ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING
Mr. Tillak Wickramasinghe, the Proprietor of Skyways was elected as the President of the IATA Agents Association of Sri Lanka (IATA – AASL).

He was elected for the post, during the 28th Annual General Meeting of the IATA Agents Association of Sri Lanka (IATA-AASL), which was held on 26th May, 2016 in Nairobi, Kenya.

Apart from, Wickramsinghe’s election as President for the year 2016/2017 period, Mr. Channe Wijemanne, Director / Chief Executive Officer of George Steuarts Travels Ltd was also elected as the Vice President.

In the meantime, the following persons were elected to the Executive Council of IATA-AASL for the period of 2016 / 17 and those are Mr. Nishantha Senaveratne, General Manager of Aitken Spence Travels (Pvt) Ltd, Mr. Suresh Mendis, Chief Executive Officer of Classic Travels (Pvt) Ltd, Mr. Rajiv Guruswamy, Chief Executive Officer of Delair Travels (Pvt) Ltd, Mr. Faris Deen, Chief Executive Officer of Gabo Travels (Pvt) Ltd, Mr. Niranjan Dalpethado, Manager of Hayleys Travels & Tours (Pvt) Ltd, Mr. Riza Ahamat, Director/ General Manager of Hemas Travels (Pvt) Ltd, Mr. Trevor Rajaratnam, Chief Executive Officer of Travel 7 (Pvt) Ltd, Mr. M.L.C. Fernando, Managing Director of Lando Travels (Pvt) Ltd, , Mr. Rimzi Nazeer, Managing Partner of Skymark Travels (Pvt) Ltd, Mr. Duminda Lowe, Managing Director of 02nd Chance Travels (Pvt) Ltd, Mr. Rizmi Reyal, Chairman/ Managing Director of The Traveller Global (Pvt) Ltd, Mr. Saman Premakumara, Managing Director of Travel World (Pvt) Ltd and Mr. Jude Condrad, Managing Director of Himpras Tours (Pvt) Ltd as the Immediate Past President. The AGM was followed by cocktails and a dinner reception at the Hilton Nairobi with the presence of the sponsors -M/s Amadeus Lanka (Pvt) Ltd, Qatar Airways &Asian Alliance General Insurance Limited.

PRESENTATION BY VFS CENTER & US EMBASSY
A presentation was made by the Embassy of United States in Sri Lanka to introduce the “Interview Waiver Program” on 08th June, 2016 at the Auditorium of Sri Lanka Institute of Tourism & Hotel Management (SLITHM).

ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING
Mr. Channe Wijemanne, Director / Chief Executive Officer of George Steuart Travel Ltd was elected as the President of the IATA Agents Association of Sri Lanka (IATA – AASL).

He was elected to the post, at the 29th Annual General Meeting of the IATA Agents Association of Sri Lanka (IATA-AASL), which was held on 19th May, 2017 in Muscat, Oman.

Apart from, Wijemanne’s election as President for the year 2017/2018 period, Mr. Rizmi Reyal, Chairman/ Managing Director of The Traveller Global (Pvt) Ltd was elected as the Vice President.

In addition, the following persons were elected to the Executive Council of IATA-AASL for the period of 2017/ 18 and those are Mr. Nishantha Senaveratne, General Manager of Aitken Spence Travels (Pvt) Ltd, Mr. S. Paramanathan, Managing Director of Atlas Lanka (Pvt) Ltd, Mr. Suresh Mendis, Chief Executive Officer of Classic Travels (Pvt) Ltd, Mr. Faris Deen, Chief Executive Officer of Gabo Travels (Pvt) Ltd, Mr. Niranjan Dalpethado, General Manager of Hayleys Travels & Tours (Pvt) Ltd, Mr. Riza Ahamat, Director/ General Manager of Hemas Travels (Pvt) Ltd, Mr. Jude Condrad, Managing Director of Himpras Tours (Pvt) Ltd, Mr. Trevor Rajaratnam, Chief Executive Officer of Travel 7 (Pvt) Ltd, Mr. M.L.C. Fernando, Managing Director of Lando Travels (Pvt) Ltd, , Mr. Rimzi Nazeer, Managing Partner of Skymark Travels (Pvt) Ltd, Mr. Duminda Lowe, Managing Director of 02nd Chance Travels (Pvt) Ltd, and Mr. Tillak Wickramasinghe, the Proprietor of Skyways as the Immediate Past President.

The AGM was followed by cocktails and a dinner reception at the Al Falaj Hotel with the presence of the sponsors -M/s Amadeus Lanka (Pvt) Ltd, Oman Air &Fairfirst Insurance Limited.

In his address to the gathering of members, Wijemanne, thanked all members for the trust placed in him in an era where travel was evolving at a great pace. He pledged to work closely with all industry partners so as to enable all stake holders to have a greater degree of seamlessness and efficiency in executing their day to day work.


WORKSHOP ON NEWGEN ISS AND IATA CUSTOMER PORTAL
A workshop on NewGen ISS and IATA Customer Portal was conducted by IATA, Singapore on the 28th February, 2018 at the Auditorium of Sri Lanka Institute of Tourism & Hotel Management (SLITHM).

A total of 65 member companies attended this presentation.

Mr. Azhar Azahari- Regional Business Development and Area Manager- IATA delivering the welcome address
Mr. IndrajithVitharana- Assistant Manager- Global Delivery Centre- IATA explaining the NewGen ISS

PRESENTATION BY VFS GLOBAL
A presentation was made by VFS Global on 29th March, 2018 covering the following topics:-

  • Visa submission processes for different countries at VFS Global operated Visa Application Centres.
  • Visa updates.
  • Do’s, Don’ts of application process & Guidance on application procedures
  • Services/Value Added Services offered at VFS Global operated Visa Application Centers

It was held at the UK-Australia Visa Application Centre, Colombo.
This presentation was attended by 54 member companies.

IVS Lanka (Pvt) Ltd
The officials of High Commission of India had a presentation to the membership of IATA-AASL to brief on thegeneral guidelines for Indian visas and implementation of biometrics to the members of the Association on the 02nd June, 2018 at the Auditorium of the Ceylon Chamber of Commerce.

  • It was informed that biometric data capture is mandatory for all visa applicants. This will be implemented for all clients of travel agents from 01st June, 2018.
  • Biometrics will be valid of 05 years provided the passport is not renewed.
  • The visa applications can be submitted by the travel agent and the applicant can come within the day to provide biometrics. The biometrics of the clients of travel agents are accepted till 5.30 pm.
  • A format to be prepared by IVS Lanka, which will indicate the LKAC no and the passport no. with the seal of IVS. This can be given to the client to obtain security clearance at IVS Lanka. Also the clients need to be advised to go to the 02nd floor (dedicated area for travel agents) of IVS Lanka to submit their biometrics.
  • If the applicant does not turn up within the day, they do not have to re-apply however a new LKAC no will be issued. An additional day for visa processing will be taken if biometrics are not submitted on the same day as it takes a day to process this data.

The format of the slip for biometrics (which has to be given to the clients for biometric submission).

PRESENTATION by AMADEUS LANKA
The officials of High Commission of India had a presentation to the membership of IATA-AASL to brief on thegeneral guidelines for Indian visas and implementation of biometrics to the members of the Association on the 02nd June, 2018 at the Auditorium of the Ceylon Chamber of Commerce.

Mr. Sébastien Gibergues, Vice President- Online Travel Asia Pacific educated the membership on the benefits/ implications of these new systems/procedures.

The presentation was attended by more than 100 senior managers/decision makers from member companies of IATA-AASL & TAASL as Amadeus as a leading provider of travel technology is a major partner of travel agencies.