As a further result of its continuous efforts to promote Sri Lanka as a potential tourism destination, Sri Lanka Tourism attended the South Asia Travel & Tourism Exchange (SATTE) travel fair held on May 18th in Greater Noida, Delhi-NCR, India – 22nd, with 65 participating Sri Lankan travel and tourism companies, according to a press release from the Sri Lankan Tourism Promotion Bureau. The press release adds: “Sri Lanka’s participation was successful and this year’s SATTE was a joint effort by the High Commissioner of Sri Lanka in New Delhi, the Sri Lanka Tourism Promotion Bureau and 65 members of the travel industry including SriLankan Airlines. India is an important source market for tourism in Sri Lanka.
‘SATTE provides a comprehensive platform for domestic and international buyers and professionals from across the travel, tourism and hospitality industries, as well as national and state tourism authorities. SATTE is recognized as Asia’s leading travel and tourism exhibition to do business, share knowledge and exchange ideas to achieve solution-oriented innovation to accelerate the industry’s growth pace. SATTE has grown in terms of exhibitions and visitors (including international and domestic buyers) and is now the largest networking forum for the travel and tourism industry in South Asia.
“SATTE is an exceptional professional event that is well supported by the Ministry of Tourism, Government of India, National and International Tourism Boards, Indian and International Travel and Trade Associations and Organizations, among others. Over 1,200 exhibitors, over 35,000 trade visitors, over 800 VIPs and delegates, 26 state tourism associations from over 50 countries took part in SATTE 2022.
“The stand in Sri Lanka covered an area of 256.5 m² and was a lively attraction, with the decoration used to decorate the stand highlighting all the tourist attractions of Sri Lanka. The stand warmly welcomed visitors and gave them a taste of Sri Lanka’s perfectly blended culture and heritage. HGU Pushpakumara, Minister, High Commissioner of Sri Lanka, in the presence of officials from Sri Lanka Tourism Promotion Bureau, officials from the High Commissioner of Sri Lanka and Country Manager of SriLankan Airlines, solemnly opened the Sri Lanka booth on May 18, marking the day of the event by they light the traditional oil lamp together with industry representatives.
“India is recognized as one of the fastest growing outbound travel markets in the world. UNWTO has ranked India as one of the fastest growing overseas markets in the world, with travel increasing by 25% each year.
“Sri Lanka Tourism has identified India as an important source market for Sri Lanka, which could offer greater opportunities for the Sri Lankan travel industry to work with SATTE members.
‘Interest in exploring new places, increasing purchasing power, availability of direct and low-cost international flights are the main drivers of growth in India’s travel segment. Sri Lanka plays a crucial role here, as the destination is described as the #3 most talked about “tropical Southeast Asian” destination. 98% of trips to Sri Lanka were for leisure, mainly for wildlife and beaches.
“There is a strong flight connection to major cities in India with SriLankan Airlines, Indigo, Air India, Vistara etc. Although most travel bookings are made offline (agents and OTA platforms), travelers are increasingly preferring to book online, especially in terms of Accomodation.
“Leading hotel chains such as Shangri-La, Mövenpick and Radisson have opened in Colombo, while Grand Hyatt and ITC hotels are set to open. This is an indication of the great interest shown by luxury hotel chains. New tourism zones ranging from beaches to mountains and forests are creating new avenues for the tourism sector in areas such as luxury travel, eco-tourism, health and wellness, etc. MICE, Casinos, Wedding & Honeymoon Destinations, Leisure, Youth, Golf Tours, Ramayanaya Trail, Buddhist pilgrimages etc. are among the main products that Sri Lanka could offer to Indians all year round.’