New Delhi: India's travel and hospitality industry is headed for its worst crisis with an at least Rs 8,500-crore hit in revenues due to suspension of most visas over fears of spread of coronavirus that would result in lower footfalls and drop in business for tour operators, hotels and aviation industry.
Hotels and tour operators have seen a spurt in cancellations particularly after the WHO declared the outbreak a pandemic.
Tourists cancelled travel, hitting hotels, airlines and tax collections after the government suspended most visas in a bid to halt the spread of coronavirus.
At least 40 per cent of rooms across big chains of hotels are going empty while banquet bookings have been cancelled, industry officials and associations said.
Tour operators estimate January-March quarter earnings could fall by more than 60 per cent.
India, which annually earns Rs 2,200 crore from foreign tourists arrivals, attracts nearly one million overseas visitors a month, a number which could see a drastic fall next month due to travel restrictions.
According to CII Tourism Committee, this is one of the worst crises ever to hit the Indian tourism industry impacting all its geographical segments - inbound, outbound and domestic, almost all tourism verticals - leisure, adventure, heritage, MICE, cruise, corporate and niche segments.
The report further said cancellations are “reaching a peak of almost 80 per cent now in March in many Indian locations. The value at risk from this segment will be in multiples of tens of thousands of crores.With India cancelling all visas, the chamber said the impact “ will be worse”.