Interview: Rami Asaad, Managing Director Darina Holidays
Posted by Vero
Rami Asaad, Managing Director of Darina Holidays has been in the travel and tourism industry for over 22 years. He is experienced and has lived through the major highs and lows of the industry.
In this interview, Rami tells us about his perception of what is happening globally in travel, his beginnings with TravelgateX and his vision for the future of technology in the industry.
Tell us a bit about you, what you do and your company.
Being in the travel industry for 22 years, I’ve seen a lot of ups and down and this experience taught me to be transparent with our partners, which is the most important thing to keep and maintain through good and bad times. As Managing Director of Darina Holidays I can say we have achieved to be the leading Destination Management Company in the Destination – UAE who has been in the market for the past 13 years and has earned its reputation and position by its services and commitments to its partners globally as well as to hotels partners in the destination – UAE, we have always believed in the direct product and that’s what we do by offering 600+ in the UAE which allows us to maintain good customers services, trust by partners & avoid a big hassle in the operations!
What are some of the biggest challenges for your sector right now?
It's Covid which is still around that badly affected the airline industry which is the main engine for travel, and we can see it clearly in some airports around the world. That lack of staff causes travels traffic globally and an increase in air ticket prices due to the fuel price increase, which are unaffordable for some travellers. This slow down the number of flights that are very challenging for us, however, we consider ourselves lucky in the UAE as everything has kept going very smooth and even better!
What do you think are some of the biggest opportunities for the travel industry in 2022?
Taking into consideration the hard 2 year we have gone through in the pandemic and all challenges we had to keep surviving where the travel industry was badly affected, and since the travel sector start to recover I believe the best opportunities we have now is to redesign & shape our business to be more automate , learn from last 2 years challenges to gain the trust again for full recovery very soon!
What is a crazy or out-of-the-box product or technology that you would personally like to?
I truly believe the crypto and blockchain technology is coming up, and it’s just matter of time, so starting thinking to implement them can be an advanced step for the coming future.
What is your favorite thing about working in hospitality/Travel/Tourism?
Besides leisure, it is about connecting with people from different cultures, sharing experiences, ideas, and challenges, and talking about solutions that give us a big hope to move forward during this Covid experience and make us survive.
What does TravelgateX add value to your business?
Well … That’s a sensitive question for me! , I remember when I met with Pedro Camara and his team back in 2016 during ATM through a common friend, at the very first spot I loved the way how those guys are willing to do everything possible, workable easy, and simple, but what has surprised me in 1-2 years later is that there big successful story behind this partnership with TravelgateX, not only about the company & team, but they have passion in what they do in an easy and fast way! , and adding on top of that the friendly way is very much value-added! , after 6 years, I proudly say TravelgateX is the main Technology partner to Darina Holidays as of Today!
What suggestions/challenges would you give to the TeamX?
After the ConX which we attended last May, I have seen a team has one vision, clear direction, working as a family and sparing that positive energy out, they were like a music symphony which very well composed. I tell the TeamX, congrats on the achievements, stay as you are, I believe in the secret of your success aside from the work you do, and I wish you all the best!
What are the plans for 2023? Looking ahead to the next year, what are your top two or three priorities?
We are working heavily to improve our technology to make it more efficient and since we do only our direct contracts within the UAE, we are looking at increasing our portfolio as well as expanding by opening new destinations with our direct contracts!
What advice do you have for young people just entering the travel technology space
It’s simply advice: the future is about technology and reliable partners, look for the right one! …