Welcome aboard, says abroad


As international borders open for tourists, people in Bangalore are seeking short-haul trips to fulfil their wanderlust.

Fancy dinner on a tropical paradise’s islands or a leap into the boundless sky from 13,000 feet. For the people of Bangalore, it is either the Maldives or Dubai to make up for their long vacation break.

Seher, an employee, of Thomas Cook, Bangalore branch, said , “Fully vaccinated people are ready to travel and a lot of people are willing to travel outside India. Same time last year the demand was very less and as of now there is a surge in international travellers from Bangalore and India.”

“People are looking for short-hauls like Dubai, Maldives and Mauritius. We have soldmostly theMaldives as a major chunk. As for the other countries  the travellers will beheading to  Europe after March. But, we have all Europe bookings from April onwards,” she  added.

On February 21, Australia reopened its borders to foreign tourists after a two-year ban, subject to specific conditions. Following the announcement on February 7, the booking platform Skyscanner noticed an immediate 21 percent increase in all global traffic. The United Kingdom was the country with the most searches for flights, followed by India.Aishwarya  Shreykar, a student, said, “Istarted looking for flights in the last week of January and I booked my flights right away and flew to Australia in the last week of February.”

Naseeruddin, owner of STC Travels, said, “Australia has opened its border but the queries from Bangalore are comparatively less and it may pick up in one or two months. There is a huge demand for Maldives and from February the demand picked pace with borders opening up.”

According to a survey provided by the International Air Transport Association (IATA), international ticket sales have increased by 11 percentage points in recent weeks compared to sales in 2019.  “Right now, the airfare prices are hiked but it will eventually come down when all the destinations will open,” said Rajat Saran, founder of Traaexplore.

However, Harish, founder of Caesar travels, said that there is less demand for tailor made vacations and people are afraid to travel because of Covid-19. As of February, the demand has fallen and for March the queries are coming in and the pace is picking up.

He added that the borders have opened up, the Covid-19 protocols are still intact which is impacting the tourists. “The people who are willing to travel abroad have to be fully vaccinated and on the other hand the visas are not being issued.”

Abbas Ahmed, director of Meetings, Incentives, Conference/ Conventions and Exhibitions/ Events (MICE) said, “Individuals are travelling for various reasons. Either for holiday, business or as a part of an organization that is undertaking their travel.”

He added, travel is predominately huge. Within India and in Bangalore for sure travel has picked up pretty much well and has reached certain peak levels. Outside of the country people have started traveling quite some time back, but yes, now there is a surge with most of the countries in the west and in the east opening up borders, with lesser restrictions hinting towards the fact that travelling abroad is much safer now.

People irrespective of whatever purpose they are traveling to, they are contributing to the tourism sector. “Although there is a question on import tourism because we still don’t know if people from other countries are finding India safe,” he further added.