Mysore/Mysuru: The hospitality sector of the city which had hit rockbottom following COVID-19 induced nationwide lockdown in March, has begun to look up, with the sector slowly hitting the comeback trail.
Subsequent to the phased lockdown relaxations, life in the city is slowing limping back to normalcy and so also is the hospitality sector, which is showing signs of recovery with gradually increasing number of hotel bookings.
Though domestic and international tourists are yet to arrive in the city in considerable numbers, tourists from across the State and neighbouring States are visiting the city in significant numbers, with the city limping back to normal life.
There are 405 lodges and other residential facilities in the city, with a total of about 9,500 rooms. Post lockdown relaxations, most Hotels have recorded 10 to 15 percent room bookings since June.8.
Mysuru Hotel Owners Association President C. Narayanagowda said that the demand for rooms has shown a marked improvement after the KRS was reopened for tourists last week.
Noting that although room bookings have begun to pick up, he said that the online bookings is not on expected lines and this has been a cause of worry for hotel and lodge owners.
Pointing out that tourists from other States are yet to start arriving in buses or taxis, he said that tourism is yet to pick up pace as air, train and inter-State bus services are yet to resume in full scale. Also, the Government’s announcement that Dasara would be celebrated in a simple manner this year in the wake of Coronavirus spread, seems to have dampened the spirit of visitors.
Besides, there is less movement of software professionals and other techies, who spend time and money on tours and travels, as they are forced to work from home due to the COVID-19 pandemic, he said.
Continuing, Narayanagowda said that it will take at least six months for tourism in the city to return to its pre-lockdown levels.
Stating that it is extremely important for the hotel industry to withstand the losses for six more months in order to survive, he reiterated that it will take more time for the industry to recover and return to pre-lockdown levels.
Maintaining that although Bar & Restaurants, Clubs and Recreation Clubs have reopened recently, the business has not yet picked up as yet, he said that in general, it can be said that it will take a few more months for hotel and tourism sectors to reach their earlier levels of business.
Contending that barring weekends, many hotels of the city are having poor business on week days, with people still scared about the spread of COVID-19 contagion, he observed that the revival of the hotel and tourism industry mainly depends on the arrival of domestic and international tourist footfalls in the city.