The Kanoo Travel Call Centre, Manama, has handled 80,000 calls since its launch in July 2003.
Of these, 60 per cent were from outside Bahrain, said Kanoo Travel executive board chairman and Y B A Kanoo Group deputy chairman Mubarak Kanoo.
“This reflects Bahrain’s growing position as the travel hub of the Middle East,” he told the GDN.
“There has been a 76pc growth in the number of calls and 88pc growth in sales this year over the same time last year.
“The center has established itself as a toll-free, 24-hour contact point for seamless travel services covering Bahrain, the UAE and Saudi Arabia.”
Mr Kanoo said the center was staffed mainly by Bahrainis. “Of nine staff, seven are Bahrainis. Their number will increase to 17 by the end of the year.”
“We shall be happy to provide them with training so they can play a more meaningful role in the growth of Bahrain’s travel and tourism industry.”
The center mainly handles calls relating to air travel enquiries and holiday requests, said Mr Kanoo.
“A large number of people who travel abroad call the center if they want to change bookings or require travel assistance with holiday destinations,” he added.
“As our computers in the Middle East are linked to each other, any booking made at any of the Kanoo and American Express offices in the region can be retrieved at the Bahrain call center.
Mr Kanoo said the call center was the main service center for three leading exhibitions in the country – the Middle East Oil Show, the Garden Show and the Jewellery Arabia.
The call center was primarily created to cater to the needs of the group’s corporate and retail customer portfolio and the growing need to offer travel services 24 hours a day, said Mr Kanoo.
“The investment in call center-based operations is further justified by the volume of calls and enquiries received during public holidays, weekends and after-office hours,” he added.
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