Holiday notice sees rush for travel bookings

Phones of travel agencies and operators were ringing constantly on Sunday.
With the government announcing Eid al Fitr holidays for both public and private sectors, both citizens and expatriates have been busy seeking travel advice.
Holiday has been declared from June 24 to June 29.
While a number of expats plan to visit their families back home for the Eid, many Omani families are looking at travelling abroad, especially to some destinations in Southeast Asia such as Thailand, Singapore or Malaysia.
Some also plan to visit some local destinations.
While the travel agencies have been busy attending to calls or visitors since morning, post-iftar they were inundated with calls or those enquiring about holiday packages.
Many agencies were open till late night. “All our counters have been busy handling calls after the holiday announcement,” Sunil Prabhaker, CEO, Travel Group of Travel City and Travel Point, told the Observer.
“Within minutes of the announcement (holiday), I had 15 bookings, including new or date changes to the existing bookings,” said Risvan Sidhik, another travel consultant.
Most of the travel agents that the Observer spoke to said Bangkok, Tbilisi (Georgia) and Bosnia were the top three destinations that offered inexpensive holidays followed by Sri Lanka and Malaysia.
Europe tour packages too are in demand. “Some Omanis and expats prefer to fly to European countries,” said a leading travel agent.
Well before the beginning of the holy month, travel agents had worked out packages that suited average pockets.