Prime Minister Narendra Modi's recent visit to Lakshadweep has significantly boosted tourism interest in the islands. Online travel company MakeMyTrip recently reported a staggering 3,400% increase in searches for the Union Territory.
The surge comes amidst a controversy involving Maldivian politicians' derogatory remarks about PM Modi's visit, which the Maldives government has since disavowed.
EaseMyTrip suspends Maldives flights
In a show of support for India, EaseMyTrip, a competitor of MakeMyTrip, suspended all Maldives flight bookings. Standing in support of India, Co-founder Nishant Pitti took to X, stating, "In solidarity with our nation, EaseMyTrip has suspended all Maldives flight bookings."
The company has also begun a visit Lakshadweep campaign by #ChaloLakshadweep. In his post on X, he said, "Water & beaches of Lakshadweep are as good as Maldives/Seychelles. We at EaseMyTrip will come up with crazy special offers to promote this pristine destination that our PM Narendra Modi has recently visited!
Other travel platforms witnessing growth
Besides MakeMyTrip, Ixigo and travel platforms such as TravClan also reported significant increases in searches and enquiries for Lakshadweep. Ixigo saw a 2,900% rise, while TravClan observed a 3x surge in hotel searches, especially for Agatti Islands.
Notably, Fintech giant Paytm also witnessed a 50x surge in searches for travel to Lakshadweep on its online platform. Earlier today, The company announced a flat 10% discount on flight tickets to Lakshadweep using the promo code 'FLYLAKSHA'.
Paytm Spokesperson said, "As a leader in mobile payments and the most preferred platform for travel bookings, we are excited to play a pivotal role in boosting domestic tourism to the tropical haven of Lakshadweep. With the best prices guaranteed and exciting discounts, we are ensuring a smooth and enjoyable travel booking experience for users.”
How much it costs to travel to Lakshadweep?
Travel to Lakshadweep requires a Protected Area Permit (PAP), which can be obtained online. The best time to visit is from October to February, with popular destinations including Andretti, Agatti, and Minicoy.
Costs for a round trip from Delhi to Kochi start at Rs 12,000, with additional charges for inter-island transfers, accommodation, and activities. EaseMyTrip offers packages starting from Rs 22,999.
Lakshadweep's popularity has been on the rise, especially among social media influencers, since the rise in tensions between India and Maldives.
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