Durga Puja boosts tourism

West Ben­gal has geared up to at­tract the in­bound mar­ket and domestic tourists. This was wit­nessed dur­ing the re­cently con­cluded Durga Puja in Oc­to­ber, where the state pro­moted it­self to the in­bound and domestic seg­ment.

TravTalk - India - - Analysis -

MEGHA PAUL Ac­cord­ing

to Rachh­pal Singh, Tourism Min­is­ter, West Ben­gal, the State had ear­lier hosted road­shows in Bengaluru and Mum­bai be­sides or­gan­is­ing cam­paigns in the US and Canada. Ef­forts have been on to woo tourists from Bangkok, Sin­ga­pore, Kuala Lumpur and from the neigh­bour­ing coun­tries with the help of var­i­ous cen­tral and for­eign agen­cies. “Though profit mak­ing is not the tar­get of the state government, more tourists will open up sources of in­come, for many peo­ple here,” Singh added. In or­der to show­case Durga Puja, the West Ben­gal Tourism De­part­ment had re­cruited tourist po­lice on a tem­po­rary ba­sis to guide vis­i­tors.

All th­ese ef­forts also led to a spurt in the book­ings of the in­bound tour op­er­a­tors. Says Sham Lal Soni, Chair­man, West Ben­gal the Ganges and river cruise con­nect­ing Belur Math, ex­ceed­ingly well dur­ing the pe­riod. Talk­ing about the in­crease in the num­ber of book­ings for the Durga Puja pe­riod, Rod­ney Kaypee, Gen­eral Man­ager, Ho­tel Hin­dusthan In­ter­na­tional, Kolkata re­veals, “This year, we saw an in­crease of 40 per cent over last year in terms of ho­tel stays. One of the fac­tors was the long Durga Puja hol­i­days en­com­pass­ing two week­ends. The over­all in­crease in oc­cu­pancy dur­ing the Puja days was nearly 12 per cent.” Ac­cord­ing to Kaypee, the busi­ness dur­ing the Durga Puja was largely domestic FITs coming in from satel­lite towns.

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