The number of Indians that visited Switzerland during the 2017 summer season increased by over 25%. Publicity by Indian film star and Switzerland Tourism ambassador Ranveer Singh is believed to be partly responsible.
Switzerland Tourism had engaged the services of Indian film star Ranveer Singh last November to boost the country’s visibility in the subcontinent. The objective was to convince more young Indians to visit the Alpine nation.
It appears to have had an impact, with a 25.5% increase in visitor numbers and 27.1% increase in the number of overnight stays in summer, according to figures released on Tuesday by the Swiss Federal Statistical Office.
“The increase in the overnight stays during the summer season (May to October 2017) of Indian guests is also due to the campaign with Ranveer Singh,” a Switzerland Tourism representative told swissinfo.ch.
The increase in visitors could be worth just over CHF30 million ($30.4 million), if one considers that an Indian tourist spends on average CHF240 a day in Switzerland.
May and June are the months when the bulk of Indian tourists choose to visit Switzerland. However, more were convinced to brave the cold during the winter season (November to April) with an 18.2% rise in visitors and 17.5% more overnight stays than the previous year. However, Switzerland Tourism was reluctant to credit Singh for the winter boost.
“The proportion of the Indian population under 35 years of age is 60%. This younger, often well-educated target group is increasingly demanding outdoor and winter holidays in Switzerland,” said the representative.
For decades, the Alpine nation has lured Indian tourists thanks to free publicity in the form of films that showcased its landscape in song and dance sequences. However, this trend is waning, resulting in fewer young Indians being exposed to Switzerland. By engaging 32-year-old Singh, who has over seven million Twitter followers, the tourism authorities hoped to sell Switzerland as a trendy destination for fun-loving youngsters with money to spend.