Sri Lanka Tourism Promotion Bureau focuses on India as key market for 2019
In an effort to ramp up Indian outbound tourists visiting Sri Lanka, Sri Lanka Tourism Promotional Bureau (SLTPB) recently announced free visa on arrival to visitors from India and 47 other countries. In order to increase number of arrivals from India the Sri Lanka Tourism Promotion Bureau has planned rigorous tourist promotion campaigns.
Sri Lanka Tourism Promotion Bureau SLTPB has also collaborated with SriLankan Airlines; The Hotels Association of Sri Lanka (THASL) and inbound tour operators has introduced attractive packages, specifically targeting India. The package offered includes discounted airfare, accommodation, transport and more, ranging from 30 % to 60%. This package is unique to India and can be availed across Sri Lankan Airlines’ network covering 12 cities in India with 123 weekly flights.
Hon Minister of Tourism mentioned that with the latest free visa on arrival policy the destination is all geared up to welcome more Indians to Sri Lanka. In support to the Indian travel industry we shall be frequently visiting India support and welcome the Indian travelers in huge numbers and experience the diverse & multifarious tourism facets that Sri Lanka has to offer. He further added The Sri Lanka Tourism Promotion Bureau is banking on the Ramayana Circuit and a few other common cultural Indian heritage sites to boost the number of travellers from India and increase the growth by two folds.
The five tour packages to Sri Lanka range from a combination of stays in Colombo, Kandy, Nuwara Eliya, Dambulla, Sigiriya and South Coast with multiple options to suit any budget. These offers will be valid for stays from June 10, 2019 to September 30, 2019 and can be availed through the travel agents network in India.
Mr. Yasantha De Silva Minister (Commercial) discussed about the various key segments that the destination would focus on in 2019-2020 like the weddings, Films, FITs etc. He added the new campaign is designed to focus on the key cities in India thus ensuring a through product and client understanding.
Mr. S P Mohan Manager Tamil Nadu & Karnataka SriLankan Airlines added SriLankan Airlines has a huge presence in South India, operating 53 flights a week to 4 cities in Tamil Nadu namely Chennai, Coimbatore, Trichy and Madurai, 14 weekly flights to Bangalore and daily flights to Trivandrum and Kochi. We have experienced a market growth of 12% to Sri Lanka compared 2017/18 vs 2018/19. With our daily frequencies from most cities, we have shown our commitment to Sri Lanka tourism product. We have also been witnessing significant growth in group travel in terms of MICE, Pilgrim Tours and latest segment being destination wedding.
India has accounted for 18.2 percent, which is 424,887 arrivals in 2018, an impeccable 10.5 percent hike from last year. Sri Lanka witnessed 7,40,600 foreign tourists in the first quarter of 2019. The island nation was hoping to a drastic increase in the total Indian tourist arrivals to Sri Lanka .
Sri Lanka aims to progressively promote the destination for weddings MICE and film shoots this year, with leisure being the primary focus.