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Tourism shows signs of revival but the low footfall of foreigners is a concern

After a lull of almost two years due to the Covid pandemic, trekking, mountaineering, and hotel industries in Uttarkashi and hotel industries in Uttarkashi district have started showing some signs of revival. Almost every hotel in the district received advance bookings for Char Dham Yatra, which starts On 3rd May 2022. Trekking agencies are also busy receiving domestic tourists. The trekking and mountaineering season started on April 1.
However, tour operators are still waiting for an increase in the number of foreign tourists as they contribute nearly half of their income. "Every agency is receiving around 20 to 25 advance bookings and inquiries for May. This is a good sign, said Jayendra Rana, president of Garhwal Himalaya Trekking and Mountaineering Association, Uttarkashi. Rana further said, "But, the pandemic is not over yet. So, the number of international tourists is very few. Till 2019, we used to get more than 25 to 30 foreign groups during peak months (April to June). This year, we've received only 4-5 inquiries so far. We are hopeful that the situation might improve post-monsoon." Trekking operator Bhagwat Semwal, said, "After facing losses of over Rs 5 crore due to the pandemic, the trekking and mountaineering industry in Uttarkashi is looking up this year."
"Intrusion of outside trekking agencies from large cities like Delhi and Mumbai has become a new threat. Despite opposition, the administration has added several such agencies in its single window system portal, which was originally used to link tourists from local operators,'' he added. Shailendra Matura, president of Uttarkashi Hotel Association, said, "Most of the hotels are fully booked for May, and we are getting advance bookings. we are hopeful for the tourism industry's revival this year."

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