Singapore targets Indian students, techies

The Asian Age.  | nitin mahajan

India, All India

Singapore’s travel and tourism companies are now directly engaging with Indian travelers.

According to statistics of Singapore Tourism Board, India is the 3rd most important tourism market for Singapore, after China and Indonesia.

Singapore: The tourism industry of Singapore is targeting Indian students, the millennials, young IT industry workforce and women to the nation with educative and activity-based tourism on specially designed trips on famous resort island of Sentosa.

Sentosa has also positioned itself as a perfect holiday destination for Indian families with its varied attractions like Singapore Cable Car, extravagant shows like Wings of Time, Madame Tussauds, Universal Studios, mammoth S.E.A Aquarium, Fort Siloso skywalk and lovely beaches.

Speaking to this newspaper, One Faber Group (1FG) director, sales and business development, Patrick Lee, said they were in talks with several educational institutions in India to begin tours specially targeted at students and millennials. “We are definitely keen on attracting the huge students’ population of India to Singapore through specially designed tours for them. Similarly, our host of attractions and activities will draw big number of Indian families to Sentosa in the upcoming summer holiday season,” said Lee.

With one of the lowest crime rates in the world, Singapore is also an ideal travel destination for families and women travellers. “The women and parents with their kids can travel at any time and be safe. There are no hassles of travel as we also have a reliable public transport system, cable car and taxi operations,” Mr Lee added.

Another important target area is the employees of IT industry and the Singapore tourism industry is looking at increased arrivals from cities like Bengaluru, Hyderabad, and Pune, as most of these places now have direct air connectivity to Singapore. With increased disposable incomes and a desire to travel the population is being wooed by the industry.

The tourism sector stakeholders say Singapore can offer a holiday and recreation option to millennials and IT industry employees at a better price than Europe.

They also feel that a shared colonial heritage is likely to prove beneficial for them to attract travelers from India.

Singapore’s travel and tourism companies are now directly engaging with Indian travelers. For instance, One Faber Group, which is one of Singapore’s leading operators of a suite of leisure and lifestyle services with products and services including iconic Singapore Cable Car, Wings of Time and Faber Peak, recently appointed Delhi-based ISA Tourism Pvt Ltd (ISA) as its India market representative.

“Appointing ISA as our India representative will help us in reaching out to new evolving travelers like young professionals, solo travelers and female travel groups. It will enhance 1FG’s brand awareness among the potential travellers from India,” Mr Lee added.

According to statistics of Singapore Tourism Board, India is the 3rd most important tourism market for Singapore, after China and Indonesia. And the stakeholders aim to increase the arrivals from India through targeted and specially catered packages. Indian travelers to Singapore have been constantly rising – from 9.43 lakhs visitors in 2014, it stood at 14.42 lakhs in 2018.

To cater to growing number of visitors, Singapore’s hospitality companies have been adding to the number of hotels and adding interesting facilities to attract more Indian tourists. For instance, Singapore’s leading operator of hotels and serviced residences — Far East Hospitality (FEH) — has been adding new properties specifically targeted at couples, families and upmarket clients.  While its new hotel The Outpost Sentosa is aimed at couples and friends, The Village services families and niche property The Barracks has 40 upmarket rooms and suites in a heritage building. While newly refurbished property Orchard Rendezvous is located in the heart of Singapore’s business district.

“Our hotels in Sentosa, each offers a distinct experience to target and attract specific segments. With a vast majority of the hotels in Sentosa positioned as luxury, we saw the opportunity to come in with a mid-tier proposition to cater to families and business travellers,” said spokesperson from Far East Hospitality.

“Adding 606 keys to the island and placing children at the centre of any vacation, Village Hotel Sentosa offers an experience tailor-made for families and groups. Next, a first of its kind in Sentosa, The Outpost Hotel caters exclusively for adults. The services and amenities it provides have been carefully curated with couples and millennials in mind. Last but not least, to cater to discerning and affluent travellers, The Barracks Hotel offers old school luxury, exquisite service and timeless charm.”, said the spokesperson.