In a bid to boost the flagging economy of Goa’s tourist sector, which was badly hit following the Covid-19 pandemic, the Government of Goa is planning to make tourists stay on for a longer time in the coastal state longer. And, in order to make it more exciting and add value to the tourism profile of the state, the Tourism Department is all set to launch helicopter rides, seaplane and amphibious bus services by September-October 2022.
Additionally, the hop-on-hop-off bus service from Panjim is expected to start shortly..
Helicopter rides will be introduced from Old Goa in September-October, for which the helipad was readied last year. A Mumbai-based company has joined hands with a local agency for the management and maintenance of the helipad. The Tourism Department is expecting to earn a revenue of approx Rs 60 lakh per annum from this. The process of obtaining various permissions has already begun, while a private company already made a successful helicopter trial run last month from the Aguada Fort helipad recently.
For seaplane services, you will have to wait till December as the contract with a private company will be signed by then, say officials.
Amphibious bus rides and hop-on-hop-off bus service
Amphibious (buses that run on the road as well as water) bus rides will be started by the end of November 2022. Also, the stalled hop-on-hop-off bus service from Panjim will be resumed soon. Both bus services will be managed by the same operator.
Tourists now have more reasons to prolong their stay in Goa. Services like hot air balloons and bungee jumping have also been launched, but remain inoperative during the monsoons. Tours of the Raj Bhavan had been stopped due to the Covid pandemic, but have now resumed. Monsoon treks will also commence soon. So, those who say sightseeing in Goa can be concluded in two or three days have more reasons to spend more time in Goa.
A new international airport, at Mopa, is also scheduled to open in August this year, and will shorten the amount of time required to travel from South to North Goa.