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Hartals & Bad Roads Hinder Tourism’ - Mr. manu PV, MD, DHK
  • April 2017

Tourism is a thriving business in Kerala and people are attracted towards this sector dreaming of economic benefits as well as getting a refreshed feeling through travel. Discover Kerala Holidays (DKH Hospitality PVT Ltd) is a full-service Inbound & Domestic Tour Operator based in Trivandrum, Kerala, since 2008, which has quickly and professionally established a strong position in the tourism market.

DKH is accredited with Department of Kerala - Tourism, GSA for KTDC (Kerala Tourism Development Corporation) and associated with KTM (Kerala Travel Mart), ATTOI (Association of Tourism Trade Organizations India) and CATO (Confederation of Accredited Tour Operators). Apart from tourism sector they are into corporate market with leading companies like Samsung, LG, Whirlpool, India Bulls, Berger Paints Etc. are our Prestige and do conferences, product launch, incentives etc for them.  

Mr. Manu who helms the Discover Kerala Holidays (DKH) is concerned over the present scenario of tour operating companies as online companies are usurping the chances that are coming on the way. Mostly both domestic as well as international tourists today opt for online booking which in turn becomes a big backlash on tour operating companies.

He confidently says that there is a great inflow of tourists though this monsoon season showed a dullness in tourism market. He added that the tour operators expected a great inflow of Arab tourists; however it did not come to the expected mark. Arabs visit Kerala with family to spend leisure holidays.

When asked about the major challenges that the tourism sector is facing pat comes Manu’s answer it is nothing but ‘hartals’. He explained the recently faced scenario that our Kerala faced district-wise many hartals and one state wide hartal which gave bad repercussion on tourism. Idukki itself faced 4-5 hartals and it was same with Munnar, both are heavily thronged by tourists.

Hartals give traumatic situation both to tourists as well as tour operators. The tourists are forced to transfer from one destination to another during the wee hours. The house boats stay stagnant due to hartals and tourists both domestic as well as international ask for refund. Manu explains the tough situation they face and how they try hard to tackle it in an amicable manner.

The second and the most important part he mentioned were about the pathetic condition of our roads. The condition of roads increase the travel time and the tourists are forced to be in their vehicles for hours. Boredom and fatigue engross them and their enjoyment fall apart due to the unpleasant journey. Manu points out that the government should do the road repair, widening and bridge construction during off season so that the traffic jams as well as uncomfortable travel can be averted.

Another key point Manu mention is about the high rate of our hotels and the flight charges. According to him an inbound flight charge equals to two and fro international charge to places like Thailand, Malaysia etc. So there should be relaxation in flight charges and hotels should also take a unanimous decision on how to cut shot their charges in order to attract the tourists.

He sticks on the point that at least tourists should be exempted from hartals. The government should decide to support the common man to get out of the fear of hartals. Those who participate can participate and support hartals but should not hinder the life of others. Another factor he calls is for the infrastructure development in destinations. The tourists have to wait in the queue for long hours if they have to go for a boat ride in places like Munnar and Thekkady. Another hassle is the high restrictions in National Parks, which according to him should have some relaxation.

Manu while pointing out many set backs and draw backs, he is in high when he talks about Kerala and her natural resources. He points out that the nature is in her abundance in Kerala and there are no man made natural resources here. In a four kilometer coverage the tourists can see hill station, beaches, natural beauty which is found no where in the world but in Sri Lanka. So, to turn out the nature into revenue we have to toil hard to earn the best results. 

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