(MENAFN- Bangladesh Monitor) Dhaka: The 18th edition of the popular international tourism fair Dhaka Travel Mart began at the Ball Room of Pan Pacific Sonargaon Hotel on May 18.
Organised by The Bangladesh Monitor, a leading travel and tourism publication, the three-day fair is supported by the private sector airline Air Astra as the title sponsor, while US-Bangla Airlines and Eastern Bank Ltd have joined as the premium sponsor and the banking partner respectively.
State Minister for Cultural Affairs K M Khalid formally inaugurated the fair as the Chief Guest.
In his inaugural address, the state minister said,“To truly tap the tourism potential of the country, domestic tourism must be made attractive to visitors. For this purpose, the cultural affairs and tourism ministries must work together. Archeological sites always stand as key attraction to travellers all over the world and the same can happen in Bangladesh.”
He further mentioned,“The cultural affairs ministry has 570 archeological establishments under its gazette. However, restoration works to make these centuries old sites are yet to take place. An MoU for this purpose is in talks between the cultural affairs and tourism ministry of the country.”
“Also, amid the dollar crisis this country is suffering from, a large amount of foreign currency can be earned by the country if it manages to attract more foreign tourists as millions of visitors are willing to visit the renowned archeological sites Bangladesh boasts,” the state minister concluded.
The inaugural ceremony was also addressed by Md Mokammel Hossain, Secretary, Ministry of Civil Aviation and Tourism; Md Rahat Anwar, Chairman, Bangladesh Parjatan Corporation; Air Vice Marshal M Mafidur Rahman, Chairman, Civil Aviation Authority of Bangladesh; Haznah Md Hashim, High Commissioner of Malaysia to Bangladesh; Imran Asif, CEO, Air Astra; Mahbub Jahan, Director, Strategic Planning and Transformation, US-Bangla Airlines; Ziaul Karim, Head of Communications and External Affairs, EBL and Kazi Wahidul Alam, Editor, The Bangladesh Monitor.
In the opening remarks, Kazi Wahidul Alam, Editor, The Bangladesh Monitor, said, "Our main objective is to bring together the stakeholders and provide a platform for their mutual interaction to facilitate the overall development of Bangladesh tourism. Dhaka Travel Mart is an opportunity for the sellers to showcase and promote their travel products and services, while buyers can choose their needed services directly.”
Wahidul Alam also said 50 organisations representing national tourism organisations, airlines, tour operators, hotels, resorts, travel agencies, online travel agencies, financial institutions, and healthcare service providers, among others, from home and abroad are showcasing their products and services in 65 stalls and seven pavilions at the fair. The participating countries are - India, Nepal, Malaysia, Thailand, KSA, Oman, UAE, and host Bangladesh.
Visitors during 3-days of the fair can enjoy attractive offers from the participating organisations including discounts on air tickets and hotel accommodation, tour packages among many others.
For instance, Air Astra is offering holiday packages comprising air tickets and hotel accommodation starting from BDT 10490. After purchasing these packages, customers can get a further BDT 500 cash back. Also, 20 per cent discount on air tickets is available to all domestic destinations. EBL platinum cardholders can get further additional 20 per cent cash back.
Us Bangla is also offering BDT 500 discount on packages per person. The more number of people travelling in a group, the higher the discount amount will be. Also, the airline is offering 10 per cent discount internationally and 15 per cent domestically. Moreover, under the packages, customers can get air tickets and two night hotel accommodation in destinations like Cox's Bazar, Maldives and Bangkok.
NOVOAIR is also offering packages to Cox's Bazar at BDT 26000 per couple. The package includes couple air tickets and two night hotel stay free. Also, 15 per cent discount is available on air tickets to all domestic routes.
Furthermore, the frequent flyers, meaning SMILES members, can get 100 bonus miles with every purchase of air ticket at the fair.
The fair can be visited every day from 10 am to 8 pm till May 20, 2023 on payment of an entry fee of BDT 50 per person.
Visitors can win attractive door prizes in the raffle draw- to be held every day- including airline tickets to Cairo, Dubai, Male, Bangkok, Kolkata, hotel accommodation and complimentary lunch/dinner at star hotels, among others.