Fahad Express celebrates 50 years in style with a glittering ‘birthday’ bash

by | Feb 20, 2024 | 0 comments

One of Oman’s first travel agencies celebrated their special milestone in style with a ‘high-flying’ birthday bash

Half a century of adventures

Fahad Express, one of the first travel agencies in the country, yesterday (February 19, 2024) celebrated its 50 years at the Crowne Plaza, Al Qurum. To mark their 50th anniversary, the agency celebrated with a special night replete with travel memories, live entertainment and surprises. The owners and the top officials of Fahad Express, who gathered at the event, noted that they were celebrating “half a century of adventures” as they embarked on “a new chapter of exploration together”.

New identity of Fahad Express

The occasion also saw the unveiling of a new logo in line with the achievement of the 50 years’ milestone. “The market has evolved over the last 50 years and the customer experience of booking their travels has changed.

After understanding the changing needs of customers and viewing market trends and to celebrate 50 years, we created a new identity that reflects a complete and personalised approach,” Jannat Shafaei, Marketing Director at Fahad Express, said.

Modern touch
“The refreshed logo has put in a modern touch while still retaining the essence of the previous one. It is now more bold, yet simple and conveys trust, peace of mind and reliability, which are values that we stand by.

This reinforces our goal to make every experience more special and memorable. Today, I am proud to present you with the new identity of Fahad Express,” Jannat declared.

Trip down memory lane
Back in 1974, Fahad Express, started out with its first office in Muttrah, Corniche, by Fahad Hussein Darwish. 

Fahad Express was primarily handling and was the authorised ticketing agent with most ministries. “Until today, we have managed to maintain the same relationship with the customers over five decades and progressed to other opportunities from Corporates and Holidays,” Hani Ali Mohammed Mirza, Partner and Managing Director, Fahad Express noted.

Key to long-term relationship
Referring to the long-term relationship between Fahad Express and its customers, he said: “The key to this long-term relationship is the flexibility and consistency of our customer service. This has helped build a deep-rooted trust with our customers, who have obliged us with their unwavering loyalty.”

Challenges aplenty
While their relationship with customers has been long, strong and steady, Fahad Express, like other agencies in Oman, and well, the rest of the world, have faced the twin devils of natural calamities as well as market instability. “We have not escaped that. Globally, travel agencies have encountered these challenges, which have affected their businesses.
“We have also faced the brunt of the pandemic, but we are of the firm belief that crises are meant to test us and we should not succumb to such pressures. And in a market like this, it was a simple case of the survival of the fittest and we went through the storm of the pandemic. But we were back with  minimal damages and emerged not just wise, but also gained more strength to face such calamities in the future,” Juliet Irwin, General Manager, Fahad Express, said.

Rediscovered the power of technology
However, the crisis taught travellers another story: how to harness technology to their needs. In fact, many have happily rediscovered the power of technology, especially that of the internet. “It also taught them how to plan their journey from the comfort of their homes. And, therefore, the newly initiated tech-savvy traveller need not visit the travel agencies anymore for their tickets. 
“Thus, in the post-pandemic era, travellers are no longer queuing up before the travel agencies. Passengers make their requests via email or WhatsApp or online portals,” Juliet said, noting that this has also helped reduce the number of branches in and around the country.

50000 passengers annually
Despite the challenges, Fahad Express is doing well. The agency, which has a staff strength of 40 spread over three outlets, caters to a good 50000 passengers annually.

Fahad Express is also busily working on developing and diversifying their holidays and tours’ division focusing on both inbound and outbound tourism.

“We are steadily moving towards developing the online booking tool for our customers. So, we will modernise our approach to business for the new generation, but will still maintain the legacy of the business for the customers who would love it that way,” Juliet added.

Fahad Express is located in the Central Business District and the agency has two other branches, one in Azaiba and the other in Salalah.

Photos: V K Shafeer

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