Acknowledging India as the leading source of tourists, Oman is promoting its latest multiple offerings to Indian travelers.
Steadily increasing their tourism market share, the Sultanate of Oman is marketing its new tourism products in the Indian market. In the past, travel between the two countries has been limited to employment but over the past few years, the destination has witnessed a steady increase in leisure travellers. The fact that in 2017 alone, Oman received 321,161 Indian arrivals, registering a growth of seven per cent, is a testimony to the increased popularity of Oman in India. Further, from January to June this year, the country has already recorded a 15 per cent growth in Indian arrivals as compared to the same period last year, informed, Lubaina Sheerazi, the India representative of the Ministry of Tourism, Oman.
“We recognise and acknowledge the demand from India and other potential markets. As part of the Sultanate’s National Tourism Strategy 2040, the Ministry of Tourism seeks to introduce the sector’s latest developments, services, projects and facilities of the tourism industry,” said Her Excellency Maitha Saif Al Mahrouqi, the undersecretary of the Oman Tourism Ministry.
Oman is introducing various incentives to ease travel between the two countries. The destination has announced a ‘short-term tourist visa’ which would allow the Indian travellers to visit Oman for a period of 10 days for five Omani Riyal or Rs 940. Also, the newly-built Salalah Airport and the revamped, state-of-the-art, Muscat International Airport, will expand the capacity from 12 million to 20 million passengers, further facilitating travel.
One of the most important brand-building activities for Oman has been its association with Bollywood. Film shootings at the destination have given way to collaborations to promote it as a location of interest and increase its appeal among Indian travellers. Other focused areas of Oman include promotion of destination weddings and corporate travel including the meetings, incentives, conferences, and exhibitions (MICE) travel. The country has seen an increase in business tourism with the launch of the Oman Convention and Exhibition Centre in Muscat.
Sheerazi commented, “Being only three hours away and having excellent air connectivity with various cities in India also makes Oman a preferable wedding destination.” It is important to note that Oman Air caters to 11 cities in India with over 161 flights a week.
Oman is tapping into every segment of tourism. New itineraries for different kinds of travellers include a visit to Nizwa (the old capital) for the culturally inclined travellers; guided tours to the Raz al Jinz Turtle Reserve for the wildlife enthusiasts and a host of adventure sports, both soft and hard, at various locations across the country for those who wish to quench their adrenaline.
Writer: Team Viva
Courtesy: The Pioneer