Untouched India & Sri Lanka

Untouched India & Sri Lanka

Promoting untouched and little-known regions of India and Sri Lanka was high on the agenda when the World Journeys Masterclass was held at Highwic House in Auckland.
Te agents involved were all top-selling agents for World Journeys, with the number of participants limited to 40.
Adi Bajaj, of Perfect Travel, says that while the Golden Triangle remains an important destination, a key emphasis with this week’s session was on promoting pre- and post- add-on opportunities.

These could take clients to regions and experiences they had not necessarily thought of.
Fellow presenter Anuruddha Bandara, Encounters Asia, was focussed on Sri Lanka, but the aim was the same.

‘I am talking about new adventures and different alternatives – things like bush walk camps, where 75% of the time participants see elephants on the trail.’
World Journeys director Kate Gohar presented the World Resorts of Distinction properties in the Maldives – Soneva Fushi and the new Soneva Jani.

‘We are increasingly getting requests to add on the Maldives after a full-on Indian or Sri Lankan itinerary, as it is a chance to really chill out and relax in the lap of luxury before heading home,’ says Gohar.
After the presentations, agents were treated to some traditional Punjabi entertainment, an Indian feast and prize draws that resulted in Carol Kirkup (YOU Travel Manly) and Sue Mist (Travel Managers) each winning a Golden Triangle India trip for two, including a Palace stay, and Michele Murphy (Bon Voyage Cruises & Travel) winning a five-day Sri Lanka itinerary. Other prizes included Pashminas and an Indian cookbook, and were awarded to Angela Manase (Manase Travel), Chris Hammonds (Mondo Travel Mt Eden) and Jill Gothard (Bon Voyage Cruises & Travel).
Commenting on current trends, Gohar says in India World Journeys is increasingly selling itineraries using heritage properties, including the hotel that was used in the Best Exotic Marigold Hotel movies, along with personal favourites such as the Samode Palace just outside of Jaipur, and some former Maharajahs Palaces.

‘A popular package reflecting this is the nine-day Luxury Palaces of India which has clients living like royalty from Delhi through to Jaipur, Jodhpur and Udaipur. We’re also finding increasing interest in Southern India.
‘In Sri Lanka, we are introducing two new itineraries for 2018, including a two-week Complete Sri Lanka itinerary, which is the ideal ‘highlights’ package.’
World Journeys World 2018 brochure has just gone to print and should be out with agents by the end of the month.