tourism: Tourism looks to spread its winds post pandemic upheaval

tourism: Tourism looks to spread its winds post pandemic upheaval

Tourism has been one of the hardest-hit industries across the globe, and the industry in India was no exception. A study conducted by the Ministry of Tourism and Culture showed significant depletion of incomes across the sector. Tourism direct gross value added (TDGVA) for 2020-2021 fell 42.8% in quarter 1, 15.5% in Q-2 and 1.1% in Q-3, Minister of Tourism and Culture G Kishan Reddy told ET.

But the industry is headed for a comeback, as the vaccination programme is calming the fears of both domestic and foreign tourists. Domestic travel has been resuming in the country and the tourist destinations are receiving a large number of visitors. To woo foreign tourists, the ministry has announced that the first 500,000 e-visas issued until March 2022 will be free, and the e-visa facility will be extended to 169 countries.

International charters have already been given the go-ahead from October 15, and visitors on tourist visas will be allowed on scheduled or bubble flights from those by regular planes from November 15.”Our ranking in the Travel & Tourism Competitiveness Index of the World Economic Forum has improved from 52 in 2015 to 34 in 2019 among 140 odd countries,” said Reddy. New tourism “clusters” are being developed, around destinations like Somnath and Kaziranga .

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