Rajeev Kale, President & Country Head, Holidays, MICE, Visas- Thomas Cook India, writes that new demands for travel was spurring growth and both domestic and international travel were looking up, compared to the previous year.

“Our holiday demand is up by over 35% for the upcoming Easter weekend, with Indians displaying increased appetite for extended/ smart weekends by clubbing public holidays and taking an additional day or two off from work to get a 6-7 day break to short and mid-haul destinations. Thomas Cook India’s research highlights that Indians are quintessential workaholics and the trend of shorter and frequent trips within India and overseas has become a norm, and not just with travellers not from metros like Chennai, but increasingly Tier 2 cities like Coimbatore, Madurai, Trichy.

Given the clash of election dates in Tamil Nadu, several of our customers have planned to take a break post voting, availing of our special Election discount offer.

Our data also indicates a significant increase for the Easter weekend from Bengaluru, Delhi, Mumbai. In addition, Pune and Hyderabad are growing strongly. We are seeing high uptake from India’s young working millennial segment, DINKs and ad hoc groups of friends. Off road/self-drive trips are also seeing strong and sustained growth from metros of Mumbai, Bengaluru, Delhi and Chennai.

Thomas Cook India has witnessed a spike of 40% for domestic holidays and over 30% for short haul international destinations compared to last year. With the shift from one annual vacation to multiple such long/smart weekend getaways, Indians are showing strong interest in domestic options like North East, Pondicherry, Kerala, Andamans, Goa & hill stations like Lonavala, Coorg, Kodaikanal, Uttarakhand; international packages include favourites like Dubai- Abu Dhabi, Singapore-Thailand-Malaysia, Mauritius. Exotic and newer destinations like Japan-Korea have seen uptake of over 45%, also Egypt, South Africa, Jordan and East Europe’s Czech Republic-Hungary-Croatia.

In addition, considering IPL fixtures on Easter Sunday being Royal Challengers vs Chennai Super Kings and Sunrisers vs Knight Riders, we are seeing growing interest for cricket crazy fans from around the country.

Easy visa/ visa on arrival destinations are heading the leader-board this Easter weekend, especially with last minute bookers and so a surge in bookings for Bali, Thailand, Sri Lanka, UAE, Singapore, Malaysia, and Thailand.”