Myanmar promotes alternatives to ease strain

Tourists can get discounts on rates in rainy season

Myanmar is increasing efforts to develop new destinations in the country and promote travel during rainy season in an effort to make tourism more sustainable.

The plans fall short of offering incentives to hoteliers and travel companies to develop destinations outside of the key hubs Yangon, Mandalay, Inle and Bagan. But authorities hope they will help resolve capacity issues.

“People can arrive in Yangon, spend some time sightseeing, then move on to destinations such as Pha-an, which has lovely hot springs and some unique local hotels,” suggests Kyi Thein Ko, secretary general of the Myanmar Tourism Federation. “The [tourism] ministry is now also promoting Min Tak in Chin state, which is excellent for trekking.”

Tin Nwe Wynt, a marketing manager at the federation, said they are also marketing travel during the “green season”, or rainy season, when tourists can get 20% to 50% discounts off room rates.

Tourism in Myanmar skyrocketed when travel restrictions were lifted two years ago, putting increasing strain on key destinations. Yangon in particular has limited hotel capacity and room rates are now among the highest in South-East Asia.

TTG Asia

[pictured: Limestone landscape, western foothills of the Dawna Range near Pha-an; photo by Doron]

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