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Shooting fares fail to dampen Olympics travel

Neither surging fares to London nor an economic slowdown have deterred sport-loving travellers from heading to London for the Olympics, starting today.

business Updated: Jul 26, 2012 21:01 IST
Himani Chandna Gurtoo

Neither surging fares to London nor an economic slowdown have deterred sport-loving travellers from heading to London for the Olympics, starting today.

Travel services have reported a 20-50% rise in bookings, particularly for the event — with travellers wanting to see the games or be part of the festivities on offer in the city during the games. “There has been a 50% increase in bookings for London during the July -August period in comparison to the same period last year,” said Pratik Mazumder, head, marketing, Yatra.com, a travel portal.

“In fact, we have seen an increase of 20% on our UK travel, so far. Sports enthusiasts, high net-worth individuals, corporate clients are the ones who have shown the greatest interest,” said Karan Anand, head, relationships, Cox & Kings.

“High in popularity are the opening ceremony, hockey, tennis and athletics.” he added.

Industry experts say those going to Europe for a holiday are now clubbing the tour with a stopover in London to witness the events at the Olympics while on their way to Scotland, Wales and Ireland.

However, searching for tickets has been a problem for many.

“There is no direct link to find the vendor. Also, the contact number of Thomas Cook — an official vendor — given on the Indian Olympic Association site, is of an individual who has left the job. It left me clueless,” said Abhishek Verma, 28, a software engineer who had earlier planned to watch the games live.

Thomas Cook replied “Thank you for your feedback” and alerted the team for incorrect contact on the Olympics website.