An Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry of India (ASSOCHAM) survey has revealed that over 55 per cent potential tourists have preferred North Indian tourist destinations to usher in New Year 2011.
The survey of 3,500 tourists was conducted in 10 major cities -- Delhi, Mumbai, Bangalore, Chennai, Kolkata, Jaipur, Chandigarh, Lucknow, Thiruvananthapuram and Ahmedabad. Almost 35 per cent of potential travellers said they preferred to visit coastal destinations like Goa, Puducherry, Kerala, Thiruvananthpuram and Rameshwaram.
Ten per cent desired to visit areas like Ooty, Mahabaleshwar, Jaipur and Mysore.
Among the North Indian destinations favoured by those surveyed include Shimla, Kinnaur, Lahaul, Spiti, Chamba, Kangra, Mandi, Nainital, Kullu, Manali, Mussoorie, Dalhousie, Kufri, Kashmir Valley, Chandigarh, Panchkula and Udaipur.
ASSOCHAM said hotels and restaurants in these tourist hot-spots are recording a massive business boom during the New Year festive season owing to the improved economic situation in the country.
Hoteliers said the harsh winter this year in Europe has also helped India record an improved performance this December as more foreigners are flocking to India instead of Europe where December has traditionally been one of the busiest times of the year for the tourism industry.
Releasing the findings of the survey, ASSOCHAM secretary general, D.S. Rawat said the steady increase in hotel occupancy mostly in North India and other traditional tourist destinations has also helped by the festival season when more people go for holidays. “The festive season and an increase in domestic tourism should be given credit for this surge in hotel occupancy and the hotels are cashing in on the increased spending power of the individuals and buoyant festive mood,” he said.
ASSOCHAM said the upsurge in number of tourists has resulted in 35-40 per cent increase in tariffs for hotel accommodations. “Food and beverage costs are also running up by nearly 20-25 per cent. Almost all hotel owners have boosted their prices by significant margin as the tourists jostle to enjoy the New Year fever,” Mr. Rawat added.
ASSOCHAM said the Central and State governments have also realised the significant revenue realisation potential of the tourism sector and are giving increasing priority to the industry.