Bangladesh lifted the travel restrictions for the foreign tourists – imposed due to the Covid-19 pandemic – Monday (26 September).
"Issuing visas to foreign tourists was halted for a long time due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Finally, restrictions on foreign tourists willing to enter Bangladesh have been lifted from Monday (September 26)," said State minister for civil aviation and tourism Md Mahbub Ali during a press conference at the Parjatan Bhaban on the occasion of World Tourism Day.
The decision was taken after a meeting of the National Technical Advisory Committee on Covid-19, said the state minister for civil aviation and tourism.
Monday (26 September), a letter signed by the Professor Dr Mohammod Shahidullah, president of the National Advisory Committee on Covid-19, said foreign travellers can be allowed in the country on condition of showing full vaccination certificates and complying with health guidelines prevailing in the country.
Professor Dr Mohammod Shahidullah told TBS, "We have informed the concerned ministries and departments about our decision. Now it is their responsibility to implement."
In this regard, Chief Executive Officer of Bangladesh Tourism Board Abu Tahir Muhammad Zaber said in the press conference, "We will inform our foreign missions about lifting the ban. This will restart the arrival of leisure tourists in the country."
Syed Mahbubul Islam Bulu, an inbound tour operator, told TBS, "Until now, citizens of specific countries used to get on-arrival visas in a few categories. But leisure tourists did not get visas."
Hotels offer discount on Tourism Day
Overcoming the adverse effects of Covid-19, the country is observing World Tourism Day in a festive atmosphere today. The theme for this years' celebration is "Rethinking Tourism".
Bangladesh Parjatan Corporation (BPC) has organised various programmes at the Parjatan Bhaban in Agargaon to mark the day.
The BPC will bring out a colorful procession from Parjatan Bhaban at 7:30 am on this occasion. Besides, there will be a 30% discount in hotels and motels of BPC today, said a press release from BPC.
Varieties of Bangladeshi foods, drinks, sweetmeats and pies along with foreign cuisines will be served in the open space on the ground floor of the Parjatan Bhaban and in the stalls in front of it from 7 am.
The food festival will be open to the public and the foods will be sold at low prices. There will also be live cooking shows.
A rickshaw rally will be held at the Gulshan-Baridhara Diplomatic Area under the joint initiative of Bangladesh Tourism Board and Tourist Guide Association on the occasion.
BPC's travel unit will also operate three city tours for students and underprivileged people at low cost and free of charge respectively.
To mark the day, a week-long beach carnival has been organised to attract more tourists to the world's longest beach in Cox' Bazar. The Cox's Bazar district administration and the Beach Management Committee will launch the tourism fair and beach carnival from Tuesday morning.
On occasion of the festival, more than 500 hotels, motels, guesthouses, and cottages in the city are offering 30-70% discount.