“We have come back almost to 2019 levels. Perhaps the broader recovery to 2019 levels in terms of revenues, occupancies and room rates would be achieved by the end of this season or the next,” said MP Bezbaruah, secretary general, HAI.
“As per various industry reports, business is coming back to 2019 levels. Earlier, the expectation was that it would happen by 2023. But now it should be sooner. Qualitatively, there is a difference. It is currently driven by domestic tourism, leisure tourism and staycations,” he added. HAI includes industry representation from chains such as Indian Hotels Company (IHCL), The Oberoi Group, Radisson Hotel Group and Lemon Tree.
The association is also seeking an industry status from states. States such as Rajasthan, Maharashtra and Karnataka have granted an industry status to hotels over the past one year and HAI is hoping more states would follow suit.
States such as Gujarat, Punjab and Orissa have also extended some benefits to the hotel industry. “We went through huge problems.
So, if we are given an industry status, which is a state subject, our members will get certain incentives whether it is power tariff at the industry level which is quite a discount, or other benefits. Some governments are forthcoming. We have states that have already declared that they have accorded an industry status,” said KB Kachru, VP, HAI, and chairman emeritus and principal advisor, South Asia at Radisson Hotel Group. “The key issue is although the industry status has been accorded, the relevant benefits have not been given by all the states. Maharashtra and Rajasthan have accorded, declared and even advertised this.
So, if somebody can run a profitable, sustainable business, they would choose those states first. We are sure other states will do it too since it’s in the interest of people and domestic tourism,” he added.
Kachru said government should look at MICE (meetings, incentives, conferences and exhibitions), international tourism and focus on agood delivery for local tourism.