SUBJECT : Quality key to holistic growth of tourism

Panaji, May 25th: It's not final, but Goa's cuisine, avi-tourism, agri-tourism and development of high quality coastal tourism infrastructure may find greater weightage in the tourism master plan under preparation. The committee for the tourism master plan has asked master planner M/s KPMG Advisory Services Private Limited to place greater emphasis on the above aspects while deliberating on module-II of the tourism master plan.

The committee has suggested that weddings be highlighted along with meetings, incentives, conferencing and exhibitions (MICE) tourism, and culinary tourism in the complementary tourism strategy.

Members felt that though Goa has emerged as a MICE hub, the absence of dedicated convention and exhibition centres in the State was seen as a hindrance to attracting large events to Goa.

A committee member said it is not easy to find authentic Goan cuisine opining that a rating system should be introduced for the same. Besides, this will help preserve the state's culinary heritage, and travellers would learn what authentic Goan cuisine is all about, the member said.

While the focus of Goa tourism's has been development of overall tourism infrastructure and facilities, committee members opined that emphasis has to be laid on quality of tourism and the same has to reflect in module-III of the tourism master plan.

The committee was of the opinion that old jetties along rivers could be used to develop nautical tourism.

Looking at health and wellness tourism, members felt that since a large number of tourists visited Goa to experience wellness tourism, that aspect too needed to be highlighted. With yoga gaining popularity it was felt that relaxation activities should be promoted. Also, tourism in the state should offer innovative short break packages to travellers they felt as the trend of taking short breaks was picking up.

Some members opined that Goa's tourism, while adopting a holistic approach in promoting Goa, should also make an effort to lengthen travellers' stay, increase spending per traveller, and encourage repeat visits. This will happen, members felt, only if emphasis was laid on quality rather than quantity.

The master planner has been asked to incorporate the committee's suggestions while formulating module-III of the tourism master plan.


Source: Times of India