South Africa Tops List Of Tourist Arrivals In Zim

According to Finance Minister Tendai Biti in his 2011 budget statement, 89% of tourists’ arrival in Zimbabwe this year were from Africa while Europe registered 4% and the United States 2.8%.
Although President Robert Mugabe’s government took up the Look East policy, luring Oriental countries for business and discounted holiday packages, Asia only registered 1.8%.
“The leading source of tourist arrivals remained Africa, at 89.7%, with the highest arrivals from South Africa and Botswana,” said Biti.
Challenges faced by the tourism industry have mostly to do with backward technology.
“Slower adoption of ICT banking systems and international debit and credit card facilities by most of our tourist service providers has had a downward effect of tourist flows,” Biti said. A tour operator said there was room for rapid growth as long as the political situation improved.
“Foreigners get reports that there is instability here. Worse now that there is talk of elections next year.
“People fear that Zimbabwe is known for political violence and their countries might advise them not to travel to Zimbabwe,” said Rodger Matangure.
Zimbabwe Tourism Authority corporate communications manager Sugar Changonda said his association was embarking on a rebranding drive and hoped that tourism would grow next year.
“We are working on ways to increase the numbers of international arrivals next year. We have a number of packages lined up that will see more European visitors coming to Zimbabwe,” he said.
A hotelier said that the move to bring the Chinese to Zimbabwe on holiday had not really benefited the sector because they are budget beaters.
“The Chinese travel in groups and with a communist background they are stingy. They don’t spend much when on holiday.”
-Times Live