Although the US capital Washington, DC receives more than 100,000 Indian visitors every year, this traffic is set to increase with the launch of a non-stop flight service from the Indian capital New Delhi. The destination is also attracting tourists who fancy a holiday of high-end shopping and fine dining clubbed with educational trips to museums and cultural exposure at various events.
“The tourism industry is one of the fastest growing in Washington DC and India is very important for our economy,” says Destination DC president and CEO Elliott L Ferguson II, at a tourism event held in New Delhi (the Indian capital).
The capital of the United States of America (US), Washington, DC receives 100,000 plus Indian visitors every year. “This traffic is set to increase with Air India’s launch of a non-stop service connecting New Delhi to Washington, DC,” says Ferguson II. “Travelling to the US is now becoming easier. The visa process is also easier now, especially with facilities like e-visa,” he adds.
Indian visits to the US capital have increased 25 pc over 2015, adding 20,000 more visitors than last year. Moreover, in 2016, one in every 12 visitors from India to the US visited Washington, DC.
According to Travel Market Insights Inc., visitors from India to Washington, DC ranked sightseeing, shopping, and visiting national parks and monuments among their top three activities. Washington, DC’s many museums and art galleries, dining and nightlife scene, designer retail along with its iconic monuments and memorials make the city a highly desirable destination.
“The biggest mistake a traveller can make is come to Washington, DC for only a day, see the capitol building and head to another city. There is so much more to do and see,” says Ferguson II. “One good thing about this is a lot of these places are free to visit,” he adds.
There are museums that one can visit without having to pay a fee, cultural festivals that one can attend for no cost, or just visit the parks or art galleries. There are many new ways in which visitors can experience the city. With USD 11.8 billion in development and more than 4,000 hotel rooms in the pipeline, the city is also prepping to host the increasing number of visitors.
For Indians there are many interesting things to do including enjoying shopping and food. “We have our own Michelin Guide, which says a lot about the food scene in the city,” comments Ferguson II.
With the Wharf that opened in October, new hotel chains, sporting venues, events, a visit to the Washington, DC makes the US experience complete, shares Ferguson II.