KOCHI: Australia is turning out to be a popular holiday destination for Keralites now. Considering the growth in the number of tourist travelling abroad, Tourism Australia recently organised Australia Marketplace India (AMI) in Kochi last week. As many as 17,000 tourists and travellers from Kerala visited Australia during the 2018-19 financial year. The tourist from Kerala spent around 4.50 crores Australian Dollars there.
After Maharashtra, it is the travellers from Kerala who visit Australia more, considering the tourist arrival from India. We are hoping to attract more tourists from Kerala to experience Australia,” said Nishant Kashikar, country manager, India and Gulf, Tourism Australia.
According to Nishant, Tourism Australia is targetting a growth of 20 per cent in Kerala and expand its reach in tier-II to tier-III cities in India. “As Australia is a vast country often we get repeat travellers. Like India with diverse culture and landscapes, tourists like to explore Australia. To support increasing demand from India, Australia is gearing up to ensure fast visa processing.
A traveller does not require to attend an office in-person to submit travel application, provide biometrics, attend the interview and submit the passport. Visa application can be filed online and it takes on an average 15 days to complete the visa processing,” he said.Visitors from India to Australia reached 3,67,000 during the year ended May 2019, growing 11 per cent compared to the previous year. The travellers from India spent around 1.7 billion Australian Dollars. Australia also promotes sports tourism including attracting tourist to witness T20 Cricket World in 2020.
Australia Marketplace India is a platform for Australian tourism to provide India’s top-selling agents of Australian holidays with tourism products and destination updates while also strengthening business relationships. The participating Australian suppliers this year represent a diverse range of businesses including accommodation providers, attractions, experiences, cultural institutions and state and regional tourism organisations.
The event has received participation from 20 new Australian suppliers, supporting Tourism Australia’s objective of growing visitor yield from India by encouraging travel to new destinations, experiences and products. The Indian buyers have been represented by companies from across 10 Indian cities.