My experience of managing a travel incentive for Indian travellers.
As the owner of a local tour operator specialised in the Indian market, we bring a lot of Indians to Amsterdam and the Netherlands, and sometimes even Paris. We mainly do corporate travel incentive trips and also arrange customised packages for FIT’s. We know Indians are not the same as any other traveller. They require a little more attention and flexibility in their itineraries to be able to switch things around at short notice. I know from experience, there is no point in trying to set a tight itinerary for groups coming from India. Rather, we prefer to discuss options at every stage of the trip and let the travellers make an informed decision.
We know Indians are passionate about visiting new countries and we ensure that we give them a wholesome experience when they visit Amsterdam & The Netherlands. On all our tours, we ensure that we hire knowledgeable and experienced guides who, besides the commentary, will always point out interesting things to see, such as windmills, canals, nice buildings, museums or churches.
We realise that Indian tourists come from a culture that is very different to European culture and first time travellers are sometimes overwhelmed by how the cities work. For e.g., in Amsterdam, they have to watch the bicycles! We try and make the transition as smooth as possible for them by giving tips and advice continuously.
As a travel professional who works almost exclusively with Indian groups, we ensure that the travellers have an awesome experience visiting our country and we specifically take care of the following points:
- 1: Food is important! We always ensure that we select restaurants that are tried and tested and continuously take feedback from the diners and pass it on to the restaurateurs. We discuss the menus in advance and ensure that there is variety everyday.
- 2: Always include a souvenir: The cost is minimal but the value of the gift is exponentially higher!
- 3: Patience is a virtue: With this I mean, let them wander around and take it all in! These are experiences that they’ll cherish for a lifetime. Don’t rush them from one attraction to another. Pick the top must see attractions and ensure that you cover them and if there is time, discuss some other options with them to see what would interest and excite them.
- 4: Shopping for souvenirs & gifts: An inherent part of the Indian culture is to bring back gifts for family and friends. Do include at least a half day for this and bring them to bargain shops.
I do hope you’ll get in touch with us for your next corporate travel incentive to The Netherlands. I look forward to showing you my country and sharing our culture with you…and hopefully, learn interesting things about your culture too!
By Wouter de Vries, owner at Damrep