India’s opportunity in wellness tourism

Looking beyond current pandemic problems, wellness tourism has huge potential for Indian tourism in the longer term. Ian Youngman investigates.

In a growing economy where the population is slowly recovering from a pandemic, wellness tourism becomes even more important, as it rejuvenates the body, mind and soul by detoxification provided by various healthcare therapies.

India is one of the true spiritual homes of the modern wellness movement globally with its ancient practices of Ayurveda, yoga, meditation, acupuncture, naturopathy, panchakarma and holistic health.

At a recent conference held by the South Asia’s Travel & Tourism Exchange, SATTE 2021, a session on ‘Wellness Tourism: a big opportunity’ discussed the unexplored opportunities that the wellness segment offers to Indian tourism.

Indian tourism organisations believe travellers from across the globe are now looking at Ayurveda, Yoga and wellness tourism to rejuvenate their mind and body.   Now seen as a necessity rather than a luxury segment, demand has shifted and travellers are looking at preventive treatments to lead a healthy lifestyle.

One of the major challenges in India is the lack of awareness in many tourist segments about the various benefits and therapies under Ayurveda and wellness, beyond what is offered in spa treatments.

The next generation travellers in India are however much more aware of adding wellness tourism as a part of their itinerary. These travellers are usually well educated about wellness, have disposable income and are already living a healthy lifestyle. They are looking for yoga retreats, Ayurveda holidays, and other therapies which offers significant potential for India.

Large corporates in India are also now starting to include wellness benefits for their mid-level to senior-level employees.