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Delhi-Bangkok flights cheaper than air travel to NE states: Tour operators, ET Infra

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<p>Representative image</p>
Representative image

Expressing regret that the cost of domestic airfares to pristine destinations in the northeast is costlier than airfares to Thailand, travel agencies and hotel operators urged the government to intervene in the matter. The airfare from Delhi to Bangkok as on December 1 (one-way) is Rs 11,470 whereas flights from Delhi to Shillong cost around Rs 14,974, travel agents claimed.

This was discussed at length at the B2B meet at the International Tourism Mart here on Wednesday.

Entrepreneurs from the tourism industry from all the NE states agreed that airfares from Delhi/Mumbai to Bangkok is cheaper than those to Shillong or Agartala or any of the state capitals of the region.

“We understand this is due to number of travellers going to Bangkok. We want the government of India to intervene and put a cap on this because it is unfair that domestic fares are costlier than international destinations,” a Guwahati-based tour operator said.

Meanwhile, the Union tourism ministry has sanctioned over Rs 1,300 crore for 16 projects in the northeast region under the Swadesh Darshan Scheme while 15 other projects are being developed under Swadesh Darshan (SD) 2.0, officials said.

“A total of 15 tourist destinations are being taken up in the northeast for development under SD 2.0. Religious tourism is a major motivation for tourists to travel,” they added.

Meghalaya has been allotted two schemes – Sohra and Shillong – under SD 2.0 where investment of up to Rs 50 crore will be made.

The ministry has also sanctioned eight projects worth Rs 256.45 crore for the integrated development of identified pilgrimage destinations in the northeast states under the PRASHAD Scheme, they said.

The ministry of tourism has also sanctioned the development of 22 viewpoints at the cost of Rs 44.44 crore to provide world-class infrastructure and related services for the highway network viz, commercial spaces, logistic parks, traveller facilities such as wayside amenities (WSA) in the region.

Many of the projects sanctioned under SD 1.0 and PRASHAD schemes have already been completed and have been dedicated to the public, they said.

Accordingly, air connectivity in the northeast has increased tremendously in the last few years with 16 airports providing accessibility to tourist destinations in the region, officials said.

Under the RCS-UDAN Scheme of the ministry of aviation, 53 tourism routes have become operational of which 10 routes are exclusively for the northeast region, officials added.

Also, rail connectivity in the region has also increased and railways is now connecting seven states in the northeast.

  • Published On Nov 23, 2023 at 02:30 PM IST

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