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Kenya Records 91% Growth In Tourism Arrivals

by Ndungu Brian
Kenya Records 91% Growth in Tourism Arrivals

Kenya recorded a 91pc growth in the number of international visitors arriving in the country between January – August 2022.

This is according to data released by the Tourism Research Institute which stood at 924,812 as compared to 483,246 recorded in the same period in 2021 

The upsurge in the arrival numbers is attributed to the vaccination drive undertaken by the government of Kenya which resulted in the reduction in Covid-19 cases during the period which registered steady growth.

This improvement is an indication of the continued growth in trust for the Magical Kenya destination, which can be credited to renewed marketing efforts by the Ministry of tourism as well as confidence in the country’s efforts to contain Covid-19.

During an event held to release the performance of the sector’s results for the period between January – August 2021, Cabinet Secretary for Tourism and Wildlife Najib Balala said that the 91% increase translated to Kshs. 167 Billion revenue compared to Kshs. 83 Billion in the previous financial year which indicates that we are on an upward trajectory.

Tourism & Wildlife CS Najib Balala (c) with Tourism Research Institute Ag. CEO David Gitonga and KTB CEO Dr Betty Radier during the release of the Tourism Performance Report (Jan – August 2022)

“The numbers are still not where we want them to be, but we are optimistic that we shall soon go back to our all-time high international visitor arrivals recorded in 2019, and even surpass it. This is because Covid-19 is contained and international travelers are now fully confident to travel.”

During this period, innovative products and marketing efforts were increased to ensure that the destination’s offerings remained competitive among both domestic and international visitors.

The destination continued to host international events that include the Magical Kenya Open and The Magical Kenya Ladies open which came back after a 2-year break.

The WRC – Safari Rally which commenced in 2021after a 19-year hiatus also returned in 2022. These events have played a major role in rebuilding the confidence of visitors to the destination of Kenya.

Out of the 924,812 international arrivals, 313,466 were on holiday, 274,722 visiting family or friends, 258,889 were for business and Meetings, Incentives, Exhibitions, and Conferences (MICE)- 43883 were on transit, 16,196 for education, with the rest coming in for other purposes including religion, and sports.

The top 5 international arrivals by country are the USA at 15%, Uganda at 9%, the United Kingdom9%, Tanzania at 8%, and India at 6%.

The report further shows that Jomo Kenyatta International Airport remains the major point of entry with 681,811, Moi International Airport recorded 40,355 arrivals with other airports showing a significant increase in arrivals.

During the event, CS Balala launched multi-lingual destination videos targeting both key and emerging markets.

The videos target the global traveler and put the destination top of mind among potential travelers and investors from various source markets across the world.

“As part of our strategy to continue engaging travelers from across the world, we are ensuring that we reach every market and the best way is to make sure we can communicate to them in their own languages. The videos we are launching today have been translated into various languages for better and wider reach amongst audiences in our key source markets. So far, we have translated to native languages targeting the following countries: China, France, Spain, Italy, Germany, and Arabic- speaking countries” Said CS Balala

The video which highlights Kenya’s diversity in tourism offerings and experiences will be amplified on Magical Kenya’s social media assets for wider reach and awareness of the destination.

They highlight cultures, cuisine, vibrant cities, adventure, and other experiences that punctuate the destination’s diversity

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