A new report has outlined some of the key issues hampering growth in Kenya’s tourism sector. The Hospitality Report Kenya 2018 has noted that despite the challenges, Nairobi stands as the most popular destination with 35%, followed by Mombasa and Diani at 30% and 15% respectively. On flight destinations in the country, Nairobi to Mombasa is the most frequented route, while Tanzania is the top outbound destination from Kenya.
Environmental challenges such as the prolonged floods and drought periods
Floods have ravaged sections of the country since the beginning of the year and caused major damages including damage roads. This has posed a challenge when it comes to traveling, a situation crippling tourism industry.
Possible political tensions during electioneering periods.
According to Rosemary Mugambi, Regional Sales and Marketing Director, Serena Hotels EA, Kenya’s tourism industry has undergone challenges such as the uncertainty surrounding the political landscape in 2017.
“In the same year, the industry contributed 1.1 million jobs, and its resilient performance can be taken as a sign of maturity that tourism numbers, especially international arrivals were not adversely affected by heightened political tensions.” She said.
“It can be noted however that the government has definitely made some significant strides to enhance the industry and we applaud these efforts,” She added.
High cost of operations for hotels.
Cost of setting up hotels as well as maintaining them, all year round has proved to be a big challenge in the country. Some hotels though, it is their location that eats away at their projected profits. Bad roads lead to inflated transport costs, therefore making the country’s products compete unfairly with similar products in the East African region.
Some parts of Kenya such as the North are still red zones for international travellers, escalated by the negative publicity from international media.