Singapore’s Push for Indian Tourists: 3 Deals in 3 Days

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In just the first three days of April, Singapore Tourism Board has already dropped three announcements about teaming up with Indian companies, a clear sign of India’s growing significance.

Singapore is making a push to attract Indian tourists. The Singapore Tourism Board has announced a series of partnerships with Indian companies, the latest an agreement Wednesday with fintech firm PhonePe.

The collaboration will allow Indian travelers to conduct transactions in Singapore directly from their Indian bank accounts by scanning a QR code during their visit.

India is one of the fastest-growing tourism markets, and ranks among Singapore’s top five.

The city-state hosted 1.1 million Indian visitors in 2023. That’s still down from 1.4 million in 2019, but the Singapore Tourism Board anticipates reaching 90-95% of its pre-pandemic numbers this year.

To facilitate this growth, the board plans to streamline the tourist visa process for Indian travelers. Moreover, Singapore has also bolstered connectivity between the two countries by establishing direct flights from 17 Indian cities.

Singapore is also boosting its infrastructure to accommodate both tourists and business travelers, with plans to add 9,000 new hotel rooms to the existing 72,000.

Poh Chi Chuan, executive director of exhibitions and conferences at the Singapore Tourism Board, emphasized that Singapore is not only targeting tourist traffic from India but also catering to business travelers, given the growing trade relations and thriving Indian economy.

MakeMyTrip Collaboration

The PhonePe collaboration comes a day after the tourism board’s partnership with Indian online travel agency MakeMyTrip.

Singapore Tourism Board and MakeMyTrip will collaborate on joint activations and campaigns aimed at increasing inbound travel to Singapore.

The tourism board plans to use MakeMyTrip’s market understanding to create travel holiday packages tailored for Indian consumers.

Singapore was one of the top three searched international destinations on MakeMyTrip platform last year, moving up from the fifth place in 2022, said Rajesh Magow, co-founder and group CEO of MakeMyTrip.

Eye on Indian Weddings

Singapore Tourism Board on Monday announced a collaboration with designer Rahul Mishra to highlight Singapore’s offerings for Indian weddings. The partnership is aimed at providing Indians with insight into the island city through an artisanal curated collection.

Speaking on this collaboration, Markus Tan, regional director for India, Middle East, South Asia and Africa at Singapore Tourism Board noted that Indians prioritize weddings and are becoming increasingly selective about crafting distinctive and unforgettable experiences for their guests.

Skift had earlier reported in a feature how Indian weddings redefine extravagance. Talking about how destinations weddings have been gaining popularity, report had stated how countries like Thailand, UAE and European hotspots have been eyeing India’s ultra high-net worth individuals.

Skift Research estimates that a typical Indian wedding at an international destination costs about $215,000.

Leveraging the power of Indian celebrities, Singapore Tourism Board in December had partnered with Bollywood actress Ananya Panday for a 4-episode vlog series. The tourism board said this would unveil a “new, exciting and fun side of Singapore.”

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