Home The News: Travelstart says Tanzania rapidly growing market for outbound as well as inbound tourism
Travelstart says Tanzania rapidly growing market for outbound as well as inbound tourism
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Friday, 22 October 2010 06:13

Times Reporter

South Africa is accustomed to thinking of other African countries as impoverished and lagging far behind us, despite the fact that our wine exports to some of them are growing and our supermarkets are finding them lucrative markets. So it comes as a surprise that South African online travel agency Travelstart has identified Tanzania as a rapidly growing market for outbound as well as inbound tourism. It has opened an office there this week to take advantage of expected growth this year.

Travelstart chief executive Stephan Ekberg explained yesterday that Tanzania was not only attracting growing numbers of foreign visitors, who spent $1.2 billion (R8.3bn) there last year, but is attracting more airlines, which fly only to destinations where they expect to do well.

He said it was not only foreign tourists and business travellers who his company expected to service, but Tanzanians, who were keen travellers, with Europe and the US among their favourite destinations.

His company was attracted by the fact that more than a million Tanzanians now had access to the internet.

It is not only Travelstart that has noticed how promising the Tanzanian market is these days. Dar-es-Salaam is serviced by a number of international airlines.

According to Ekberg, half the foreign visitors to Tanzania are business travellers, but a growing number are tourists.

Tanzania, in addition to several luxurious lodges visited by well-heeled guests from the US, UK and Europe, has natural attractions including Mount Kilimanjaro, the Ngorongoro Crater and the Serengeti, famous for the annual migration of huge herds of game in search of water.

South African conglomerate Tourvest has a tented camp in the Serengeti, attracting mainly foreign tourists, among other interests in the country.

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