India experiences a surge in sports tourism

 Tuesday, May 15, 2018 



sportsSports fans are looking beyond cricket while traveling overseas to attend a sporting event. Sports tourism is already a well established business in developed markets and is making inroads in India.



Manmeet Ahluwalia, head of marketing at Expedia India mentioned that it all started with the launch of Indian Primier League which started a decade back following the trend that fans started travelling internally in the country to watch games.



During 2011 ICC Cricket World Cup the trend saw international momentum and it was hosted across three countries – India, Srilanka and Bangladesh.



Ahluwalia said that an interested trend was noted during the 2015 ICC World Cup in Australia and New Zealand, the cricket fans explored these destinations as the most preferred honeymoon or holiday destination.



In accordance with the match schedule many booked their honeymoon  and the bookings rose by 35%.



Indian sports fans are not just interested in cricket but a shift in the interest has been seen for other sporting events like Soccer World Cup or the Olympics  said Karan Anand, head of relationships for travel specialists Cox and Kings.



There was a 10%-12% growth in arrivals to these destinations, when a major sporting event took place.



Alternative sports attracts groups of men on an incentive trip and many in the tourism industry have started to woo these tourist.



Abhijit Mishra, Director, India and Middle East, at KAYAK said that the most of them fall into the high-spending category, stay longer than other tourist categories, are high-calibre and often stimulate other tourism.



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