By Kennedy Kangethe
Nairobi — Officials of the Kenya Tourism Board (KTB) are visiting Kuwait City, Dubai, Abu Dhabi and Doha in a bid to woo tourists.
The campaign will take a week, according to a statement from KTB.
KTB says these cities and especially Kuwait City have shown all the indications of contributing to the Kenya’s tourism growth as the country turns to emerging markets and the Africa region for more tourists.
“Kuwait is potential to us and this is the beginning of our efforts to tapping into the market that is interested in luxury travel’ says KTB acting Regional Marketing Manager in charge of the Africa Market Fatma Bashir.
KTB is meeting about 200 travel agents in the cities to interest them to sell Kenya.
After the initial awareness of what Kenya has to offer, the tour operators invited for the forums will then get an opportunity to meet the accompanying travel trade companies for one-to-one business discussions.
KTB has also leveraged on the opportunity to engage select media in all these cities with a view of equipping them with information on Kenya’s tourism products so that they are able to report from a point of knowledge.
Speaking at the forum in Kuwait, Kenya’s Ambassador Mohammed Mahat thanked all the participants for giving Kenya a chance citing that Kuwait is one of the biggest consumers of tourism in the world.
“This is because they have the economic power and various destinations compete for their attention especially during their holiday months between June and September when the weather is harsh in their country,” he added.
He challenged KTB to persist in its presence in the market by dedicating time and resources in order to increase destination awareness and get a fair share of Kuwait’s potential.
“Kenya has an authentic product that is a thrill and experience of those who visit. We are the home of authentic safari and this was endorsed by being voted ‘Best Safari Destination 2013’ by at the World Travel Awards in December, 2013. We need to invest more in the market through further direct interaction with the consumers,” he added.
He further assured Kuwait residents of a smooth visa process into Kenya.
Last year Kuwait recorded less than 500 arrivals to Kenya, a figure KTB said will see rise with increased awareness.
“Besides beach and wildlife, this market is interested in honeymooning in Kenya, adventure including water sports like Snorkelling, quality accommodation, culture and all that is uniquely Kenyan,” he said.
Mahat assured participants that all efforts were in place to ensure that Kenya remains safe and urged the tour operators not to judge Kenya harshly by last year’s terrorism attack similar to others experienced all over the world.
‘We have continued to reassure the market of Kenya’s safety and her conducive business for tourism business and other economic activities,” says the ambassador.