The Ministry of Tourism is planning to establish a new affordable tour package scheme to counter the slowing down of domestic tourism figures amidst the ongoing COVID-19 situation.
To continue encouraging internal travel, a tour package with a saving of between 20 to 30 percent on comparable independent travel will soon be on offer.
Top Sopheak, spokesman for the MOT, revealed that the ministry is currently working with hospitality outfits within the private sector, including hotels, resorts, restaurants, tour operators and transport companies, to facilitate the initiative.
“The development of the affordable tour package aims to promote sustainable and responsible domestic tourist growth. We want to encourage Cambodians to visit at least one tourism destination a year [such as Siem Reap] and newly established tourism destinations,” he explained.
If successful, the scheme’s revenues will contribute to the finances of the entire tourism industry and have a positive effect on the fortunes of the national economy. The packages will also endeavour to link tourism activities to environmental and cultural education plus promote humanitarian activities within local communities.
Currently, the COVID-19 outbreak has cost over 3,000 lives worldwide, predominantly in China, and there is no indication that the virus will stop spreading imminently. The final cost to Cambodia’s tourism industry has yet to be calculated, but experts are warning that last year’s figures of 6.6 million international visitors (which generated $5 billion for the economy) and 11.5 million domestic tourists will be significantly reduced.