Products of Tk 4.5cr sold at tourism fair
Sales at the Dhaka Travel Mart, a three-day international tourism fair that concluded yesterday, were up about 40 percent to Tk 4.50 crore this year from a year ago.
Tour operators, hotels, and airlines sold a large number of tourism products that beat their targets in the exhibition organised by the Bangladesh Monitor, a travel publication, at the Pan Pacific Sonargaon hotel in Dhaka.
About 15,000 people visited the fair and most of them are prospective tourists, said Kazi Wahidul Alam, chairman of the Dhaka Travel Mart 2018.
“People's disposable income has increased significantly in recent times and this has been reflected by the sales of tourism products,” said Alam, also the editor of the Monitor.
Airlines such as state-run Biman and private carriers US-Bangla, Novo Air, and Regent Airways received a good response and sold tickets worth about Tk 3 crore for local and international destinations, according to the organisers.
Among the foreign participants, the Nepal Tourism Board, the Tourism Authority of Thailand, and the Sri Lanka Tourism Promotion Bureau received good orders. Md Rakibul Islam, a sales executive of SriLankan Airlines, said it is expecting a good business from Bangladeshi tourists.
Forty-eight foreign organisations displayed their products and services in five pavilions and 60 booths.
On the concluding day, a seminar on the prospect of river-based tourism in Bangladesh took place where Shajahan Khan, shipping minister, Md Nasir Uddin, chief executive officer of Bangladesh Tourism Board, and a number of tour operators spoke.
Raquib Siddiqui, chief editor of the Monitor, said Bangladesh could be an ideal destination for this kind of tourism, but no effort has been made so far to project this unique feature of the country.
Tour operators said they provide Tk 20 crore in taxes and fees every year to the forest department but receive no support from the government organisation for their trips to the Sundarbans, the most attractive destination among the tourists who want to enjoy the river-based tourism in Bangladesh.
The Bangladesh Tourism Board and Biman Bangladesh Airlines were the event's airline partners while US-Bangla the title sponsor.