Gangtok, June 17
Homsestay Association of Sikkim has thanked and welcomed the decision of the government for Mega Home Stay project under which 1000 homestays will be built by the Government in attractive locations. Each home will have three rooms and other amenities. It was recently passed by the assembly.
President of Homestay Association of Sikkim Jigmee Dorjee Bhutia has said we are grateful towards Chief Minister, P.S. Golay for envisioning the Mega Homestay Project for Sikkim. With the announcement of the Mega Homestay Project in the State Assembly, the CM has laid the foundation to provide a sustainable, eco-friendly means of livelihood for many families in Sikkim. This project will greatly benefit entrepreneurs in Sikkim who are looking to build a new homestay and earn a livelihood through tourism. It also has the potential boost rural tourism in Sikkim in a big way with many new homestays being built in rural locations.
While General Secretary of the association Pintso Gyatso Bhutia shared we have to play more bigger role to make optimum benefits from the projects to ensure the project success, a well thought out execution plan could be created after taking into consultation all relevant stakeholders including travel agents, homestay owners, architects, etc. This would result in a comprehensive plan with inputs from different people specializing in different fields. It is also important that a lot of focus is given towards “Marketing” of the homestays. During the earlier homestay program (about 8 to 9 years back), many homestays were built with Government aid but there was no plan to promote the homestays once they were built, resulting in huge investments but very little return. To avoid such a situation this time around, the Association requests that Marketing be made a key component of the project and a well thought out plan be chalked out to promote these homestays once they are built.
The Mega Homestay Project could be a big game changer for the tourism industry in Sikkim and the Homestay Association of Sikkim promises to extend every support possible to the Government to make this project a huge success they believed.
It was informed today during the presser which also had a presence of Karma Thutup, Swarna Lata Gurung, Abhishek Rai Executive Members of the association and Tshering Thendup Bhutia
Publicity Secretary of the association.
Must tell here the government has envisioned that these 3000 rooms even with an occupancy rate of 80% for 365 days, can generate more than Rs 175 crore per annum. 80 % occupancy: 2400 x 365 days x Rs 2000 per room = Rs 175.20 crore per annum and as per our past experience one home stays are earning nearly 4 lakh per year in an average but the problem is that there are people who are running their business in the name of homestays which need to be checked and strict guidelines should the to qualify as the homestay shared Pintso Gyatso Bhutia, General Secretary of the Association.
It will also provide direct employment to 9600 persons (4 persons per room x 2400) and indirect employment (4 times the direct employment) to 38400 persons as per the government plan.