Kenya Targets African Tourism to Mitigate COVID-19 Impact

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Kenya Targets African Tourism to Mitigate COVID-19 Impact

Kenya Tourism Board intensifies efforts to market Kenya to the rest of Africa by targeting key source markets in the African region.

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  • Kenya has been a tourist hub for East and Central African markets, relying on its strong air service and higher standards of hospitality.
  • Kenya Tourism Board held a meeting last weekend with tour operators from Uganda, Rwanda and Ethiopia in the coastal tourist city of Mombasa.
  • Tourism in Africa is rated as the fastest-growing market in the world, with travel experts seeing tourism numbers on the continent to have grown at a rate of 8.6%.

Banking on rich and untapped African tourism market, Kenya is now taking serious initiatives to attract tourists from other African states, aiming to hasten tourism recovery after a slump caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Kenya Tourism Board (KTB) has in recent month intensified efforts to market Kenya to the rest of Africa by targeting key source markets in the African region.

Rich with wildlife, historical and cultural heritages, Kenya is among African countries which suffered from COVID-19 pandemic impacts seen from the down turn of tourist arrivals from key market sources of Europe and the United States of America.

Kenya has been a tourist hub for East and Central African markets, relying on its strong air service and higher standards of hospitality for tourists than other countries in East and Central African region.

Taking an advantage of its highly developed air services, hotel and accommodation facilities with well-established tourism and travel base, Kenya is now targeting African visitors to complement and fill a gap caused by the downfall of international tourism.

Kenya Tourism Board (KTB) announced recently that marketing of Kenya as an attractive destination for visitors from the rest of the continent has been intensified after the easing of COVID-19 travel restrictions by a number of African states.

The KTB Corporate Affairs Manager Wausi Walya said that there are immense tourist and travel potentials in both the East African region and the African market which the Board is set to capture through various platforms including the media outlets.

The Board held a meeting last weekend with tour operators from Uganda, Rwanda and Ethiopia in the coastal tourist city of Mombasa.

Kenya will be organizing various trips for African tour operators to familiarize them with scenic attractions in the country, including coastal beaches, wildlife sanctuaries and archaeological sites, Walya said.

“Kenya considers the African tourism market as strategic, with Uganda leading in the number of visitors to this country”, she said.

The moves that KTB is now making would increase tourist arrivals at this time when global tourism is reeling out from the effects of COVID-19 pandemic.

The Board is also planning to host to familiarization trips to several attractive sites in Kenya, aiming to entice the travel trade to sample the Kenyan destination with its immense tourism potential to attract both regional and the African markets.

A special cocktail party was organized for 15 travel and tour operators from Uganda, Rwanda and Ethiopia who have been on a week-long product sampling of Kenya’s popular tourist destinations.

The group of regional tour operators visited key tourist sites of Nairobi, Nanyuki, the Maasai Mara, Tsavo, Diani, Malindi and Watamu on a mission to see the various tourist attractions Kenya can offer to both African and global safari makers.

Tourism in Africa is rated as the fastest-growing market in the world, with travel experts seeing tourism numbers on the continent to have grown at a rate of 8.6 percent over the past years compared to a global average of seven percent.

Kenya Tourism Board had noted that promoting intra-Africa tourism could at the same time catalyze the generation of opportunities within the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) with the need to enhance growth and collaboration between Africa’s tourism destinations to tap into the potential that exists in the continent.

Tanzania and Kenya have supported free movements for regional and international travels after presidents from both neighboring states agreed to enhance regional travel and movement of people.

The African Tourism Board (ATB) is currently working closely with several African destinations to enhance intra-Africa travels through regional tourism platforms.

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