The advent of the COVID-19 pandemic in March 2020 hit tourism boards in India. During the three waves of the pandemic, around 21.5 million people in the tourism industry lost their jobs. As a result, the tourist arrivals in India went down by 93% during the first wave, 79% during the second wave, and 64% during the third wave.
With the COVID restrictions lifted, the government and tourism boards hope to improve the tourism sector. The government has lifted visa restrictions for foreigners for hassle-free travel. Also, the state tourism boards are collaborating with the best travel influencers from across the country to improve tourism. And, influencer marketing has turned out to be an ideal formula.
Post the COVID-19 lockdown, the Madhya Pradesh tourism board started an influencer-based campaign themed “Intezaar Khatam Hua.” This campaign aimed to build confidence among travel influencers and promote the monsoon attraction and caravan tourism of Madhya Pradesh.
The tourism authority of Madhya Pradesh planned two to five days of caravan road trips, each one from Indore and Bhopal. A travel influencer visited different destinations within the state for each trip to promote tourism.
Starting from Indore, the caravan road trip covered destinations like Sailani, Omkareshwar, Maheshwar, Mandu, Janapav, Vanchu Point, Jam Gate, Choral Dam, and Patalpani. In addition, the trip also touched locations like Pench, Patalkot, Tamia, Pachmarhi, Madai, Tawa, Bhimbetka, and Amargarh Falls from Bhopal.
The best travel influencers traveled to the destinations mentioned above on caravan road trips and demonstrated comfortable journeys while enjoying the natural landscapes. In addition, the influencers documented the trip as a travelogue, and the Madhya Pradesh tourism board also launched a film on their social media channels.
Kerala Tourism flagged off “My First Trip 2021” after COVID restrictions were lifted in the state. This travel initiative targeted domestic tourists, and the ten best travel influencers were a part of this program. The itinerary was for five days, during which the influencers created exclusive content for the Kerala tourism board.
With this new trip campaign, the travel influencers promoted tourism in Kerala. They convinced travel enthusiasts to visit God’s Own Country and experience Kerala’s art, culture, popular activities, and cuisine. Out of 10 travel influencers, four were from Mumbai, three from Delhi, and one from Ajmer, Vizag, and Hyderabad.
The Principal Secretary of Kerala Tourism Board, Rani George, flagged the new travel campaign “My First Trip 2021” which started on March 25, 2021, and concluded on March 29, 2021. The influencers shared the content on social media platforms like Twitter and Facebook with the hashtag MyFirstTrip.
The My First Trip travel campaign took the travel influencers across different destinations in Kerala in branded cars while keeping the pandemic protocols in mind. They followed five different itineraries within Kerala. The influencers visited destinations like Kollam, Thrissur, Vazhachal, Malakkapara, and Athirapally.
In a bid to revive the tourism post lockdown, the tourism authority of West Bengal started a social media blitz with the best travel influencers. The tourism department collaborated with travel influencers to boost the social media presence of tourism.
The West Bengal tourism board hired travel influencers for two years on a contractual basis. They used social media to highlight cultural events like the Durga Puja Carnival and visited tourist spots within the state. The WB Tourism Board’s social media account has been revamped, and new accounts have been created.
The travel influencers provided content in travel blogs, documentaries, and pictures of popular destinations in West Bengal. These professionals wrote various travel blogs that were uploaded on the social media channels of the West Bengal Tourism Authority. The influencers had to post 10 tweets and four posts on YouTube and Facebook daily.
The Maharashtra tourism board has started a tourism influencer campaign that gives travel influencers once in a lifetime opportunity to explore the unexplored places in the state. The name of the campaign is “Create Your Own Story” and aims to promote tourism in Maharashtra post the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Tourism Authority of Maharashtra is partnering with the best influencers across travel, food, adventure, and lifestyle categories. The interested travel influencers will have to register themselves on the official website of the Maharashtra Tourism Board and get a chance to build an association.
The travel influencers must have at least 30K followers on their Instagram channel, and they should be active on a majority of social media platforms, including Facebook, YouTube, and Twitter. In addition, the influencers must deliver 3 Instagram reels, 3 Instagram posts, and 15 Instagram stories daily.
After the COVID-19 protocols were lifted, the Tamil Nadu Tourism Authority roped in 10 travel influencers from different states of India to promote tourism. These 10 influencers from other states like Maharashtra, West Bengal, Gujrat, and Uttar Pradesh visited Tamil Nadu landmarks and lesser-known destinations. The travel campaign was for a 10-day period. During this time, the travel influencers wrote about their experiences during the trip on the social media channel of the Tamil Nadu Tourism Board.
To give new dimensions to the tourism sector post-COVID pandemic, the tourism sector of Gujrat organized a Bloggers and Influencers Meet at Gandhinagar on December 1st, 2021. The program was chaired by Gujrat Tourism Corporation Limited in collaboration with the Government of India. This was the first time any such meet was organized on such a large scale, and travel influencers from all over India participated in the meet.
During the meet, the Secretary of Gujrat Tourism, Harit Shukla, offered valuable information to the travel influencers about different destinations within the state. The bloggers and travel influencers present during the meet were asked to visit different destinations in Gujrat to promote tourism. The influencers were further asked to depict the vibrant culture of Gujrat on their social media channels in the form of videos and blogs. After the meet, the travel influencers were invited to visit different tourist places like the Statue of Unity, Mandavi Beach, Science City, and Kutch Ranostav.
During the visit to these tourist locations, the travel influencers shared their thoughts on their social media handles like Twitter and Facebook.
The scintillating coastline of Karnataka beckoned female travel influencers from different parts of the world to converge at Mangalore to join the Women Blogger Travel Program. All-female writers and travel influencers embarked on a memorable journey for a unique experience of the cuisine, art, culture, and tradition of Karnataka.
On the occasion of International Women’s Day and to revive the dying tourism after the Covid aftermath, Karnataka Tourism Authority launched the Women Blogger Travel Program on March 1, 2021. It was a six-day program that took the female travel influencers on an exciting journey to explore the coastal areas of Karnataka and much more.
The women influencers were greeted warmly by the Director of Karnataka Tourism Board and other stakeholders partnering with the travel program at Mangalore International Airport. The group kicked off the journey by visiting the famous Kudroli temple at Mangalore, followed by a hearty lunch at Shetty Lunch Home.
During the trip, the travel influencers visited the Crafts Boutique to see the paintings and metalwork by the locals. The participants then got their first taste of the sea breeze during the visit to Kapu Beach to explore the panoramic view of the Arabian Sea. The day’s grand finale was a spell-binding Yakshagana performance across Maple Beach.
The day of the Women Blogger Travel Program finally concluded with a traditional coastal dinner. Food was served at Fisherman’s Bay Beach Café on banana leaves, and the influencers thoroughly enjoyed the local delicacies. During the six-day program, the women travel influencers visited different destinations like Maple Beach, St Lawrence Minor Basilica, Bhagvati Nature Camp, Varanga, Manipal, Kasarkod, and Gokarna, among others.
The border tourism in Jammu Kashmir is boosted after the Covid lockdown is lifted, and the cease-fire from the neighboring country Pakistan has been on hold for more than a year. To increase the footfall of tourists, the Tourism Board of Jammu Kashmir and the Indian Army are organizing the Explore Gurez event.
The tourism department is inviting the best travel influencers from all corners of the country to promote the valley and put it on the tourism map of Kashmir. It’s a five-day event that will rope in eight influencers to explore the valley and embark on different activities like trekking, rafting, fishing, and other forms of adventure sports.
According to an army official, the travel influencers will explore the locations within the valley through their digital cameras and upload the same on social media channels to boost tourism in the state. Also, a seven-day Jash-e-Gurez festival will be started to promote tourism in the valley. Tourism promotion will bring peace and prosperity, but it will also boost the socio-economic development of Gurez.
As the states in India begin lifting travel restrictions post-pandemic lockdown, the tourism board is now collaborating with travel and social media influencers to promote tourism. From the private companies like Novotel Hotels, Indigo Airlines, and Airbnb to the state tourism boards like Madhya Pradesh and Gujarat, everyone runs campaigns on social media channels to woo travelers and tourists. These campaigns focus on the safety features to remove the myths surrounding travel post-pandemic.
More than 21 million people in the tourism industry lost their jobs during the first three waves of the Covid-19 pandemic. Tourism in India was severely affected, which dropped by 93% during the first wave.
Numerous state tourism boards like Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat, and Karnataka are working with travel influencers to boost tourism. The influencers were asked to visit different destinations and upload images and videos on social media to promote tourism.