Recession in Europe, competition in traditional markets and from Sri Lanka, and a host of other factors have hit tourist arrivals to the State.
The season has been bad compared to last year with rooms remaining vacant even in reputed hotels till December 20, a senior marketing official of a five star hotel chain told The Hindu from Kochi. It had picked up since then, which he attributed to Christmas and New Year celebrations.
Even on the eve of Christmas, rooms were available in hotels and resorts across the State, except in Thekkady and Munnar. Hotels and resorts of the State-owned KTDC registered occupancy of 80 per cent during the peak period from December 23.
Surprisingly, the dip in arrivals did not impact the houseboat sector. South Kerala had been the worst affected with air fares ruling high.
Full report here Hindu