Supporting the revival of the tourism industry in Sri Lanka, the European Union Delegation to Sri Lanka has agreed funds to help strengthen the country’s medical and wellness tourism capacity. In deciding how these funds will be spent, a Wellness Tourism Stakeholder Project has been launched, under the guidance of Sri Lanka Tourism.
Sri Lanka Tourism says that wellness and nature are high on the priority list for travellers to Sri Lanka. This includes Ayurveda and yoga. It also recognises that the wellness traveller generates at least five times more earnings than the standard tourist.
Under the project, key stakeholders will decide how to develop capacity at wellness tourism resorts, hotels and training providers.
With the assistance of external experts, the authorities are focusing on product and infrastructure development, training and guidance to the SME sector and targeted marketing and promoting investor opportunities.
Sri Lanka will have to compete with regional wellness destinations such as Kerala and Bali, destinations that have been focusing on health and treatment-based experiences for many years.
Medical tourism is also being considered, but the country still needs to be equipped with experienced medical travel agents, international standards and certifications and the logistical network to provide for the needs of medical travellers before and during their visit.
Sri Lanka has resumed the visa on arrival facility for international tourists, except travellers from 10 countries: Afghanistan, Pakistan, Syria, Nigeria, Ghana, Ivory Coast, Cameroon, Myanmar, Nepal and North Korea.