Kenya to review a charter incentive program to boost inbound tourism

The Kenyan government to review a charter incentives program to incorporate low-cost carriers and scheduled flights to boost inbound tourism.

Joe Okudo, permanent secretary at the tourism ministry, said the number of charters has risen from one charter (Condor Airlines) to 10 now, boosting tourism business in the region, which has been affected by negative travel advisories.

“This move will not only strengthen our destination’s brand visibility as a whole in the source markets but increase visitor number. It will allow us to venture into joint marketing initiatives with the airline operator and the travel agents’ consortia,” said Okudo, as stated in local media.

The east African nation has enhanced its marketing campaigns to woo key source markets in the wake of a decline in tourist arrivals caused by a wave of security concerns due to terrorism from al-Shabab and travel advisories issued by countries that provide key source markets.

In the 2017-18 financial year, combined arrivals for July 1, 2017 to June 30, 2018 closed at 1.49 million, compared to 1.39 million in 2016-17, showing a growth of 6.8 per cent, as per statistics from the ministry.

The charter model now only works in Eastern Europe and Nordic countries. The number of charters is expected to increase toward the end of the year. We assume the program will see an expansion to cover the other two international airports in the county for diverse tourism product experience.

The charter will fly Mombasa twice a week, transporting around 500 visitors to the Kenyan coast every week.

“Within the charter period (November, 2018 to March, 2019), Kenya shall have received about 8,000 arrivals into Mombasa, a major boost to the tourist numbers into the region,” said Okudo.

According to the tourism ministry, Poland has continued to grow in market share of visitors into the country. “Last year, we received 11,947 visitors from Poland up from 9,572 recorded in 2016, depicting a 24.8 per cent growth,” he said.