India to expect boost in foreign tourism this Christmas

The boost has been attributed to the new visa-on-arrival rules

Air India Express
Air India Express

India’s foreign tourism industry is expecting a 10-15% boost this December – New Year season.

The prediction has been described as a silver lining for the country by sister-publication Arabian Business.

Tour operators Arabian Business spoke to attributed the rise to an attractively weaker rupee to UK, European and US visitors, as well as the relaxation on visa regulations.

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Tourist arrivals to India saw a 26% jump during October 2019 with 944,233 compared to the previous month's 750,514. 

“This year is looking much better in terms of both actual bookings and enquiries,” Indian Association of Tour Operators (IATO)'s president, Pronab Sarkar told Arabian Business.

“With the reduction in visa fee and GST (goods and services tax), we expect a good increase in foreign tourist arrivals this Christmas-New Year season,” Sarkar added.

The optimism extended to occupany rates, where Heritage Village Resort and Spa's general manager, Guitry Velho told Arabian Business that: “For these two months – December and January – we have seen a growth of 25% in bookings by guests from UK alone,”

India in 2018 faced a number of hurdles including economic slowdown, pollution concerns and cataclysmic flooding in Kerala.

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