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Chartered flight arrivals up in Goa; tourists’ spending dips

The number of chartered flight arrivals increased in the just-concluded tourist season in Goa, but low spending by visitors remained a key concern for the tourism industry. A total of 2,240 chartered flights landed at the Goa International Airport at Dabolim, registering an impressive growth of 30 per cent against 1,645 last year, Travel and Tourism Association of Goa president Savio Messias told PTI. He said the travel budget of tourists was low.

“The season was okay. The number of chartered flight arrivals have increased but the problem lies in spending power of the visitors,” he said. The tourist season began in September last year and culminated last month with beach shacks remaining the main highlight. The shacks are dismantled post the tourist season during monsoon.

The delay in allotment of shacks this time affected the business to a big extent, All Goa Traditional Shack Owners Association’s general secretary Manuel Cardoso said. He said licenses were given to shack operators in November due to which tourist season around Diwali was lost.

“This time the actual season was only between January and March. We lost business because of the delay in allotment of licenses. If shacks are put up at the right time, then (only) proper business could be made,” he said. The allotment of beach shacks was done under the government’s new three-year tourism policy which was drafted recently.