MICE tourists, he said, account for 25 per cent of total arrivals

Kerala govt considering a change in liquor policy to lure corporate tourists
news Liquor policy Thursday, January 21, 2016 - 18:38

With the state losing out to Sri Lanka in luring corporate travelers, the Kerala state government is contemplating the issue of short term liquor licenses to hotels.

"There has been some impact on MICE (Meetings, incentives, conferences and exhibitions)  travel to the state since the ban on liqour. We are planning to issue short-term licenses to hotels to overcome the problem," Kerala Tourism deputy director Nandakumar K P told PTI on Thursday.

Currently, only five star hotels can serve liqour.

He indicated that with the state assembly elections slated to be held in a few months, the directive might come in once the new government takes charge.

MICE tourists, he said, account for 25 per cent of total arrivals but on revenue terms the share is much bigger.

Moreover, Sri Lanka is posing a threat to Kerala tourism as natural beauty there is similar and it too is offering ayurvedic treatment.

"Sri Lanka is offering their destination cheaper and many are getting attracted to it. It is an international destination," Nanda Kumar said.

However, authentic ayurveda treatments and scenic backwaters and overall experience of tourists will keep Kerala going strong, he said.

In 2014, 9,23,366 foreign tourists and 1,16,95,411 domestic tourists visited the southern state. As of October 2015, 7,75,390 foreign tourists and 76,71,277 domestic tourists were recorded to have visited Kerala.

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