break.


She added: “India has come into the public consciousness more than it was a few years ago. It is about raising awareness that India is not that far away and does not need to be booked so far in advance now.


“The trips are less for first-timers as it is such a vast destination that people who go for the first time will want to do a more touring itinerary.”

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