SriLankan Airlines works harder to lure Indian tourists


SriLankan Airlines has announced it has redoubled its efforts aimed at bringing more tourists to Sri Lanka from India, in support of the country’s tourism industry.

“We are fully focused on our responsibility as the National Carrier to support our own tourism industry, although the airline itself has a thriving business in transit passengers traveling through our hub in Colombo,” SriLankan Airines employee said.

According to the airline, its most recent promotion in India offers discounted fares throughout the month of February for Indian travelers below the age of 27 to enjoy exciting holidays in Sri Lanka, with one condition–travelers must spend a minimum of three days in Sri Lanka.

“In the past, travel advisories in European countries have led to drops in arrivals from some of the island’s traditional tourism markets, although tourists have never been targeted in the country’s conflict,” the airline added. “The airline has invested heavily in recent years in publicizing Sri Lanka as a destination in India, drawing attention to its value for money shopping, wide range of cuisine, superior hotel and convention facilities, cultural wonders, and diverse climates and landscapes.”

SriLankan Airlines claims it is the only international carrier to have 100 flights per week to India, serving 11 cities there – New Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai, Trichy, Trivandrum, Cochin, Bangalore, Hyderabad, Goa, Coimbatore and Calicut.

Senaka Fernando, Regional Manager Indian Subcontinent & Maldives, said: “

More than 100,000 Indians visited in 2007, a number that Sri Lanka Tourism says is expected to double in the next two years. India is the largest country of origin of tourists to Sri Lanka, having replaced our earlier traditional markets in Europe every year since 2005,” said Senaka Fernando from SriLankan Airlines Indian operation.