God’s Own Country Kerala is one of the most serene and scenic travel destinations in the country. The much-loved natural bounty state is planning to open itself to tourism in early October this year. The state shut for tourism ever since COVID-19 broke out in the country, eventually leading to strict lockdowns across the nation. Kadakampally Surendran, Minister for Co-Operation, Tourism and Devaswom in Government of Kerala, announced that the state is planning to welcome tourists in early October now.
Ayurveda and ayurvedic massages often find a great connect with Kerala tourism and for many tourists who visit the state, the trip is not complete without getting a rejuvenating body massage. Now due to COVID-19, there is an increasing demand for immunity boosters and alternative treatments like Ayurveda. Kerala is hoping to pitch this as its USP, as the state sets up to welcome tourists. According to Kerala Tourism Minister Surendran, the tourism department has prepared a report and plan for the same. The plan is with a very emphasis on safety and SOPs for the same.
Over 4,000 hotels, resorts, 1,000 plus houseboats, scores of ayurvedic centres, tour operators, homestay owners, taxi drivers, tourist guides, water theme parks, and adventure tourism sectors are in dire financial constraints, due to the continuous lockdown of the tourist. More than 15 lakh people are directly and 20 lakh people indirectly working in the tourism sector. Industry bodies point this out. Owing to the lockdown, the state tourism industry estimated to suffer a loss of Rs. 25,000 crore, while the annual revenue from the sector is around Rs. 45,000 crores. The state government recently announced support scheme of Rs. 455 crore. (Source: Deccan Herald)
Kerala’s premier tourism body, the Confederation of Kerala Tourism Industry (CKTI) demanded that the state government take immediate steps to reopen the tourism sector. The sector has been closed for the past six months due to the coronavirus pandemic.