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Saudi Tourism designates India as a prime source market with 50% surge in visitation

Saudi Tourism Authority (STA) is participating at the ongoing Outbound Travel Market (OTM) at the Jio World Convention Centre in Mumbai. The event serves as a platform focused on strengthening ties between the travel trade and key stakeholders from the world’s fastest-growing tourism destination.

STA’s continued presence at OTM Mumbai is a testament to its burgeoning tourism industry. A delegation comprising of 20 key Saudi stakeholders from prominent associates from various sectors including DMOs such as Red Sea Global, AlUla, Diriyah, DMCs, Hotels, Tour Operators and Airlines, are present at the event to collectively showcase the diverse offerings and initiatives driving Saudi’s tourism landscape. Their presence underscores STA’s commitment to fostering scalable partnerships with the Indian trade association.

To further reinforce Saudi’s commitment to India, the STA delegation plans to conduct a four-city networking event in Mumbai, Ahmedabad, Bengaluru, and Delhi, engaging with travel agents and tour operators to foster partnerships and strengthen business ties.

Alhasan Aldabbagh, President – APAC Markets, Saudi Tourism Authority, emphasised the significance of the Indian market, stating, “As we continue to diversify our offerings, India has proved to be a major accelerator. We are committed to make India the top source market, aiming to welcome 7.5 million Indian visitors by 2030. To facilitate this, we made visa procedures very easy by introducing e-Visa options for Indians holding US, UK and Schengen visas with stamped proof of entry. Applying for visa-on-arrival has become easier than ever as it can be processed at 10 visa centres across India.”

A Stopover visa can also be applied 90 days in advance to visit Saudi for up to 96 hours at these visa facilitation centres when flying with Saudia or Flynas. “Saudi has also enhanced connectivity with Air India, Air India Express, Indigo Airlines, Spice Jet, and Vistara,” Aldabbagh added. The air connectivity has surged reaching a capacity of 2.8 million seats in 2023, a remarkable 31% increase since 2019. Flights from 12 major hubs in India to Riyadh, Jeddah, and Dammam signify the robust lifeline of connectivity that fortifies successful tourism initiatives.ince 2022.

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