Budget 2020: Relax tax on tourism sector

Budget 2020: Relax tax on foreign-bound travelers

By Hari Ganapathi

The year 2019 has clearly established India as one of the fastest growing outbound tourism markets in the world, second only to China. Despite the growing clamour around economic slowdown, we foresee the demand for outbound tourism continuing to grow through 2020. UN World Tourism Organization estimates 50 million Indians will travel abroad by 2020. Driven by enormously increasing middle class incomes, availability of direct and low cost airlines from Tier 1 and Tier 2 cities and rising internet penetration in the country, the total outbound spending of Indians will see an upward growth of USD 28 billion by 2020.

The growing share of experience seeking travellers from this part of the continent has led more countries like Malaysia and Thailand to make travel visa-free for Indians. On average, Indian travellers spend around USD 1200 per visit, which is more than the Americans (USD700) and Britishers (USD 500). It is also more than the Chinese and Japanese tourists.With 75 million+ passport holders in the country, the outbound travel industry in India is an unstoppable force that’s creating deep impressions in the international travel market. Over the last seven years, Indian outbound travel has been consistently growing at 10-12% and stakeholders are seeing huge potential in investing in the Indian outbound travel market - we hope that the budget announcement this year facilitates in continuing this trend.

(Author is Co-founder – Pickyourtrail)