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Domestic travel bookings resume ahead of summer vacation


After facing massive disruption due to Covid restrictions, the travel and hospitality industry is seeing an increase in bookings ahead of the summer holiday season. Online travel agency (OTA) EaseMyTrip saw a 30% increase in travel bookings month-over-month, while current trends in flight bookings on Goibibo indicate that holiday destinations including Ladakh, Kashmir, Goa, Kochi and Dehradun, are seeing a 100% recovery in bookings for the summer season.

Even travel agencies like Thomas Cook India are seeing a fourfold increase in demand and SOTC is seeing remarkable growth in demand by twice a week since February 1.

Hotel and resort trends are also mimicking rising travel agency trends. Although Mahindra Holidays experienced a marginal decline in occupancy in January 2022, it hopes to end the fourth quarter of FY22 on a positive note, as February and March have always been good months for them. “With the reduction in Covid cases and the easing of restrictions, as well as visible and robust demand due to the upcoming summer season, we are extremely optimistic about the recovery of the sector,” said Miguel Munoz, director of Resorts, Mahindra Holidays and Resorts. India Limited.

Vikram Lalvani, chief operating officer, resort operations, guest experience management, Sterling Holidays and Resorts, is also confident his bookings will exceed 2019 revenue as there is pent-up demand for travel.

Even the multi-brand hotel chain Accor has seen its occupancy rate increase. In fact, Puneet Dhawan, senior vice president of operations, Accor India and South Asia, said he has observed a shrinking booking window as last-minute bookings and spontaneous plans pick up.

According to Goibibo and Thomas Cook India, bookings have arrived for popular tourist hotspots including Srinagar, Goa, Dehradun, Kochi and Leh, while Mahindra Holidays and Resorts is recording bookings for Alibaug, Netrang, Gir and Naldehra.

Sterling’s Lalvani said ‘driving destinations’ will remain the top choice for travellers, and there will also be advance bookings for long-haul holidays covering multiple destinations in an area such as Munnar-Alleppey-Thekkady; Thiruvanamalai-Madurai-Kodaikanal; Nainital-Corbett; Mussoorie-Rishikesh; and Darjeeling-Gangtok.

After Covid, international travel has decreased significantly. However, some short-haul international destinations such as Dubai and the Maldives continue to top the list for international travel. They are among the first countries to open their borders to doubly vaccinated Indians. EaseMyTrip co-founder Nishant Pitti said Australia also loosening standards is a good sign for leisure travel.

Recent trends indicate that international travel to and from India is likely to open up soon. Rajeev Kale, President and Country Head, Holidays, MICE, Visa, Thomas Cook (India) Limited said demand is seen for international destinations such as Switzerland, France, Maldives, Sri Lanka, Turkey , Egypt, Mauritius, Nepal and Dubai. -Abu Dhabi for the last month of Expo 2020, and with Australia welcoming tourists again. recently. However, in light of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and the global geopolitical crisis, this may hamper international travel.

Published on

February 27, 2022