People, Travel

High Costs Hinder Maritime Tourism

High Costs Hinder Maritime Tourism
High Costs Hinder Maritime Tourism

Maritime tourism, especially in northern Iran, has so far failed to realize its potential. To remedy the situation, merely adding passenger vessels and establishing transportation terminals for sea travelers will not suffice; proper road networks, seafood restaurants on the seaside, cruise ships, recreational facilities and equipped hotels are essential.

Whether expansion of inter-provincial traveling on the northern coastlines of the country is on the agenda or just transfer of passengers to and from Iran and Caspian Sea littoral countries, the first challenge facing the investor is cost and benefit.

According to TINN, the Caspian climate, strict safety and security regulations and high costs of purchasing quality ships are some of the factors discouraging investors from injecting money into the sector.

The bureaucracy involved in applying for loans further dissuades investors.

The government provides financial support in the form of loans through Port and Maritime Organization, although the repayment policy for the funds is not quite clear.

Furthermore, oppressive western-imposed sanctions have only served to repel investors.

Therefore, the best available option for development of maritime tourism in Iran’s northern coasts is to capitalize on the benefits of domestic sea travelers by swiftly improving infrastructure and establishing more cruise routes across the Caspian Sea. Optimizing the services to meet the needs of domestic and international tourists is, without doubt, a necessity.