Weekly Official e-Newsletter of Nepal Tourism Board
(Printable version)
July 05, 2013
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Nepal promoted in North Indian cities
New ultralight flight starts operation in Pokhara
Air Asia marks first anniversary
The Fleet expansion plan brings cheers to NAC employees

Nepal promoted in North Indian cities

The Nepal Tourism Board (NTB) and Paschimanchal (Western Region) Hotel Association, Pokhara  (PHAP ) jointly organized a 3-city Border Town Sales Mission 2013 with the aim of increasing awareness and educating the North Indian travelers on Nepals tourism products and offerings. The Sales Mission was organized in the cities of U.P. namely Varanasi, Allahabad and Faizabad on 25, 26, 27 June 2013 respectively.

The Nepalese travel trade delegation, with a promotional Slogan of Chilya Pokhara  in the Sales Mission, comprised of a contingent of 30 hoteliers and tour operators from Pokhara and Bhairawa to woo the North Indian travellers to visit Nepal  in this summer holiday season. Nepal along with Pokhara was highlighted as an ideal, cool and a next door destination on the lap of Himalayas for North Indian travelers.

The Nepalese tourism entrepreneurs from Pokhara participated enthusiastically with attractive Pokhara tour packages and offers in the Business to Business meetings in all the cities. Mr. Gobinda Oli, Sr. Officer from Nepal Tourism Board made a comprehensive Nepalese tourism and destination presentation and Mr. Basu Tripathi, Ex-Board Member of Nepal Tourism Board and Mr. Hari Sharma, Presient of PHAP highlighted on why Nepal and especially Pokhara are attractive destinations for North Indian travelers.

The participating Indian tour operators and media expressed their keen interest and  commitment to promote Nepal as the first destination for North Indian travellers.           

With the fast growing economy of Uttar Pradesh, it is a highly potential travel market for the Nepalese tourism industry.

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New ultralight flight starts operation in Pokhara

A new ultralight flights -Pokhara Ultralight Company has started operation in the tourist town of Pokhara.  Earlier, Avia Club has been operating ultralight flights in Pokhara.

The company has acquired three ultralight aircraft with 80 horse power capacity made by Ukraine-based Aeros, according to Dr Prabin Baniya, president of the company. “We have arranged sufficient
The ultralight aircraft with flex wings can carry two persons including a pilot. The planes are designed is such a way that passengers can enjoy views of the lake city and snowy mountains in the northern horizon easily.

The company has invested around Rs 50 million to start ultralight flights. Pokhara Ultralight has prepared four packages for foreign tourists. The company has set a price of 15 minutes package at US$ 90, 20 minutes at $160, 60 minutes at $255 and 90 minutes at $375.

According to Baniya, the company will prepare a special package for domestic tourists during off season.

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Air Asia marks first anniversary

AirAsia X, a Malaysian airline company, marked the first anniversary of its operation in Nepal on July 2.

The airlines served 100,000 travelers within a year of its operation, according to Azran Osman Rani, CEO of AirAisa X. The company had started its flight to and from Nepal on July 3, 2012. To commemorate its first anniversary in Nepal, the company also has announced the addition of one flight to Kathmandu route per week from July 17.

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The Fleet expansion plan brings cheers to NAC employees

Until last year, the anniversary celebration of Nepal Airlines Corporation (NAC) used to be a gloomy affair. Employees used to hurl blames at the management for its failure in expanding fleet of the national flag carrier.

But anniversary celebration was different this year. It seems that the decision to purchase two brand new Airbus A320-200 aircraft has injected optimism into NAC employees and management alike.

Speaking on the 55th anniversary of NAC here on Monday, Senior Pilot Krishna Bikram Chhetri the decision to acquire two new aircraft had lifted their spirits. “We are feeling proud and excited at the thought of flying to Europe again,” he added.
NAC presently has a fleet of two Boeing 757s and a few Twin Otters. But only one Boeing 757 is presently in service as the other is undergoing maintenance. Similarly, it has only one Twin Otter in operation in the domestic sector.

Along with two Airbus A320-200s, NAC is in the process of buying six aircraft for domestic operation from China.
Speaking on the occasion, leaders of NAC employees´ trade unions welcomed the decision to procure new aircraft. They also emphasized the need to enhance management so as to take optimum benefits from fleet expansion.

Referring to the aircraft procurement process, Minister for Culture, Tourism and Civil Aviation Ram Kumar Shrestha, said NAC employees have one last chance to restore the glory of the national flag carrier. “It´s a do or die situation. If we failed to bring about improvements in NAC now, nothing can save it from dying,” said Shrestha.
He said it was with great difficulty that the tourism ministry managed to convince the government and the Employees´ Provident Fund to lend Rs 10 billion to NAC for fleet expansion.

“If NAC is to survive in this competitive market, it should have at least 6-8 aircraft for international operation,” Shrestha said, suggesting the NAC to initiate a process to purchase two wide-body aircraft after the two A320-200s join its fleet.

Tourism secretary Sushil Ghimire said the government was mulling over forming a separate committee for proper management of the national flag carrier. “We also have plans to lease two wide-body planes for NAC in the next three years,” added Ghimire.

Speaking on the occasion, trade union leader Tarani Raj Dahal said NAC should ground the ageing Boeing 757s once the new aircraft join the fleet. “The ageing aircraft are not commercially viable, they consume more fuel,” he added.    (News Courtesy: The Republica)

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Sarad Pradhan     Asst. Editor: Sudhan Subedi

Media Center | Nepal Tourism Board

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