If I am on a holiday and traveling on a budget, I always prefer a bed and breakfast (B&B) stay. I love these unique places one can unearth, which are budget friendly, and yet gives one the feeling of being well looked after? Who says the best of hospitality can come from 5-star hotels?
A Bed & Breakfast stay in India can mean anything from heritage stays in Indian havelis, to a stay in the lap of nature in the tiniest of the hutments, with generous dosage of home cooked food, ready travel tips, and a guided tour of the local stores. Throw in a dash of warm hospitality from the hosts, and what you have is an adventure and experience of a lifetime.
So what makes a good Bed & Breakfast place in India? Government of India Ministry of Tourism (H & R Division) has guidelines for Bed & Breakfast/ homestay establishments. Would you believe that one clause for an establishment to be declared an Incredible India Bed & Breakfast/ Homestay will be that owner has to reside on the same premises? That reason being, these establishments must seek ‘to provide a clean and affordable place for foreigners and domestic tourists alike including an opportunity for foreign tourists to stay with an Indian family to experience Indian customs and traditions and relish authentic Indian cuisine.’
As places to stay goes, this segment of hospitality sector is gaining popularity in India. Said Nathan Blecharczyk, co-founder and chief technology officer of Airbnb, ‘We are seeing a lot of momentum in the Indian market and today we have 18,000 properties in about 100 different cities across India… The Indian economy is growing quite fast and by 2020, it is expected that the Indian travel market is going to be worth $40 billion. India is a pretty big and exciting opportunity.’
Says a report by India Brand Equity Foundation, ‘Tourism in India has significant potential considering the rich cultural and historical heritage, variety in ecology, terrains and places of natural beauty spread across the country… The World Travel and Tourism Council forecasts Indian tourism sector to grow at annual average growth rate of 7 per cent over the next ten years.’ Given these facts, and a rising number of startups operating in the area of hotel aggregation, hospitality industry’s reach in India has jumped a notch higher for the common man. And that’s’ where these B&Bs have an important role to play.
So next time you are planning a travel, why not give these unique places to stay a try? Who knows what treasure trove of experience you will open!
- Here’s where to search for Bed & Breakfast places in India:
- TripAdvisor India Bed and Breakfasts
- Conde Nast Traveller India’s 20 most charming B&Bs
- Bed and Breakfasts in India
“Wherever you go, go with all your heart.” -Confucius