On the opening day of the interaction meet between buyers and sellers at the PATA Travel Mart (PTM) 2015, Bangalore, Nepal put up a bold and united front to answer queries about tourism in Nepal post earthquake.
The Nepali delegation was upbeat about the response and queries that were posed by buyers who crowded the Nepal stall at the exhibition hall throughout the day.
“We are in the limelight after the earthquake and everyone wants to help and support Nepal. This fair is a good opportunity for Nepal to complete its comeback, as even Indian authorities and the government is interested in joint promotion. Nepal has put up a good show here and with 300 intentional buyers and 1,100 delegates, this is a good platform to promote tourism,” said Basant Mishra of Temple Tiger, who is also the general secretary of PATA International.
“People are meeting us and asking when we can start sending tourists. With the national flag carrier resuming direct flights to Bangalore and Mumbai, there are plenty of opportunities ahead,” he added.
“The only problem is the political situation back home at present because otherwise there are many people who want to visit Nepal even now. The challenge is more in terms of how to put our own house in order,” said Mishra, reflecting the fears that exist among the travel trade.
Govinda Karki, director general at the Department of Tourism, said, “The Nepal stall has attracted huge crowds and everyone is interested in the situation in the country. We are happy to stand together with the message that Nepal is back to normal and ready for business.”
Private sector participants were also excited with the turnout. William Ma, CEO of Asian Encounters, said that this time around the Nepal stall was busier with visitors who seem genuinely interested in supporting the country. “The best part about PTM is that the ministry, Nepal Tourism Board, the flag carrier and the traders are standing united with one voice saying that we are back on top of the world and ready to give every visitor a special experience,” he said
Raju Bikram Shah, group general manager of Shangri-la Hotel and Resorts — one of the participants from Nepal — said he was satisfied by the interest visitors displayed in Nepal.
“A lot of people are interested in Nepal and we have been taking serious queries. PTM 2015 is a good platform for all of us as it offers the opportunity to make new contacts and business as well as revisit old friends and business associates,” he said.
“Looking at the interest in Nepal and positive feedback we are getting from the travel trade here, I believe that we can organise a Himalayan Travel Mart in Nepal in May 2016. We can build brand Nepal better and stronger through this and we should start working on this,” said Suman Pandey, president of PATA Nepal Chapter.
Held annually in different countries, the PTM 2015 is being held in Bangalore, India from September 6 to 8 at the Bangalore International Exhibition Centre.