TravelBiz Monitor

In Conversation

Wednesday, 05 June, 2019, 10 : 43 AM [IST]
‘India offers immense potential for Washington, DC’

Q What is your plan for the Indian market?
There is no doubt that India is an emerging market for Washington, DC, and it ranked as one of the top markets in terms of international visitations. Our goal is to continue our focus on leisure segment as 24% of travellers indicated vacation as their primary purpose of trip to DC. Education is extremely important for us in our first year with representation in India (Indiva Marketing) and we are working closely with tour operators to update their DC itineraries with activities beyond the National Mall and “Discover the Real DC.”

Q In 2017, the visitation from India has grew 32%. What about the statistics for 2018?
With 32% increase in visitation, India has proven to be one of our top growth markets ranking fourth in overseas markets to DC. We see immense potential among Indian travellers and we aim to establish strong partnerships while continuing to market not only the key attractions in the city, but also its dynamic neighbourhoods that reflect the ‘DC Cool’ brand. With the introduction of the Air India nonstop flight in Summer 2017, we anticipate additional growth in the number of visitors from India when we receive 2018 visitation numbers later this year.

Q Besides leisure and business, do you have plan to focus on other segments like FITs, families, etc.?
Leisure and business are our primary segments which includes FIT and family travel. The leisure market continues to remain fluid as we hear more and more visas are being issued for Indian travellers.

We anticipate a healthy growth from India market in the coming years.

Q Which products and services are areas of focus in Washington, DC for overseas tourists?
Apart from the iconic monuments and memorials embellishing the National Mall, Washington DC offers insight into the culture and history of the district through its neighbourhoods. DC boasts one of markets for Washington, DC with tremendous opportunity. China is our number one international inbound market and we have been in the market longer. There are many Indians living in Washington, DC area so there is an extensive VFR (Visiting Friends and Relatives) growth segment. We are committed to the Indian market and are continuously working with Indiva Marketing on how to continue to interface with potential travellers.

Q Besides Delhi and Mumbai, are you focusing on other cities of India?
We work closely with Indiva Marketing to help us identify additional cities in India with potential to travel to Washington, DC. This year, we added Ahmedabad to our roadshow as we learned that a significant portion of the population frequently visits the United States. We will continue to evaluate other cities as we increase our presence within the market