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New India flights provide new opportunity for £2.9billion tourism industry

Manchester Airport (Credit Shutterstock.com)

Cumbria Tourism is heralding next week’s introduction of new non-stop flights from Mumbai to Manchester Airport as a great opportunity for Cumbria’s £2.9billion visitor economy.

The first Jet Airways service linking the Indian sub-continent with Northern England will arrive in Manchester next Monday 5 November 2018.  Flying five times a week, it’s hoped the new connection will both support trade and encourage more leisure visitors from the world’s fastest growing economy.

Cumbria Tourism’s Managing Director Gill Haigh is one of those attending a special VIP event at Manchester Airport to mark the inaugural flight on Monday. She believes the Lake District and Cumbria will have a huge appeal to potential new visitors heading to Northern England from one of India’s major cities.

Gill says, “Research carried out by our colleagues at VisitBritain has shown that Indian visitors are attracted to culture, heritage and the natural beauty of the landscape – qualities which Cumbria has in abundance. With the lure of two UNESCO World Heritage Sites and a world-class reputation as a visitor destination, we have a compelling message to tell. Together with new and expanded services from the USA later in 2019, it’s an exciting time for developing some of our most important overseas markets!”

Ahead of the launch, Cumbria Tourism has been working closely with a range of organisations to help nurture new relationships with potential new Indian visitors. For instance, Cumbria Tourism’s PR team co-ordinated a visit for key influencers and journalists in conjunction with VisitBritain India, including a content producer who was developing a video for Jet Airways’ in-flight entertainment.

The Cumbria Tourism team has also recently taken part in two large-scale events in Manchester to meet with Indian tour operators and overseas tourism contacts face-to-face, and is working on a new marketing campaign alongside Marketing Manchester to make the most of the new flights. The news comes ahead of the ICC Cricket World Cup which takes place in England and Wales next year and is expected to be a massive draw for Indian sports fans.

The first Jet Airways flight from Mumbai is due to touch-down in Manchester on the morning of Monday 5 November.

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