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West Bengal to unveil app ‘Home away from home’ for homestays

The West Bengal Tourism Department is going to come up with an app —“Home away from home” — to boost tourism through homestays reports Tamaghna Banerjee for TOI. Tourists can book homestays by using the app. The app has been planned following the wish of chief minister Mamata Banerjee to popularize homestays for generating employment.

Currently, the state has 1,963 homestays registered with the Tourism Department and there are financial aid and incentives too for them. The number of registered homestays is likely to cross 2,500 soon, said an official. As the plan for the app under homestay tourism is taking a final shape, Tourism Minister Babul Supriyo has already held a series of meetings.

“Tagging of tourist destinations with homestays as far as possible will be done on the app. Even details of the amenities of homestays like free Wi-Fi connectivity, pick up and drop facility, along with tariff will be on display. Even the nearby tourist destinations will be available on the mobile app,” said an official.

During a recent workshop in New Town, Tourism Secretary Saumitra Mohan highlighted the need for homestays in the hills where new hotels require several environmental clearances.

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