Travel Reviews & Interviews
New Delhi, Aug 14 : The Tourism Ministry has tied up with the Google's video-sharing platform, YouTube.com to showcase the country's tourism potential.
The Ministry, known worldwide for its "Incredible India" campaign, have made promotional videos available to the YouTube, the eighth most trafficked website.
From the Himalayas to the sun kissed beaches of Goa, or the boat ride in the backwaters of Kerala are now just a click away.
Launching the videos on the YouTube here today, Tourism Secretary Shilabhadra Banerjee said the venture would help boost India's image aboard.
"This is to maximise the reach of the Incredible India campaign worldwide. It is important to not only project what India was and what India is today, but what attractions it holds for the people of the world. I think it is an excellent example of using technology for projecting India's image abroad," Banerjee said.
At present 18 film and other videos have been uploaded on the site.
Shailesh Rao, Managing Director, Google India said the arrangement, the first of its kind with any government, would help boost India's tourism income.
"Videos that have been placed here are wonderful depiction of the wonder that India is today. And we really hope that we can play a small part in helping the world to understand how attractive India is as a place... a destination for visiting," Rao said.
According to a recent survey, YouTube.com has about 48 million users in the US itself. YouTube, started in early 2005, was taken over by Google in October last year.
Apart from giving the net users a vast bank of videos from across the globe, it also gives registered users, option to upload unlimited number of videos.
Tourism arrivals to the country have increased by 78 percent and foreign exchange earnings by 122 percent over the last five years.
In the first seven months of 2007, foreign exchange earning through tourism stood at 4.51 billion dollars, which is 18.2 percent increase from 3.95 billion dollars from same period last year.
The World Travel and Tourism Council has predicted India's annual growth rate at 8.8 percent over the next decade, the highest in the world.
India is targeting 10 million tourist arrivals by 2010.