PANAJI: High airfare and fewer flights key concerns
Travel & Tourism Association of Goa (TTAG) is very concerned about the sustainability of tourism business in Goa in wake of many challenges the industry faces. “Post-pandemic Goa’s tourism sector is facing many challenges. Airfare is still quite high and the number of international flights is still less than the pre-pandemic level,” said Nilesh Shah, President of TTAG, a leading travel trade association of Goa. “It is very essential to resume more scheduled international flights to and from Goa to increase overall foreign tourist arrivals in the state,” Shah added.
Post pandemic, Goa’s tourism sector witnessed strong resurge for almost two years because then many international destinations were not open, and people were desperate to travel as they had not been able to travel due to restrictions on travel. “Post-pandemic every segment of Goa’s tourism industry performed well. Tourists from segments such as family, wedding, MICE, and others thronged to the state,” said Shah, “But now, with the openings of international destinations, competition has picked up for the state’s tourism sector, and the challenge is to sustain the gains. So today sustainability of tourism business is a key challenge before us.”
The reduced number of charter flights to Goa is a challenge to the sustainability of tourism business. Russia and the UK have been the two major charter-flight markets for Goa. “In the best pre-pandemic times, Goa used to receive about 1200 charter flights between October and March, but currently because of Russia-Ukraine war, and the collapse of Thomas Cook in the UK, the number of charter flights coming to Goa has reduced significantly, affecting our inbound business.” said Shah.