CT Throwback: From India’s e-Sim To Visa-Free Countries, 12 Travel Highlights Of 2023 For Indians

From launching the first e-Sim to Indian citizens travelling to some countries visa-free, here are travel highlights of 2023.

by Shreya Ghosh
CT Throwback: From India’s e-Sim To Visa-Free Countries, 12 Travel Highlights Of 2023 For Indians

2024 is knocking at the door and it feels so surreal thinking that we are just 10 days away from bidding adieu to 2023 and celebrating the new year. This year has been quite revolutionary for the travel and tourism sector. If not the exact pre-pandemic levels, the industry has surely witnessed a surge and improvement in comparison to the past couple of years. With more and more globetrotters exploring the world and global events, 2023 saw some amazing travel highlights. India witnessed the introduction of new beginnings and loads of infrastructural developments took place as well. Let’s take a look at the noteworthy highlights in the travel sector for Indians.

These Are The Biggest Travel Highlights Of 2023

1. Visa-Free International Countries

Exploring different countries and witnessing their cultures has never been this easy. In the year 2023, many countries temporarily scrapped the mandatory requirement of presenting a visa for Indian nationals. Iran, Malaysia, Sri Lanka, and Thailand initiated this rule this year itself. Kenya will become a visa-free country from 2024. Indian visitors will no longer need to go through the long process of getting a visa to visit these international countries.

2. Impact Of G20 Summit

Taking to the X (formerly Twitter) platform, Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) shared some glimpses of the G20 Summit in Delhi.

New Delhi’s Bharat Mandapam hosted the G20 Summit on September 9 and 10 this year. It was an incredible opportunity for our country to host the world-renowned prestigious event visited by eminent personalities from all around the world. The G20 Summit had a spectacular impact on India’s travel sector. Some of the positive results are an increase in demand for accommodation facilities, a surge in searches for hospitality services, a spike in international tourism, and India’s potential to become a famous global destination. The lasting influence of the global event reflected perfectly with the uplift in various demands.

3. Surge In The Travel Sector During ODI Cricket World Cup

Travel Highlights
Picture credit- Subrot Sikdar

We Indians worship cricket like a religion and our love for the sport crossed all boundaries after India hosted the ICC Men’s ODI World Cup. For the first time in the history of the Cricket World Cup, a total of 12,50,307 spectators visited the stadiums to enjoy the all live matches. Cricket fans travelled from one city to another to enjoy the matches. Not just domestically, people flew in from foreign places to watch the World Cup live in the host nation. With a tremendous spike in tourist footfall, the demand for tickets, hotels, and searches simply skyrocketed.

Also read: CT Throwback: 7 Best Restaurants In Kolkata We Loved In 2023

4. Technology Enhancement At Bengaluru Airport

Picture credit- Canva

Bengaluru’s Kempegowda International Airport saw the installation of automated baggage drop machines recently and this has totally changed the game of the issue of overweight luggage. This new technology does not allow any passenger to carry even an extra 100 g than the specified weight by the airline.

This airport decided to initiate a trial run of an advanced security check process that has the ability to scan and examine belongings without taking them out at trays separately. The authorities finalised this beginning by using the Computer Tomography X-ray machine.

5. India’s 1st e-Sim

Picture credit- Canva

2023 is the year when Indians began to finally bid adieu to carrying physical SIM cards, paying costly roaming fees, and all the trouble while exploring somewhere international. Sensorise Travel eSIM is India’s first eSim and it provides conventional telecom international roaming options at an affordable budget. Indians can use it in over 190 countries.

6. Rules For Travelling In Express Trains At Night

Travel Highlights
Picture credit- Canva

If you are travelling on express trains such as Rajdhani Express, Vande Bharat Express, and more at night, there are some specific rules by the Indian Railways that you need to follow. Do not talk loudly on the train after 10 PM. Avoid switching any light you wish at night. Use night lights when required. You can only order food online and get it delivered by 10 PM.

Also read: CT Throwback: 8 Best Homestays Of 2023, The Perfect Retreats In India We Loved!

7. Travelling With Pets On Indian Railways

Travel Highlights
Picture credit- Canva

Your pet can tag along with you while travelling with Indian Railways but there are some rules to follow. You will need to book First AC tickets for you and your furry friend. The cost of pet tickets depends on their size and weight. It is a mandate to give a rabies vaccine to your pet. Also, make sure to carry the veterinarian certificate. 24 to 48 hours before catching the train, get a fitness certificate from the veterinarian.

8. Travel Highlights: Launching New Vande Bharat Trains

Travel Highlights
Picture credit- Wikimedia Commons

2023 saw the inauguration of many Vande Bharat Express connecting different cities of India. The following routes were flagged off this year:

  • Visakhapatnam – Secunderabad Vande Bharat Express
  • Mumbai CSMT–Solapur Vande Bharat Express
  • Mumbai CSMT–Sainagar Shirdi Vande Bharat Express
  • Rani Kamalapati (Habibganj)–Hazrat Nizamuddin Vande Bharat Express
  • Secunderabad–Tirupati Vande Bharat Express
  • MGR Chennai Central–Coimbatore Vande Bharat Express
  • Ajmer–Delhi Cantonment Vande Bharat Express
  • Kasaragod–Thiruvananthapuram Vande Bharat Express (via Kottayam)
  • Howrah–Puri Vande Bharat Express
  • Dehradun–Anand Vihar Terminal Vande Bharat Express
  • New Jalpaiguri–Guwahati Vande Bharat Express
  • Mumbai CSMT–Madgaon Vande Bharat Express
  • Patna–Ranchi Vande Bharat Express
  • KSR Bengaluru–Dharwad Vande Bharat Express
  • Rani Kamalapati (Habibganj)–Rewa Vande Bharat Express
  • Indore–Nagpur Vande Bharat Express
  • Jodhpur – Sabarmati (Ahmedabad) Vande Bharat Express
  • Gorakhpur–Lucknow Charbagh Vande Bharat Express
  • Udaipur City–Jaipur Vande Bharat Express
  • MGR Chennai Central–Vijayawada Vande Bharat Express
  • Chennai Egmore–Tirunelveli Vande Bharat Express
  • Kacheguda–Yesvantpur Vande Bharat Express
  • Patna–Howrah Vande Bharat Express
  • Ranchi–Howrah Vande Bharat Express
  • Puri–Rourkela Vande Bharat Express
  • Ahmedabad–Jamnagar Vande Bharat Express
  • Banaras–New Delhi Vande Bharat Express

9. Underground Metro Construction

Taking to the X (formerly Twitter) platform, DEVESH SHAH (@DEVESHS67071822) shared snippets of the ongoing underground metro construction of Pune.

The construction is currently going on at a fast pace. Major parts of the project are completed at the moment and some parts of the final stages are left. According to plans, the metro services till Swargate will begin by February 2024.

10. India-Middle East-Europe Economic Corridor

Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) shared a video of sharing his remarks on the India-Middle East-Europe Economics Corridor.

Highlights of this year also include updates about the newly launched India-Middle East-Europe Economic Corridor. A memorandum of understanding was signed by countries at the G20 SSummit 2023. One of the two corridors will be connecting the Gulf to India. Another one will connect Europe and the Gulf.

Also read: Indian Railways Likely To Start Vande Bharat Train From Mumbai To Jalna Via Aurangabad; Details Here

11. Air India Introduced New Uniform

Air India announced its new uniforms for the pilots and cabin crew recently. Indian designer Manish Malhotra designed the transforming uniforms for the airline. For the cockpit crew, the uniform is a black double-breasted suit with a print whose inspiration is Vista. The female cabin crew are wearing ready-to-wear sarees paired with block heels and pearl earrings.

12. Chenab Rail Bridge Construction

Hilal Shah (@hilal18shah01) took to the X (formerly Twitter) platform to share some pictures of Chenab Bridge.

Dharot’s Chenab Rail Bridge is the world’s tallest railway bridge. Union Railways Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw inspected this Bridge on March 26, 2023.

These are the biggest travel highlights of this year.

Cover Image Courtesy: Canva

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