Valentine Day tourism has hit ground zero as airfares rocket
Valentine’s Day seems to be around the corner and many people have a planned out week for the Valentine’s celebration at Goa, the best destination place in India. However, due to a seasonal airfare rates increase, a lot of restaurants and outlets have been facing business crisis due to the lack of tourists. Café taps into the sentiment
There is no good luck dropping from the sky this Valentine’s day for Goa’s hoteliers and restaurant owners. On the big day where love is celebrated, packaged and marketed, there is no love landing for them in the form of tourists. Reason: Crazy airline prices An average person travelling has to pay around 6,000 to 9,000 bucks for per head in a return trip for Mumbai to Goa flights. Imagine the rate for two heads; it would be around 18,000- 20,000. The keynote is simple, why would anyone want to spend so much on a fight just an hour, when they can enjoy a grand valentine’s eve in their own locality at an exotic restaurant. Perhaps, even make a foreign package trip in that entire amount being paid for the airfare.
Café speaks to F&B outlets on how their business is being affected. Of course the business is being affected. The amount you have planned to spend for your vacation, if it goes for your airfare then people won’t be visiting the topmost restaurants, they would rather go to cheaper restaurants. It devaluates the whole experience and they will have to compromise on things they want to enjoy. In this kind of situation, why would anyone want to compromise and come to Goa… they would probably celebrate in their own area. We are having a couple’s special for the Valentine’s Day, but I cannot justify on what outcome we would receive on that day seeing the situation on high air rates. RAAGHAV SETHI, Fisherman Warf Panjim,Unit Manager Goa’s tourism industry has taken a blow to a large extent with the soaring airfares. Within the same price range, couples have the choice of jetting off to places such as Thailand or Dubai to celebrate Valentine’s Day. Hence any F&B outlet is directly affected as well. AKSHAY ANAND, Old Bombay Arpora, Business Partner According to DGCA (Directorate General of Civil Aviation) the actual flying time to Goa is forty five minutes, but the airlines have declared it as an hour and 10 minutes. So these flights actually are forced to fall into a higher bracket instead of being included in the scheme of Udhaan where the max price for the ticket should be Rs: 2500. As Goa is the celebratory destination of the country, the airlines have decided to milk it for all it is worth. The adverse effect due to airlines high prices is severely affecting the tourism industry here. We are seeing more and more lack of booking at hotels and empty restaurants. This issue must be raised with the tourism department and the airfares made more affordable because as it is one can fly to international destinations with the same price range. VISHAL FATNANI, Casa Playa,Business Partner Well, that could be one of out of the many reasons, namely exorbitant cab prices, influx of too many restaurants and quality of tourists. But, Boca Loca being popular with locals too, we are not really affected to that extent. SARIKA VARSHNEI, Boca Loca Candolim During any festival or celebrations for which people come to Goa, the airfares go up without fail. The hotel and restaurant business has hit an all time low and the airfares spike does not help at all. One way of beating this is by planning in advance. Also to improve footfalls, the authorities can strategise special offers and festival packages. Whatever it is, we all need to work together to bring Goa back up onto the top tourism list. SHIMONTI (RUMI), Cuebebar Assagao, Owner
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