Things are looking up for Bali’s hoteliers; Tanah Lot pictured
Arief Yahya, Indonesia’s tourism minister, said in a statement: “India has become top five markets to Indonesia with the growth rate of 30 per cent, second highest growth rate after China (last year).”
Despite few direct air links between the two countries, arrivals from India last year totalled 485,000. In the first two months of this year, arrivals from India numbered 87,000, higher than the traditional markets of Japan (74,000 arrivals) and South Korea (63,000), according to the ministry’s data.
Commenting on the target of 700,000 arrivals from India this year, Nia Niscaya, deputy minister for tourism marketing development II (Asia, Africa, the Americas and Europe), said: “That is a high target to achieve. With limited seat capacity and direct service (Denpasar-Mumbai provided by Garuda Indonesia), we would like to optimise the available seats by making Singapore and Kuala Lumpur as hubs.”
The strategy to entice travellers to Singapore and Malaysia to extend their stays to Indonesia will be bolstered by the ministry’s Hot Deal packages to Batam-Bintam and Jakarta, as well as culture and heritage tours to Jogjakarta and beach resorts like Lombok.
Meanwhile, promoting destinations beyond Bali continues to be on the destination’s agenda.
“During our recent visit to India, major travel companies (Cox Kings, Thomas Cook India, Yatra, MakeMyTrip and FCM Travel Solutions) told us Bali sold itself and asked us to come up with other destinations to promote. We plan to meet their ne,” Sigit Witjaksana, director of tourism marketing for Southern and Central Asia, Middle East and Africa, said.
Sigit said his department’s marketing budget was 17 billion rupiah (US$1.2 million). On top of that, the marketing communications department has three billion rupiah for digital marketing and ad placements for India.