Manali Hotels To Open From October

Manali: Faced with a raging pandemic  and heavy losses in the hospitality sector the Hotels Association of Kullu-Manali has decided to open up the hotels from October 01. The decision was taken at a meeting of the executive members of the association at Manali today.

A majority of the members expressed  their willingness to open their hotels.

Anup Thakur, president of the Manali Hotelier Association said that we have taken a unanimous decision to open hotels of Kullu Manali for tourists from October 01.As most of the members of association were keen to restart their business for survival. He requested the district administration and tourism Department to provide a crash course to all stakeholders in Kullu and Manali about preventive measures for Covid.

Manali by Sanjay Datta

Earlier the entry of tourists in Himachal Pradesh was banned in March to check spread of novel coronavirus. The Tourism Department  issued a standard operating procedure (SOP) with which the tourists are allowed to enter Himachal with conditions such as a report by an ICMR-accredited laboratory not earlier than 92 hours, testing negative for COVID-19 and a prior hotel booking of at hotel for minimum two days

Tourists will also have to register online with the state government before entering the state.

In view of the rapid rise in Covid-19 cases across the country, the stakeholders in hotel and restaurant business in Himachal Pradesh have advised the state government to start tourism activities only in September or October. They also suggested that a mechanism to monitor people coming from other states should put in place before resuming tourism in the state.

Tourism is a major contributor to Himachal’s economy. As on December 31 last year, the state had around 3,679 hotels and around 2,189 home stay units, apart from the government facilities. It is also largest employment generating industry of the state, which saw 17.21 million tourists in 2019, up from 6.55 million in 2004.

Sanjay Dutta, an engineer by qualification but is a journalist by choice. He has worked for the premier new agency Press Trust of India and leading English daily Indian Express. With more than a decade of experience, he has been highlighting issues related to environment, tourism and other aspects affecting mountain ecology. Sanjay Dutta lives in a village close to Manali in Kullu valley of Himachal.

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