Sri Lanka tourism loses some bookings for winter; counts on regional tourism traffic

August 15 (LBO) – Sri Lanka’s tourism industry has seen some cancellations from Europe for this year’s peak winter season following an outbreak in local violence, top industry officials said.

Some cancellation of bookings have been reported for this November-December season, though others are withholding reservations and adopting a wait-and-see, Prathap Ramanujam, Secretary to the tourism ministry told LBO on Tuesday.

Of the cancellations and withheld bookings, most have been from Europe, Ramanujam said. There is a hold-on kind of situation and we will review it in a dew days.

On Monday, Pakistan’s ambassador to Sri Lanka narrowly escaped a bomb blast in the capital Colombo, while fighting between the government and Tamil tiger rebels intensified in the North.

Most of the fighting has been contained in the North and East of the country, though targeted attacks have been carried out recently in other parts of the island and security stepped up.

The British High Commission also reviewed its travel advisory to the country on Tuesday to warn all its nationals not to travel to the North and East of the country.

Attacks in Colombo may be just one-