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Thursday, 12 November, 2020, 15 : 45 PM [IST]

MTDC partners with Airbnb to promote unexplored destinations in the state

Maharashtra Tourism Development Corporation (MTDC) is partnering with Airbnb to promote homestay and bed & breakfast (B&B) tourism in the state. By promoting homestay tourism, this partnership will encourage travel to lesser-known destinations and will enable inclusive community-led tourism in the state that will further enhance economic prospects.

Under the agreement, MTDC and Airbnb will:
? Promote nearby travel-to destinations in Maharashtra that are off the beaten track and offer a unique experience to travelers
? Onboard three MTDC properties within Maharashtra that will offer travellers differentiated offerings including farm stays
? Conduct webinars and workshops to train homestay hosts and B&B owners on Airbnb’s enhanced cleaning protocol—the first overarching standardised guidelines for cleaning and sanitisation in the home sharing industry — to support hosts in advance of reopening communities for travel.

The partnership furthers both parties’ commitment to support a sustainable tourism ecosystem, while highlighting current and upcoming tourism destinations in the state. Through knowledge sharing and training workshops with hosts, the partnership will also enhance the potential of tourism to create jobs and sustain livelihoods for local communities and will spotlight unique properties as more travelers explore stays near metro cities.

Announcing the partnership, Aaditya Thackeray, Minister for Tourism, Environment & Climate Change and Protocol, Government of Maharashtra, said, “Maharashtra is an ecologically and culturally rich state and offers travellers unique travel experiences. We are committed to improving community-driven hospitality that is sustainable and offers travelers accessible, affordable and quality tourism. Safety is also key. With Airbnb, we will strengthen the ecosystem for the growth of homestays and B&Bs in the state, to revive tourism growth in the coming months. We appreciate Airbnb’s effort in helping us promote tourism in Maharashtra”.

Amanpreet Bajaj, General Manager (India, Southeast Asia, Hong Kong and Taiwan) at Airbnb, said, “This partnership is a valuable opportunity to drive rapid demand growth towards domestic tourism and to support economic recovery. Airbnb has always been committed to highlighting unique destinations that are off the beaten track, and to ensure that economic benefits of tourism reach as many communities as possible. We are proud to be working with MTDC, and to support their vision. Rebuilding trust in travel is a long-term mindset and requires a collaborative effort between governments, tourism authorities and private players. We have witnessed commendable efforts put in by the Government of Maharashtra and MTDC towards this endeavor and are fully committed to support them”.

According to Airbnb’s own search trends and data, destinations within Maharashtra such as Karjat, Igatpuri, Alibag and Panchgani remain widely searched for options with their stunning scenery, including in the backdrop of the Western Ghats, and offer authentic cultural experiences for travellers.

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