Sailing through rough waters
Breaking the cycle of monotonous back-toback sightseeing itineraries, the presentday Indian has by and large, evolved from a tourist to a traveller. Curiosity, social media and an increasing disposable income have all contributed to the growing number of Indians who travel beyond the country but what is interesting is the choice of destination. Places like Croatia, Bulgaria and Hungary that were practically unheard of to the average Indian have become the talk of the town while Vietnam, Cambodia and Indonesia have figured as some of the popular short-haul destinations. The change in choice and mind-set has resulted in India becoming a sought-after market for outbound travel with new national tourism offices either setting up new branches or expanding their network. This goes hand-in-hand for air travel as several international airlines foray into the Indian skies. However, the recent policies are a blow for outbound and tour operators expect a dip in business. But with increasing FIT numbers and accessibility of information through technology, the segment might just hold its ground.