India has emerged as one of the fastest leading travel, tourism, aviation and hospitality powers in the world. Travel and tourism has become one of the most powerful and dynamic sectors of the Indian economy in the past few years. Holidays have moved up in 'spending' priority, mostly Indian tourists spend on travel, hotels, shopping, food and leisure. Indian travelers who have typically been price sensitive are becoming more aware about the products available in the market and look for good bargains. Shorter vacations planned at short notice are the latest trend among Indian nationals while long-haul destinations are more dominant among the mature affluent Indian traveler. With a wide variety of choices available, the Indian wanderlust is willing to experiment with their holiday itineraries and there is growing appetite for unique holiday ideas and exotic destinations. Moreover, with the increase in per capita income, an Indian tourist can afford to travel internationally and is not confined to domestic travel alone.
India is one of the fastest growing outbound travel markets in the world. Outbound tourism is at 9 million (2009) and is expected to surpass 15 million (2015). [Source PATA]
IATA forecasts India‟s passenger numbers to increase to 300 million by 2030.
Leisure travel is the fastest growing segment increasing on an average by 15% per annum.
To cater to this demand, flights have increased significantly between major cities in India and other countries. The aviation ministry has also taken concrete steps to improve on the infrastructure. New airports are being built and existing ones have been revamped to match global standards.
However, this increase in wealth is not limited to only certain segments of the population. The country is experiencing an economic growth (GDP) of 8% per annum and across the board there is an increase in disposable income and level of consumer spending. In purchasing parity the GDP was USD $ 1.5 trillion (2008).
A strong consumption driven economy that is catalyzing the growth momentum. The population is 1.1 billion people (2nd largest in the world) compared to China at 1.3 billion (largest). In comparison, Europe is at 700 million and the US at 300 million.