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Goa is still a popular summer destination,  Despite the sweltering weather

The Postcard Hotels and Resorts is commanding a premium of 17% across its four properties in Goa compared to last summer. Despite the sweltering heat, guests are willing to pay room charges of ₹25,000 per night, contributing to over 80% of its occupancy.

Encouraged by this, the luxury hotel chain is planning to expand its presence in Goa by adding four more properties which will more than double its inventory in the state.

Even amid warm and rainy conditions, hotels and travel companies that cater to the Goa market are seeing a notable upswing in business volumes and room rates compared to the summer of 2022.

For the hospitality services sector Goa has become an all-year-round destination. As a result, most hotels have witnessed 10-20% surge in room rates over a year ago. But, this hasn’t deterred tourists.

The opening of Manohar International Airport emerged as a significant contributor to tourism, due to improved connectivity with tier 2 and tier 3 cities, like Bhubaneswar, Ranchi, Dehradun, Guwahati and Coimbatore, said online travel agency

According to the latest data released by the state government, about 5 million domestic tourists had visited the state till September. That apart, 100,000 international tourists visited during the period, compared to 3.3 million domestic and 22,000 foreign tourists in the first three quarters of 2021. Notably, between March and May 2022 Goa saw an influx of 1.9. million domestic tourists.

Despite a twofold increase in hotel tariff, and 20-30% rise in airfares compared to 2022, Goa remains one of the most popular destinations. Thomas Cook India has observed a trend among working professionals opting for many short breaks, or ‘mini-cations’.

SOTC, a leading travel company, also witnessed a surge in business, up 35% this summer season compared to 2019. Besides, in comparison to 2022, it is seeing a robust 10-15% demand growth.

Sabina Chopra, co-founder of Yatra Online Pvt. Ltd, said while many tourists crowd hill stations during summer, a significant number of people who may not have enough time, prefer Goa.

Hotel bookings to Goa on the Yatra platform have soared by 30% over pre-pandemic years of 2019-20 while airline bookings grew 50% during the period. On a year-on-year basis, air travel to Goa rose 100%, it said. “The hills are now packed and people who do not have time but just a weekend, are picking Goa over the hills. Also, the nightlife at Goa that used to shut down during summers and monsoons is now open all the year round,” she said.

Taj Hotels, owned by Indian Hotels Co. Ltd, which has nine properties across categories of stays with over 1,200 rooms in Goa, said 85% of the demand stems from domestic customers. Corporate and social events have doubled over the last year. “Hotels are commanding over 15% higher rates compared to last year. There is also a significant improvement in foreign arrivals, primarily due to growth in charter business,” said Parveen Chander Kumar, executive vice president, sales and marketing at the company.

Last month, there was significant increase in the number of conferences in the state with the Grand Hyatt Goa and Cidade De Goa sold out. IHCL recently opened an independent restobar, Seven Rivers, and three new food outlets.

According to an ICICI Securities report referring to consultancy HVS Anarock’s data, India Hospitality Industry Overview 2022, forward hotel rates for June-August 2023 are 8-10% higher than a year ago, hinting at a demand surge for leisure destinations like Goa.



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