Kerala, with its equitable climate, lush greenery and cool monsoon, is fast emerging as the prime destination for wellness tourism
1. Tourism in Kerala has come a long way.
The future of the tourism industry is seeing a definite emerge in the health and wellness tourism sector. People have become more aware and our taking proactive steps to lead a healthy life. More and more people have started travelling to different places to proactively pursue activities that maintain or enhance their personal health and well being by seeking unique, authentic or location-based experiences/therapies. They are becoming more knowledgeable, informed, sophisticated and demanding. The high cost of treatment, long waiting time, less insurance coverage in developed countries and the attitude of people to spend quality holidays with the aim of improving health is the main reason for the increasing trend in medical tourism.
While tourism in India is one of the major contributors to the country’s GDP, we have still a long way to go to realise our full potential. The global medical tourism market is estimated to reach a market value of $40 billion by 2020 and growing at a CAGR of 17% during the forecast period. Out of this, the Indian medical tourism market is expected to grow from its current size of $3 billion to $7 – 8 billion by 2020.
Kerala’s tourism campaign needs a thoughtfully devised strategy. Better infrastructure, hassle-free process of medical visas, marketing and promoting the state at international level are some of the important factors to be worked upon going forward. There is definitely a major scope for improving the wellness tourism in the state and as stakeholders it’s our responsibility to work towards this common goal.
KERALA’S EDGE AS THE PERFECT DESTINATION FOR WELLNESS TOURISM
P Neelakannan is group COO, KIMS, Kerala.