DELHI: The government’s move to ban currency notes of Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 and associated curbs on ATM and bank functioning will cause chaos in the travel and tourism industry and inconvenience inbound tourists, industry experts said.
“It is a very big step for the economy but has taken everyone off guard. The move is likely to cause a huge amount of uncertainty and will disrupt transactions, especially for smaller hotels, restaurants and food & beverage operations, which accept cash payments,” said Aashish Gupta, consultant CEO of the ?Federation of Associations in Indian Tourism & Hospitality, reports The Economic Times.
The government’s decision, aimed at fighting corruption, black money, terrorism and counterfeit notes, was announced by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in a televised address on Tuesday evening. ATMs won’t be operational for the next two days and banks will be closed on Wednesday.
“While the move is laudable and will facilitate electronic payments, it is inconvenient for tourists holidaying in the country who might be carrying local currency,” said Sharat Dhall, president of travel portal Yatra.com.
The two denominations of currency notes will continue to be accepted in some places until November 11. These include booking counters for railway tickets and government buses, airline ticket counters and automobile fuel stations operated by state-owned oil companies.