Daily Mirror (Sri Lanka)

Tourism bets on digital nomads for recovery

■ „Cabinet nod received to promote SL as an attractive destinatio­n for digital nomads ■ „Promotiona­l programme to be rolled out by SLTDA ■ „Govt. to introduce long-term visa category for digital tourists


Tourism Ministry this week received the Cabinet nod to promote Sri Lanka as a favourable destinatio­n for ‘digital nomads’, an effort that would assist the hard-hit industry to steer though the new normal.

The Cabinet approved a proposal furnished by Tourism Minister Prasanna Ranatunga to launch a promotiona­l programme to pitch the island nation for digital nomads, which involves the use of digital tools to prepare, organise, control and enjoy the travel experience.

The programme to lure travellers in this emerging segment will be rolled out by Sri Lanka Tourism Promotion Bureau (SLTPB).

In a bid to kick off the initiative, the government announced its decision to introduce a long-term visa category for digital tourists.

Sri Lanka was recently recognised as one of the top destinatio­ns for digital nomads, emerging second in Club Med’s index of the best places and countries around the world to become a digital nomad.

According Club Med, that allocated a score of 238 out of 320, Sri Lanka was ranked high in the index due to its comparativ­ely low living costs, average temperatur­es of 30°C along with ample activities and landmarks for visitors to enjoy, and a beautiful working backdrop of lush green mountains, coral reefs and powdery sand, which combine to offer a great remote working experience. Commenting on the potential of the upcoming segment, the SLTDA said the free and independen­t nature of travellers combined with their long travel stay patterns in one destinatio­n makes digital tourism a lucrative market to pursue.

“Sri Lanka is poised to be the perfect post pandemic destinatio­n with its wide-open spaces and nature-based attraction­s.

After experienci­ng prolonged lockdowns and travel restrictio­ns, people are embracing the ‘work from anywhere’ concept with the requiremen­ts being a picturesqu­e setting, cultural experience­s, adventure and good Wi-fi connection”, said SLTDA Chairperso­n Kimarli Fernando in a statement yesterday.

She added that the island nation is positioned well to promote the ‘work from your own tropical paradise’ concept and Sri Lanka Tourism recognisin­g this is facilitati­ng the expansion of the digital nomad market as part of its sustainabl­e strategies.

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