Initiative is to help local people earn an additional income

Sankar Radhakrishnan

Conditions apply


Each home-stay

will have to set aside at least two rooms as accommodation for tourists.

Need to have

bedrooms with attached toilets, wardrobes, cots and mattresses that meet specific standards, clean bed linen of a reasonable quality, 24-hour supply of hot and cold water in bathrooms.

Thiruvananthapuram, July 31

As part of its efforts to offer tourists a unique experience, Kerala Tourism is working on a new scheme to encourage the development of home-stays.

The scheme is intended to facilitate the creation of high quality home-stays, said Mr B. Suman, Director, Kerala Tourism. The objective is to give visitors a comfortable place to stay and also offer them a first-hand experience of life in the State. At the same time, the home-stay initiative is intended to help local people earn an additional income, he explained. In five years, Kerala Tourism expects to have 1,500 home-stays with around 5,000 rooms.

Revised Guidelines

Kerala Tourism, which had initiated a scheme to grant approval to home-stays, is now developing a revised set of guidelines for home-stays. Once the revised guidelines are introduced, the Government support for home-stays will be bolstered, Mr Suman said.

For instance, Kerala Tourism will provide marketing support and financial incentives for home-stays.

Similarly, the draft version of the revised guidelines state that Kerala Tourism will support training programmes for home-stay operators and will also assist them in obtaining loans for converting their houses into home-stays.

A support cell to provide guidance and assistance to home-stay operators is also envisaged as part of the revised scheme.

The draft version of the revised guidelines also outlines a number of conditions that home-stays will have to meet in order to be approved by Kerala Tourism. For example, each home-stay will have to set aside at least two rooms as accommodation for tourists. The revised guidelines also state that no home-stay can have more than four rooms as tourist accommodation.

Home-stays applying for approval under the revised guidelines will also need to have a number of other facilities such as bedrooms with attached toilets, wardrobes, cots and mattresses that meet specific standards, clean bed linen of a reasonable quality, 24-hour supply of hot and cold water in bathrooms and so on.

Approval for home-stays will be given by district-level committees, while a State-level committee will oversee the implementation of the scheme.

(This article was published in the Business Line print edition dated August 1, 2006)
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