February 24, Kathmandu: Foreign tourists will be given the same discount on domestic airfares as Nepali citizens. For this, an agreement has been reached between the Tourism Sector Revival Steering Committee, Buddha Airlines, and Yati Airlines Pvt. A meeting chaired by Minister for Culture, Tourism and Civil Aviation Prem Bahadur Ale had formed a steering committee for the revival of the tourism sector on January 16.

The committee has reached an agreement between Buddha and Yeti Airlines to exempt foreign tourists on domestic flights as well as Nepali citizens. Similarly, to help revive the tourism sector, Hotel Association Nepal has decided to give at least a 20 percent discount on hotel room rent to foreign tourists, the committee said.

According to Rajaram Giri, coordinator of the committee, the committee, and the airlines have agreed to give discounts on airfares after complaints of high fares to foreign nationals. He said, “The two airlines have agreed in our effort to give discounts to the tourists coming from abroad like Nepali citizens. We have also increased discussions with other airlines. They will also give discounts.”

In order to increase the contribution of the tourism sector to the economy by coordinating and cooperating with stakeholders, the committee sought policy views with the objective of reviving the industries affected by COVID 19, reviving the tourism sector, exploring, identifying, and promoting new possibilities of the tourism industry and creating employment by creating a conducive environment for investment in this sector.

Similarly, the Committee requested the COVID-19 Crisis Management Center to further simplify the travel criteria by amending the Travel Management Order 2078 BS issued by the Council of Ministers of the Government of Nepal for the arrival and departure of passengers from Nepal as the COVID transition is currently declining. According to Giri, coordinator of the committee, the work has been started to prepare and implement the program as per the policy opinion, advice, and suggestions recommended by the committee.

As per the decision of the committee separate working groups have been appointed to make necessary preparations in seven thematic areas related to the tourism industry.