Indian domestic tourism surges in 2016

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Indians relax in the coastal town of Kanyakumari, Tamil Nadu
Indians relax in the coastal town of Kanyakumari, Tamil Nadu

India’s domestic tourism sector is booming, with the country witnessing a double-digit jump in domestic trips during 2016.

According to the latest data from India’s Ministry of Tourism, a provisional total of 1.65 billion domestic trips were registered in India’s states and union territories last year, 15.5% more than the 1.43bn recorded in 2015.

But these visits are concentrated in a small number of states – the 10 most-visited states accounted for 84.2% of domestic trips in 2016.

Tamil Nadu (344.3 million visits) was India’s most popular domestic destination last year, followed by Uttar Pradesh (229.6m), Madhya Pradesh (184.7m), Andhra Pradesh (158.5m), Karnataka (129.8m), Maharashtra (115.4m), West Bengal (74.5m), Telangana (71.5m), Gujarat (42.8m) and Rajasthan (41.5m).

The major change compared to 2015 was Madhya Pradesh, the large central state, which jumped from sixth to third in the rankings. West Bengal leapfrogged Telangana into seventh position.

The growth of India’s domestic tourism sector is being driven by the growth of the country’s aviation sector; domestic passenger volumes in India jumped 23.3% in 2016, according to IATA.

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