For travellers, now there are multiple reasons to rejoice. The Union Budget, announced today, will have a key focus on the travel and tourism sector, with 50 tourist destinations to be selected with the active participation of the state governments. These destinations will be developed for domestic and international tourism as a whole package.
Aloke Bajpai, Group CEO & Co-founder of Ixigo commented on the announcements, saying, “We are happy the government has recognized this and welcome the targeted incentives announced in this budget of developing 50 tourist destinations in India as a package for attracting domestic and international travellers. The development of 50 new airports will improve regional air connectivity and benefit travellers from Tier 2 & 3 cities which have seen significant growth in demand for air travel and first-time flyers post-relaxation of travel restrictions.”
Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, in her 5th Budget announcement, said that the country offers an immense attraction for domestic as well as international tourists. “There is a large potential to be tapped in tourism,” she said. The travel industry has been in a surge in the last couple of years mainly because of COVID-19, and it was only suitable that it got revived now more than ever.
Here are some reasons for travellers to cheer up.
Aviation & Railways
There will be a revival of 50 additional airports, helicopters, water aerodromes, and advanced landing grounds to improve air connectivity. Now it will become easier for more travellers to access flights and save time. Secondly, there is much to look forward to for the railways as the budget has allocated a capital outlay of Rs 2.40 lakh crores, which is the highest ever and is nine times over the fiscal year 2014.
Unity Malls and GI products
Unity Malls, that would promote GI products and other state-wise handicrafts, will now be set up in state capitals or the most populous tourist destinations with the sole agenda of “One District One Product”.
Even though expectations were high for some long-term policy announcements for the sector, there hasn’t been too many cheers for them. But overall, with the coming implementation of the Union Budget, tourism and hospitality are expected to show signs of revival in the coming year.
Infrastructure and Ecosystem
Building on India’s success in afforestation, ‘Mangrove Initiative for Shoreline Habitats & Tangible Incomes’, MISHTI, will be taken up for mangrove plantation along the coastline and on salt pan lands, wherever possible, through convergence between MGNREGS, CAMPA Fund, and other sources.