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Last Updated : Sep 11, 2019 02:17 PM IST | Source: Moneycontrol.com

Australia banking on T20 World Cup for more Indian tourists, targets half million arrivals in 2020

An average stay by an Indian tourist in Australia could be close to two months and spends could be around A$ 5,000 (around Rs 2.5 lakh)

Maryam Farooqui @farooqui_maryam

Fancy a visit to Australia? 2020 would be the right time especially for all the cricket enthusiasts to visit the land of the Kangaroos.

The T20 World Cup, for both men and women, will be held at the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG).

Tourism Australia is focusing on women’s T20 World Cup to bring women’s sporting tournaments into the limelight.

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Talking to Moneycontrol, Nishant Kashikar, Country Manager, India and Gulf, Tourism Australia, said, “2020 will begin with Women’s T20 World Cup. The International Cricket Council (ICC) has set two major goals. First, they want this event to be a major game-changer in the history of women’s sports.”

“Second, they want to set a world record for attendance for any women’s sporting event. The previous world record was set in 1999, which was when the US had played China in women’s soccer final. At that time, some 90,000 fans had attended the game in California. Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) has the capacity of 1,00,024 and the finals will be played on March 8 which is International Women’s Day,” he added.

Along with Women’s T20 World Cup, the Men’s T20 World Cup will be played next year between October and November. The finals will be played on November 15, which coincides with Diwali.

Besides, India is going to play a four-test series in Australia after that. This means that the Indian team will be in Australia from October to January.

This is why Kashikar expects cricket to bring about an incremental of 30,000-40,000 visitors in 2020.

In terms of the number of arrivals, he expects half a million next year and one million by 2025.

While cricket will be an attraction next year, Indians are already preferring to travel to Australia. India is currently the fastest-growing inbound market for Tourism Australia.

“We (India) have been the fastest-growing market for two consecutive years. We had five consecutive years of double-digit growth in arrivals; spend with arrivals growing at CAGR of 16 percent over the last five years, and spends growing at 18 percent over the last 5 years,” said Kashikar.

He added that the total outbound travel industry out of India has grown at eight percent and India arrivals have grown at 16 percent.

An average stay by an Indian tourist in Australia could be close to two months and spends could be around A$ 5,000 (around Rs 2.5 lakh), pointed out Kashikar.

According to data provided by Tourism Australia, Indian visitors spent A$ 1.7 billion (Rs 8,300 crore approximately) on their Australian trips for the year ending March 2019, which is an increase of 12 percent over the previous year.

Has there been an impact of the economic slowdown on arrivals from India to Australia?

Kashikar suggests that there has been a slight impact.

“Last year we recorded an 18 percent growth in visits of Indians to Australia. That growth has slightly slowed down to 11 percent but we are still seeing growth,” he said.

He said that the growth is supported by factors like number of Indian students studying in Australia, which presently is around 90,000.

Then there are almost 7,50,000 Indians living in Australia.

“The Indian diaspora in Australia has doubled. Plus, we have factors like the Australian dollar which has been relatively stable in comparison to other currencies and the bilateral relations between India and Australia have been stable,” he added.

Kashikar also noted that there is a shift that they are witnessing when it comes to the traveler’s profile.

“While we see the traffic to be dominated by the middle age affluent Indians, we are witnessing a shift where a lot of young Indians, and solo travelers are coming to Australia for a holiday. The demography, comprising the middle class and the young, is currently 300 million and is expected to grow to five million by 2025. Which is why we believe that the outbound travel market in India has a lot of potential, and will continue to grow,” he said.

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First Published on Sep 10, 2019 10:37 pm

tags #Lifestyle

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