PANAJI: The Goa Tourism department on Tuesday released Home Stay and Caravan policies aimed at attracting tourists with the promise of a ‘beyond beach’ experience to explore the coastal state which will also boost the income of local people.
Chief Minister Pramod Sawant said the Home Stay policy will primarily benefit the people living in Sanguem, Quepem, Canacona, Sattari, Bicholim and Pernem talukas.
“This policy also gives scope for women entrepreneurs as it aims to take tourists to the hinterlands. We have noticed that tourists like to stay in rural areas, especially during the rainy season,” he said, adding that the caravan policy will also help travellers explore Goa in a better way.
The policies offer incentives for home-stay and also for creating infrastructure for parking caravans- the specially built vehicles being used for travel, leisure and accommodation.
Speaking on the occasion, Tourism Minister Rohan Khaunte said when tourists visit rural areas, they understand the culture of the state, and heritage, and also experience its cuisine.
“Tourists start exploring what they have not explored in the past,” Khaunte said, adding that both these policies will be in force for five years.
He said the first hundred home-stays can enjoy incentives like a grant of Rs 2 lakh to upgrade the necessary infrastructure.
“Additional incentives like charging of electricity and water tariff on the line with domestic connections, waiving of registration fee etc. are given,” the tourism minister said.
Khaunte also said the tourism department would provide high-speed Internet for the home stays.
Speaking about the Caravan policy, he said that amenities would be created in the beach belt for parking caravans. Such parking facilities would also be created in rural Goa so that tourists can enjoy the lush green forests.
The minister said a fund of Rs 20 lakh would be provided as a subsidy to create the infrastructure for caravan parking under this policy.