Yeti Airlines/Tara Air celebrated the acquisition of the new Viking Series 400 Twin Otters by entering into a co-branding partnership with the Great Himalaya Trail (GHT), an organisation dedicated to developing safe and sustainable adventure tourism throughout Nepal.
The new aircraft livery besides supporting familiar green and gold colours of Tara Air also carries newly designed GHT logo. The addition of two new Viking DHC- 400 Twin Otter aircraft, equipped with the most modern avionics in the STOL category reflects the airline’s commitment to safety and support to improving Nepal’s tourism industry. Tara Air plans to gradually replace all their STOL aircraft with new Viking Series 400 Twin Otters.
Minister for Culture, Tourism and Civil Aviation Kripasur Sherpa said, “We have to recognise the efforts being made to promote tourism by the private sector. We appreciate the contributions being made by Tara Air and Yeti Airlines who are connecting and promoting even the most remote areas in Nepal.”
Stating that even after the natural tragedy, Nepal has huge potential for tourism, he said, “If we can promote and attract just one per cent of population of China and India to travel to Nepal, we won’t have required rooms or infrastructure to handle them.”
He also stated the government was looking at ways to provide relief to the tourism industry, which has suffered after massive quakes of April and May.
GHT forms an extensive network of trails across the hills of Nepal and is a reflection of improved quality and diversity of Nepal’s tourism products. The development of GHT is supported by Samarth-Nepal Market Development Programme (Samarth-NMDP) with funding from UK Aid through DFID Nepal. The route network of Yeti Airlines/Tara Air offers tourists access to all gateways along GHT.
The partnership reflects the commitment to improve passenger standards and safety specifications that form a real example of the quality of Nepal’s new tourism products.
Gail Marzetti, head of DFID Nepal, also said, “UK Aid has been supporting tourism in Nepal for the last 15 years and our objective is to bring jobs and livelihood to communities up in the high hills. We have been investing in small business like home stays, teahouse restaurants and some infrastructure such as trails, bridges and signage to make it easier for tourists to have access and go up to the most difficult areas.
This aircraft also gives access to the main entry points of the GHT and it is nice to see the private sector investing in tourism and bringing safety and new money to these areas.”
Umesh Chandra Rai, CEO of Yeti Airlines/Tara Air, said the partnership and branding idea are to promote more than just the Everest and Annapurna regions.
“We want to attract tourists from new markets and spread adventure and trekking to other areas like the Kanchenjunga, Dolpo, Jumla and others as we fly to all these areas and so we are grateful to DFID and all partners for their promotion of Nepal.”