Bitten by the foreign bug

Missing View

Bitten by the foreign bug

Much has been said and written about the diversity of India and how much it has to offer in terms of travel, food and culture.

From the unending coast in the South to the snow-capped peaks in the North, one can find either madness or spirituality depending on what you are looking for. But irrespective of the kind of diversity present within our boundaries, you hardly see anyone aspiring to see what this country has to offer.

Thousands of foreigners visit this country every year to travel its length and breadth. However, the citizens here somehow aspire for foreign travel instead of seeing what their own country has to offer. Metrolife asked the younger generation of the City as to why they hardly make an effort to appreciate the diversity here and instead make a wish list of foreign destinations.

“Foreign culture is any day more attractive for an average person,” says George, a student. Many feel that due to the  different culture abroad, there is more to see and learn there. “What you learn while travelling abroad is much more than what you learn while travelling within the country,” says Kumail, a student.

The younger generation feels that change in culture, though existent, isn’t that prominent within this country. “Foreign travel is obviously more attractive to everyone because you get more exposure there,” says Romit, a student.

The general feeling among people is that they know the culture of the country since they can manage with Hindi in most places. “All North Indians are termed as Punjabis and South Indians as Madrasis by many,” says Savi, a student. “Most tourists don’t even do a research on their destinations. They would still call it a fulfilling trip even if they have to spent all day  in their hotel rooms,” says Anish, an IT professional.

Another major reason for this behaviour is the mentality. “There is this prestige associated with travelling to a foreign country. If I go to Kashmir, no one would be excited about it but if I go to a foreign country, people around me are fascinated,” says Abhinav, a marketing professional. “It just sounds cool to say you’re just back from New York than say  Agartala,” says Savi.

The other angle is the marketing side. “There are serious travellers here who travel across the country but that number has always been low. With travelling becoming more commercialised now, you hear about offers on foreign packages and your friends tell you about the ones they have been on,” says Anish. So in the end, it boils down to the fact that things within reach are taken for granted. “It’s not about what India has to offer, it’s about what people perceive it has to offer. As they say Ghar ki murgi daal barabar,” says
Abhinav.

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