Kenya records increase in tourist arrivals by air and sea

Kenya records increase in tourist arrivals by air and sea

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A view of Diani Beach and Spa at Kenya's Coast. PHOTO: FILE

Mombasa,KENYA:Kenya’s tourism industry is experiencing positive growth trends.

Data released by Kenya Tourism Board (KTB) shows arrivals of Tourists between January and September 2016 rose by 12.50 per cent, to 983,876 compared to 874,544 recorded a year ago.

The robust surge in tourist numbers can be attributed to marketing strategies and incentives initiated by the Ministry of Tourism and the Kenya Tourism Board.

According KTB, total international arrivals for January to October 2016 by air and sea closed at 729,682 compared to 628,345 in 2015, illustrating a 16.1% increase.

Best performing markets include USA, UK and India with Uganda and China displacing Germany and Italy from the traditional top five spots.

The US has overtaken the UK as the leading international tourists’ market source, industry data shows. 

Majority of the visitors to Kenya in the Jan-Oct window travelled for holiday (75%) followed by business and conference reasons (13%) then VFR (7%), transit (1%) and study (1%). 

Early this December, 438 tourists and crew disembarked from a luxurious cruise ship MV Silver Cloud after it docked at the Mombasa port.

“Majority of the tourists were from the traditional source markets in Europe, 50 from the UK, 49 from US, Australia 28, Canada 13. Others were citizens of India, Hungary and Brazil,” says KTB.

As at October 2016, Uganda, Nigeria and Ethiopia had surpassed their 2011 benchmarks.

This follows Kenya’s recent partnership with Rwanda and Uganda on a 100$ uni-visa to encourage borderless tourism in East Africa.

Kenya continued rebound was affirmed by the recent 5-trophy sweep at the 23rd annual World Travel Awards.

Kenya was lauded as having Africa’s leading National Park and cruise port; is Africa’s best meetings and conference destination; has the best Tourist Board for the 5th year running and boasts of the leading beach destination, Diani.

The diversification of the country’s tourism package to include sports and conference tourism makes it a high-ranking business tourism player with infrastructural and hospitality capabilities.