TravTalk - India
Tourism & ties
Rupinder Brar, Addl DG, Union Ministry of Tourism, talks about plans to promote tourism and relations with neighbouring countries.
As per the data from Trip Advisor, travellers in South Asia, South East Asia and the neighbouring countries are showing a lot of interest in India. “It is very hearting that research data suggests that in times to come, India is going to be a highly favoured destination,” said Rupinder Brar, Additional Director General, Ministry of Tourism, Government of India.
“I think it is a very exciting time for India as the visa regime has been announced. Previously we were issuing tourist visas from 15 November, but now it has gone full throttle with 156 countries on e-visa list and regular commercial flights starting from 27 March. We have been in contact with the civil aviation and airport authorities to make sure that all travellers
arriving in India have a smooth experience at the airports,” she added.
Promotional strategies and upcoming events
Commenting on the government’s promotional strategies and upcoming events, she said, “We have been reaching out through social media and working through our trade and stakeholders to spread the message that ' India is ready to welcome you back'. We have also reached out to the embassies in the countries that are top source markets to spread the message.
“ITM is slated to take place with IATO in the near future,” she said. Regular visa regime
Regarding visa, she said, “On 15 November we introduced a special visa system and announced that tourists were entitled to free visa. In fact, 500,000 free visas were issued for a month. However,
with 15 March the regular visa regime has resumed and travellers can apply for long term visas and come visit our beautiful country.” Infrastructure
Infrastructure plays a crucial role in tourism. Brad said that there are two components; infrastructure in terms of making sure the tourist facilities are available, and connectivity that drives tourism. “We have been working with the ministry of civil aviation to provide viability gap funding for certain prominent tourism tools,” she said. The Buddhist circuit in India has gained a massive boost with the addition of the Kushinagar airport, which is an airport with the capacity to receive international flights. India now has 140 airports, and 20 of them are international airports. There will be a number of airports being added to India as we move forward, she added. Building relations with neighbouring countries
As most of the borders have either reopened or are reopening, building relationship with neighbouring countries is pivotal. “India has had great relations with its neighbours, and we look forward to leveraging those relationships as we create tours for foreign guests, who will not only visit India, but also our neighbouring countries and have a holistic experience of the sub-continent. Additionally, we look forward to creating itineraries that will enable tourists to travel seamlessly from country to country,” she said.
We look forward to creating itineraries that will enable tourists to travel seamlessly from country to country