I arrived in New Delhi after spending a relaxing week on the beach in Goa and was picked up by Suri, one of the student volunteers for the India International Hotel, Travel & Tourism Research Conference (IIHTTRC). Suri offered me nothing but exceptional service during the conference and always made sure that I was comfortable and enjoyed my stay.
We stayed at a guesthouse that was on the University campus and upon arrival had a delicious meal brought to our room. There was so much food – 4 different curries, soup, rice, naan bread and dessert. We were spoiled.
The conference kicked off with an opening ceremony where you were greeted by a group of ladies that gave me a tilak (a ritual mark on the forehead made out of red paste as a sign of a greeting) and tossed flower garlands on me as a mark of respect and honour. That small ritual made me feel welcomed and respected as an international delegate which set the tone for the entire conference.
The food was amazing at the conference, offering a wide variety of local cuisine that was prepared by the students at the Banarsidas Chandiwala Institute of Hotel Management & Catering Technology. I was even invited into the kitchen to see how the tandoori chicken and naan bread was prepared.
I quickly found out that I was the only representative from Canada, so the pressure was on to represent CES’s products and services and the tourism industry in Canada. The conference theme was ‘Technology Trends and Innovations’, which was a perfect opportunity for sharing information on how our TechTours™ product can raise awareness of indigenous peoples’ culture and environment in an engaging format. There were over 250 conference delegates representing industry, academics, researchers and students and selected papers were published in the fourth issue of the Indian Journal of Applied Hospitality and Tourism Research, Special Issue: Technology Trends and Innovations.
If you would like to hear about more details on the conference or receive a copy of our paper on how indigenous communities can use technology to attract socially conscious travelers you can call me at 1-877-444-5550 or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Click on the following link to see the conference report: http://www.bcihmct.ac.in/download/Campus/Report%20on%20the%20proceedings%20of%20the%20Conference-2012.pdf.
Written by Amanda Huculak