Strategic travel agreement between Singapore and India a step in the right direction

Strategic travel agreement between Singapore and India a step in the right direction

A Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) was signed between Sentosa Development Corporation (SDC) of Singapore and Thomas Cook (India) Ltd. to enhance Sentosa’s visibility and visitations with focus on product development and promotions with the India company.

Indian travel companies are exploring collaborations with leading companies abroad to increase  awareness and make inroads to the nation’s travel and tourism. Similarly, companies outside India want a foothold in the country because of its large market among other benefits. The latest partnership between SDC Singapore and Thomas Cooke India was signed on May 3, 2019 and is a step in the right direction to achieving these goals.

Thomas Cook (India) Ltd., an integrated travel and related financial services company, entered into this strategic agreement with Sentosa Development Corporation (SDC), Singapore, to bring more tourists from India to Sentosa. The MOU was signed between Mahesh Iyer, Executive Director and Chief Executive Officer, Thomas Cook (India) Ltd., and Quek Swee Kuan, Chief Executive Officer, SDC, at the Thomas Cook India Group headquarters in Mumbai.

Thomas Cook India’s internal data has revealed a significant and growing-interest from Indian consumers for engaging experiences. With Singapore being a convenient short haul with extended access across India’s metro and regional markets, Sentosa, which was recently named Best Attraction at the Travel Weekly Asia Readers’ Choice Awards 2018 and Best Singapore Destination at the Tripzilla Excellence Awards for the second year running, has emerged as a high potential opportunity. Its diversity of attractions, such as Wings of Time, Madame TussaudsTM Singapore, Skyline Luge Sentosa, Sentosa 4D AdventureLand, Trick Eye museum, Universal Studios SingaporeTM, and the S.E.A. AquariumTM, have been witnessing demand from not just India’s children (the new decision makers in family travel), but also Millennials/Gen Z, and groups of friends, b-leisure segments and women travelers. This is also evident in Sentosa’s visitorship numbers, with India currently ranked as the island’s top source market.

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Leveraging this high growth potential, Thomas Cook India and SDC have entered into a three-year strategic agreement to deepen the relationship between both parties, strengthen Sentosa’s position as a top-of-mind destination for all Indian tourists visiting Singapore, increase Sentosa’s capture rates of the India market particularly in Tier 2 and 3 cities, and grow visitorship to and spend on the island. To this end, both parties will collaborate on a multipronged effort comprising activities such as product development and joint consumer promotions, as well as publicity to raise Sentosa’s profile in the India market.

While Sentosa has featured as part of Thomas Cook India’s Singapore portfolio, the company has now focused on curating exclusive Sentosa packages as well. Additionally, as part of the partnership, Thomas Cook India will offer enhanced access to multiple Sentosa attractions, coupled with exciting promotions and special offers on accommodation and attractions.

Speaking on the partnership, Mahesh Iyer – Executive Director and Chief Executive Officer, Thomas Cook (India) Ltd., said: “Our unerring focus on customer delight has been the cornerstone of our partnership with Sentosa Development Corporation. With experiential travel seeing significant and growing demand, Sentosa offers a perfect fit, with a plethora of engaging and enriching experiences in Singapore – a favorite with Indian holidaymakers and B-leisure segments. It is truly an honor to partner with SDC in redefining the Singapore experience via a dynamic range of Sentosa products across both our B2C and B2B markets.”

Commenting on the MOU, Quek Swee Kuan, Chief Executive Officer, Sentosa Development Corporation, Singapore, said: “Being a leading holiday destination that attracts some 19 million guests annually, Sentosa is undeniably an integral part of the Singapore experience, featuring a range of leisure offerings from beaches to dining experiences, themed attractions, and hotels all on one island. Our partnership with Thomas Cook India illustrates SDC’s efforts to engage and bring even more value and fun to our international audiences. With India being Sentosa’s top inbound market for the last 3 years, we look forward to collaborating with Thomas Cook India to tap on this growth potential and welcome more tourists to Singapore and Sentosa.”

GB Srithar, Regional Director, South Asia, Middle East & Africa, Singapore Tourism Board (STB), witnessing the MOU signing ceremony, said: “India continues to be the third largest visitor arrival source market for Singapore. Over the last few of decades, Singapore tourism stakeholders have forged deep and mutually-beneficial collaborations to bring the city’s exciting, multi-faceted experiences to the Indian consumers. Sentosa is a must-visit attraction for Indian travelers to Singapore. The STB is happy to see Thomas Cook India and Sentosa Development Corporation ink a 3-year strategic agreement to better engage and entice the Indian audiences to visit Sentosa and live up to their passions, enjoying the island’s varied offerings.”

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