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Eco-Minded Prince Harry Announces Massive Travel Sustainability Initiative

The Duke of Sussex unveiled Travalyst at a news conference in Amsterdam, a city hit hard by over-tourism

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Prince Harry, Travel, Sustainability
FILE - Britain's Prince Harry delivers a speech as he attends Dr. Jane Goodall's Roots & Shoots Global Leadership Meeting at St. George's House, Windsor Castle in England, July 23, 2019. VOA

The eco-minded Prince Harry announced a massive travel sustainability initiative Tuesday in partnership with key service providers that’s aimed at bettering the practices of the global industry amid an ever-increasing number of travelers.

Prince Harry, Travel, Sustainability
The eco-minded Prince Harry announced a massive travel sustainability initiative Tuesday in partnership with key service providers that’s aimed at bettering the practices. LifetimeStock

The Duke of Sussex unveiled Travalyst at a news conference in Amsterdam, a city hit hard by over-tourism. He was joined by representatives of his partners, Booking. com, TripAdvisor, Visa, China’s largest travel company, Ctrip, and the Ctrip-owned fare aggregator Skyscanner.

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The long-term initiative is focused on tackling the travel industry’s impact on climate change, improving wildlife conservation and protecting the environment in top tourist spots. It will also look at ways to better serve local communities through tourism dollars. (VOA)

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State Tourism Ministers Demand Reduction Of GST On Hotels

State Tourism Ministers on Monday demanded the reduction, simplification and rationalisation of various taxes and levies, including the Goods and Services Tax (GST) to boost tourism in the state

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Travel, Tourism, GST, Reduction, Hotels
A scenic view of Abad Hoel, Kumarakam, Kerala. Wikimedia Commons

State Tourism Ministers who met in the Kerala capital on Monday demanded the reduction, simplification and rationalisation of various taxes and levies, including the Goods and Services Tax (GST), in the tourism and travel industry to attract tourists and face global competition.

At the end of meeting here, a resolution moved by Karnataka Tourism Minister C.T. Ravi, said the reduction in GST on hotel rooms is essential to attract more tourists.

The resolution also sought measures to reduce high airfares which worsen the tough competition faced from other global destinations.

“The Tourism Ministers’ conclave 2019 at Kovalam, Kerala, notes with concern that the GST Council of India has imposed 28 per cent GST on hotel room tariff over Rs 7,500 and 18 per cent tax on rooms with tariffs between Rs 2,500 and Rs 7,500. This tax rate is high compared with other countries,” said the resolution adopted unanimously.

Travel, Tourism, GST, Reduction, Hotels
The resolution also sought measures to reduce high airfares which worsen the tough competition faced from other global destinations. Wikimedia Commons

“We express concern over the high airfares during peak season and festival periods, which are forcing holiday-makers to opt for economical destinations. Besides, unexpected closure of certain airlines has led to increased airfares, while minimal air connectivity with 2-tier and 3-tier cities has only compounded the problem,” it noted.

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Another resolution moved by the Odisha Tourism Minister Jyoti Prakash Panigrahi said setting up Regional Tourism Councils will facilitate periodic interaction among different states and enhance collaboration.

“We resolve to jointly promote our tourist attractions across the world in order to give a cutting edge to our campaigns,” said the second resolution.

The meeting also expressed concern over the high and varied inter-state tourist vehicle taxes and called for their rationalization across all the states to ensure seamless travel experience. (IANS)