Chennai: Vacationers are shifting their Sri Lankan holiday plans to Indonesia, Thailand and Maldives with travel portals witnessing a 30% increase to the Asian destinations.
“We are beginning to see a shift in inquiries away from Sri Lanka and travellers are asking for alternate destinations such as Thailand (which just introduced visa on arrival) and Kerala in India. The change would be 20%,” said Karan Anand, head, relationships, Cox and Kings. Trip curator Pickyourtrail observes that Bali has higher interest as it has more things like Sri Lanka such as - adventure, culture, lesiure – followed by Maldives, which is leisure oriented.
Vacationers are also willing to stretch their budget by nearly 10% to accommodate the shift to neighbouring destinations.
Cox & Kings’ Anand adds that while the domestic travel costs remain the same, airfares to Kerala have risen by 10-15%, indicating more people visiting Kerala.
Travel fintech startup Sankash received over 250 last minute applications for loans to Thailand.
“Those who have planned for premium trips in Sri Lanka are going for budget trips in neighbouring countries in South East Asia. And these are for trips in May. Those who are due to travel in June are waiting for the situation to get better,” said Akash Dahiya, CEO, Sankash.
Self-drive car rental companies are also seeing a rise in requests, scrambling last minute to accommodate limited inventory of cars.
Aditya Loomba, joint managing director, Eco Rent a Car-EuropCar said, “However, we at Eco Rent A Car-Europcar is seeing 40%-45% of traction for International Locations like Thailand, Dubai, etc and for local destinations like Goa, Andaman, a few hill stations like Coorg, Kasauli and Mussoorie.”