Kerala

All is going good for Responsible Tourism units

Few tourist faces grace the interiors of Kumarakom or Vaikom these days as the COVID-19 outbreak has joined the growing list of challenges crippling tourism in Kerala over the last one year. Yet the period witnessed the largest inflow of tourists, mostly foreigners, to experience the life in its villages.

As per estimates, the units under the Responsible Tourism (RT) Mission in Kerala recorded a sharp uptick in its revenue to ₹23.07 crore in 2019-20 as against ₹4.98 crore and ₹4.51 crore in the previous two fiscals. The total number of guests, who visited rural Kerala under the experience packages offered by the agency during the period, stood at 49,017 including 32,433 foreigners.

Meanwhile, the expenditure incurred by the agency during the period was ₹2.17 crore.

A detailed analysis of the figures suggested that December 2019, typically a peak tourism season for the State, clocked the highest monthly income of ₹2.75 crore followed by September 2019 with ₹2.34 crore.

The monthly turnover, however, began to recede from February this year onward and hit its lowest point of ₹67.96 lakh in March with the viral outbreak turning a global pandemic.

140 packages

The latest figures -- a huge improvement over the targeted income of ₹15 crore for the period, has come as a major boost to the RT Mission.

“Among the 140 experiential packages, 40 have already been implemented. The packages have been designed to benefit the 17,008 traditional art and crafts units registered with us,” said K.Roopesh Kumar, Coordinator, RT Mission.

Considering that the global travel will remain grounded for some more months following the post COVID-19 period, the Mission is now planning to conduct virtual tours to the State’s villages through its online platform.

Plans are also afoot to launch a massive campaign by focussing on the domestic travel community including Keralites and school groups from other States.

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Printable version | May 8, 2021 11:21:20 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/kerala/all-is-going-good-for-responsible-tourism-units/article31264397.ece

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