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Tourism road show begins

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FROM GOD’S OWN COUNTRY: Artistes giving a performance during the launch of Kerala Tourism promotion in Bangalore on Tuesday.
FROM GOD’S OWN COUNTRY: Artistes giving a performance during the launch of Kerala Tourism promotion in Bangalore on Tuesday.

Staff Reporter

Kerala sees 30 per cent drop in foreign tourists this year

BANGALORE: In these recession-hit times, Kerala, a leader in tourism industry, is trying to maintain its leadership position by launching a nationwide road show to attract tourists back to its picturesque locales.

“Due to recession, we have requested the trade bodies to offer discount to travellers and attract more tourists to the State by offering attractive packages. The discount could be as high as 30 per cent,” Tourist Information Officer of Kerala Tourism P.G. Suresh Kumar told presspersons after launching “Dream Season Holidays”, the yearly road shows, in Bangalore on Tuesday.

The road shows will roll into 12 more cities across the country, including Chennai, Hyderabad, Ahmedabad, Surat, Nagpur, Pune, Mumbai, Kolkata and New Delhi. He said that consumer holiday shows have been planned in three cities of Punjab in May.

Having seen a record 16.11 per cent rise the arrival of international tourists during 2008 over the previous year, Kerala has witnessed a fall of about 30 per cent in the category in the first two months of 2009. The State has seen a slight decline in arrival of domestic tourism during the same period.

The months of January and February have seen a 30 per cent decline in arrival of foreign tourists. In all, 5.98 lakh foreign tourists visited Kerala in 2008 with tourists from the United Kingdom leading the pack comprising France, Germany and Sweden among others.

Mr. Suresh Kumar said that Kerala Tourism will be participating in Moscow International Travel and Tourism (MITT) festival. The last time it took part in that festival was seven years ago.

The road show commenced with colourful performances of Mohiniattam, Kathakali, Kaikottikali and Kalaripayattu.

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