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India’s tourism ministry has tabled a draft to discuss measures crucial to reviving the confidence of travellers looking forward to exploring the country. The certification will be granted to tourist hotspots which will implement prevailing international health and social distancing standards. By Manya Saini

 

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The tourism and hospitality industry have been two of the worst-hit sectors due to the Coronavirus pandemic. In a bid to revive them, the Ministry of Tourism is looking to come out with a certification system, which will carry the minimum standards of safety and sanitation to be implemented by tourist hotspots and restaurants. 

As per reports, the first draft of the certification was discussed on May 20, in an online meeting with Meenakshi Sharma, Director General, Ministry of Tourism, with different state secretaries. She has further said that the industry is ready to accept and is encouraging the certification. The ministry has already created basic guidelines and circulated it to all the states. 

 

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It’s a significant move to revive the confidence of the travellers once the country inches towards normalcy and people begin to book leisure and business holidays. The Tourism Ministry is considering having an industry-led third party to grant the certification and conduct regular audits. 

Sharma also expressed, as the diverse Indian travel sector has never had a standardised regulatory mechanism, the new system will be challenging. The difficulty arises from the different and diverse nature of the hospitality sector, wherein the rules for a luxury hotel cannot be applied indiscriminately on homestays or hostel accommodations and vice versa. 

 

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Apart from the certification, the ministry is also looking to embark on relationship building ventures with travellers using positive public relations and marketing campaigns to reiterate India’s status as a safe destination, especially for international visitors. 

Looking ahead for long term solutions and finding means to bring back tourists to India after the pandemic subsides, will help sustain the industry on which the livelihood of millions across the country depends. 

Related: #TnlOutreach: ‘Rebound Travel’ –The Future Of Tourism & Hospitality Decoded By Industry Experts