FTAs to Lahaul, Spiti decline post Covid-19 outbreak
After the outbreak of Covid, Lahaul and Spiti has witnessed a shortfall in the arrival of foreign tourists as compared to previous years, reports The Tribune.
Data procured from the Tourism Department shows that in 2021, Lahaul and Spiti had witnessed only 420 foreign tourists, while in 2020, the number was only 155.
The data shows that before the pandemic, Lahaul and Spiti was the favourite tourist destination. In 2019, the district had witnessed 14,948 foreigners, while in 2018, the number was 13,764.
However, after the opening of Atal Tunnel, Lahaul and Spiti has witnessed a considerable increase in the domestic tourist influx. In 2020, the district had witnessed only 4,756 domestic tourists till September 30, while after the opening of the tunnel on October 3, the district witnessed 10,460 tourists till December 31, 2020.
In 2021, Lahaul and Spiti had witnessed 9,60,532 domestic tourists, which was quite high as compared to the previous year when the count was only 15,216.
Tashi Barongpa, Secretary of the Hoteliers Association, Lahaul, said “Covid had spelt doom to the tourism industry, which affected the arrival of foreign tourists to this district. Now the district has been witnessing a good influx of domestic tourists.” He said no enquiries were coming from abroad for room bookings.