What Are the Prospects for the Indian Travel Market?
While considerable focus is paid to the Chinese and their growing use of tourism, the Indian travel story is getting lost in the noise. For Indians who find they have spare money to afford to travel, they are increasingly sampling the delights of other parts of their vast country and some traveling are further afield too.
In this article, we look at the prospects for the Indian travel market going forward.
Domestic Travel is on the Rise
The market for domestic travel within India is ever growing as the population gradually embraces smartphone use and apps especially. For instance, the travel booking service Kayak is now present in the Indian market, making it possible to book online for hotel reservations and flights.
Some analytics believe that domestic airline travel will grow by 11% to $48 billion by 2020. However, there is still fewer than 20 percent of hotels are currently accepting online bookings, but this is also expected to improve with increased adoption rates over the next few years.
Outbound Foreign Tourism is Popular Too
The India outbound tourism market is gaining in popularity and not just with the rich.
Established Indians in their 20s and 30s are now regularly seen in Asian countries like Thailand, Malaysia, and Indonesia. Some also travel to Laos, sometimes settling there to start businesses when they see an opportunity. Younger Indians tend to travel in groups, either as backpackers running at a low-cost or as part of an organized tour group.
The independent traveler is different when compared to China, where their tourists are mostly spotted entering and exiting tour buses. Indian tourists, by comparison, enjoy seeing off the beaten track sites, as well as taking the well-worn tourist path.
Affluent Travelers Looking for Luxury Options
Wealthier Indian foreign travelers typically go away with their families and prefer a similar lifestyle to what they enjoy at home.
This is a select group that prefers boutique travel groups or a customized itinerary that is tailored to their preferences. Usually, they’re mixing upmarket shopping with some sightseeing, but somewhat away from mass tourism.
YouTube Vloggers Share What’s Possible
Indian YouTube vloggers are sharing what works for them on their travels. Their videos and Instagram stories are showing what’s possible and encouraging Indian people, especially younger ones, to stretch their legs.
While some of their content is strictly based in India itself, as their channels have grown in popularity and earnings, some have been able to fly to different destinations in search of content to differentiate their brand.
The advent of vloggers for the Indian market is growing as smartphone adoption increases. While not every home has a PC in India, younger people covert a way to connect through technology. It’s only the beginning for vlogging there and this seems to be running in lockstep with the growth in outbound tourism.
The prospects for Indian tourism are growing both domestically and with locals hopping on planes to see new countries on their bucket list. It’s certainly a market to watch for the future.