VISAKHAPATNAM: Vizag, which is said to be the biggest tourist attraction in the state after Tirupati, has failed to attract vacationers to its much-touted ‘Leisure Night Package’ tour of the city, thanks to the launching of the package in a haphazard manner in the first week of July by the Andhra Pradesh Tourism Development Corporation (APTDC).
The tour initially received good response for the first two days, but turned out to be a dud later on, restricting the number of tourists to a single digit number, on a daily basis. The situation can be understood as the APTDC officials are now using a six-seater car for the tour, replacing an AC bus.
According to the officials at the APTDC Central Reservation Office, less than 10 people have opted for the night tour, on an average per day, since the inaugural. The package has been unsuccessful so far and the officials attributed it to lack of publicity, while claiming that efforts are being made to create awareness about the tour package.
The officials launched the programme in a hasty manner without giving much thought to the tourist spots included in it, apart from the timings. The entire tour is completed in a hurry with each spot having less than 30 minutes to spare. Many sightseers opined that night tours should last even after midnight, but not end at 9.30 pm. “Obviously, it’s a bad idea from the APTDC. The schedule was tightly packed and they did not even consider traffic before finalising it. They must rethink and restructure it,” says K Varun, a student from the city.
Some Vizagites suggested that a complete night tour or boat drives in the sea can be added attractions for tourism packages, not only for tourists but also for locals. “A beach drive or a boat trip at zero hours can be a very good attraction for the tourists. The packages from APTDC lack proper scheduling and fun part,” feels K Santosh, an employee from Concentrix.
APTDC general manager Bheemashankar Rao attributed the poor response to theC off-season period (July-August). “However, it is expected to improve in the coming days. We are giving much publicity for the tour package and create awareness among the public about the newly introduced package,” he told Express.