Nepal yet to find favour with UP tourists
NEPAL TOURISM Board?s (NTB) frantic efforts to woo back tourists from Uttar Pradesh after restoration of democracy in the Himalayan Kingdom are yet to catch the fancy of majority of tour operators in the state.india Updated: Sep 16, 2006 11:48 IST
NEPAL TOURISM Board’s (NTB) frantic efforts to woo back tourists from Uttar Pradesh after restoration of democracy in the Himalayan Kingdom are yet to catch the fancy of majority of tour operators in the state.
Travel trade analysts in Lucknow say that after the bloody pro-democracy movement in Nepal, only two to three major tour operators have been left. The small tour operators shut shop and diversified into other businesses as tourists inflow almost stopped from 2002 to 2004.
Tourism boards across the globe rely on private tour operators to facilitate tourist movements. With very few operators left in Nepal to handle tourist traffic, state tour operators fear drawing flak from tourists, who might not get the treatment one expects in tourist establishments.
With the tourist season just about to begin in India and a major marketing blitzkrieg launched by the tourism boards of south east Asian nations in UP, the NTB has been left with too many issues to sort out.
Firstly, majority of the nearly 1.5 lakh tourists from the state, who visited Nepal annually five years back, have started travelling to countries like Singapore, Thailand and Malaysia.
Secondly, the state tour operators are compelled to deal with small time Nepali counterparts who are already under pressure from global tour operators to ensure comfortable stay of their tourists.
“After the restoration of democracy in Nepal, on an average about ten couples a month are going there on holidays. The number was above 50 five years back”, informed Vivek Pandey, regional head (UP and Uttaranchal) of Delhi Express Holidays. He felt that the NTB would have to aggressively market the country in UP to win back the tourists’ confidence. “It’s not impossible, but the NTB needs to start working immediately,” Pandey added.