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Diani Street Lights 2 optomizedKwale County Government is finally lighting up Diani Beach in an ambitious project to improve security and promote a 24 hour economy as part of Kwale’s County Integrated Development plan which mirrors the national strategy, Vision 2030.

The new 350 street lights (when completed) spanning from Indian Ocean beach club all the way to Mwisho wa Lami.

This covers slightly more than 13km.

The new solar off-grid Integrated street lights are the next generation of solar street light systems. All of the components including the solar panel, Lithium Ion batteries, charge controller, light sensor are housed inside a single Aluminium body.

Harry Kisamwa – (Director Oranje Safaris) : “ Very positive. We hope they all work and they are properly maintained. “

Harry Kisamwa – (Director Oranje Safaris) : “ Very positive. We hope they all work and they are properly maintained. “

The Integrated design not only makes the fixture aesthetically pleasing but it makes installation and maintenance extremely easy.

The County Government of Kwale has actually no immediate plans to expand the project in this financial year. However through the County Ministry of Tourism, the County Government is in discussion with all hotels to reciprocate efforts to light up Diani by having streets on their side of the streets.

This project will not only enhance security and tourism but also open up Diani Beach to further investment.

Visitors and residents will now feel safer to walk up and down Diani beach road with various businesses, which now perhaps are willing to stay open much later than before.

Vikram Korla – (MD of Neptune Group) says : “ A very good idea going forward on opening up Diani “

Vikram Korla – (MD of Neptune Group) says : “ A very good idea going forward on opening up Diani “

The project was funded by the County Infrastructure and Public works department to a tune of Ksh.66 million in the 2013/14 budget. There was a delay in the process due to import problems of samples before approval by the County Engineer.

Lighting up Diani Beach had been a project in the works since the early 1980’s, where the national government always made promises of undertaking the same. The County Government kept promise and showed with the right mind set and budget, projects that were otherwise ignored by the national government could now become a reality.

Dr. Philip Varghese – (Adminstration Committee Chair Rotary Diani) : “ Good news for Diani. Hopefully the County Government will maintain them and Vandals will keep off.”

Diani Beach Street Lights 2015

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If you take a little bit of time and drive around on our south coast you will see and feel : Our South Coast Tourism is dead !!

Many hotels are closed, restaurants empty, curio shops without clients and ( most significant ) you always get a parking place at Nakumatt Diani. Meanwhile thousands of hotel workers have lost their jobs and heading into a hopeless future together with their families and relatives.

Tourism Death 3
It´s not only the rain season – by far not. The tourist bookings for the time as of July are shocking low and no sign of hope anywhere. It’s not a joke – we have to face it – our Kwale County has lost its most important source of employment. All efforts of our Governor and his team to compensate this downfall with agriculture projects and/or new industrialization will not compensate the many thousand jobs lost.

The question is : What to do now ?

There is an old worldly wisdom saying: “ When you have struggled, accept it as a signal that your plans are wrong, rebuild those plans, and set sail once more toward your coveted goal.” That should be our direction. Accepting that our Kwale Tourism strategy and set-up is wrong. Accepting that our Kwale Tourism Goals are wrong. Accepting that our Kwale Tourism people in charge are wrong.

We have to push our Governor Salim Mvurya to act now !!!! Please clean the table – Fire your current team in charge – Start fresh !!!

But how ?

To answer this question we have to look first to our Kwale County Tourists . Who are they ? From which Country are they coming ? Which age ? What are they Looking for ? Believe it or not it is very easy. The official statistic figures are showing a clear picture. It’s clear that:

1) Over 80% of our Tourists are coming from Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Italy, Netherlands, France and UK.
2) Over 75% of our tourists are combining Beach Holidays with Safari experience
3) Over 65% of our tourists are between 25 and 55 in age ( the facebook generation )
4) Over 79% are staying 14 nights or longer

and most important

5) Over 60% of our tourists are Repeater – means they love our county, our hotels, our beach, our restaurant and our people !!!!!!

That’s our basis and it´s a great one. Thousands and Thousands of South Coast Loving Tourists are out there ready to come, enjoy their holiday and spend their money here in Kwale.

Only they are not coming these days – Why ?

The second fundamentals we have to listen to is “ Customer Satisfaction “ . What it means is that WE have to meet their expectations. WE have to make sure we preparing for them a super holiday. WE have to listen to them and need to understand what they want and what they don’t want. This is happening everywhere. Safaricom does it, Nakumatt does it, Toyota does it, BMW does it, Microsoft does it and Apple does it. Every professional customer oriented company does it.

Only our County Government is NOT doing it !!

Listening to customer needs has nothing to do with losing our cultural and Kenyan identity. We don´t need to become like Tourists. But if we want them to feel good and come to Kwale again and again – WE have to be ready to make sometimes adaptations.

Our County Tourism set-up is not “Customer Orientated” – they don’t understand what are the necessary home works we have to do to. They should put themselves in the shoes of our clients. In the shoes of our Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Italy, Netherlands, France and UK tourists. All plans and programs should be customer driven. Unfortunately they are not – or – they are not executed.

We have a clear vision on how to move forward which needs the will to change what we have and the courage to go what is needed. Here are our 4 most important ideas:

1) We need a new Tourism Minister who can flagship our Kwale Tourism Community
The position should be driven by a minister who understands foreign tourists needs and interests on one hands and the conference tourism on the other hand. We need a dynamic flag bearer who burns for Kwale and the tourism business. A men or a woman who feels a t home in the Kenyan culture AND in the European cultures.

2) We need a new empowered Tourism Steering Committee
This should be stuffed with hotel and resort manager from the coast who can provide Tourist needs. Also in there should be Tour-Operators to streamline our Safari offering. We need also environmental specialists, Kwale small business representatives, tourist police, workers Union and and and….. We have to bring the industry together !!!!

3) We need a Kwale Tourist Service Center in Diani Beach
This is where the Minister should have his office together with the tourist police – right in the center of our Tourists. A 24/7 office with gentle service employees who could inform and help our clients ( Tourists ). It could also be the Steering Committee meeting point.

4) We have to create a Kwale Tourism “ Good News “ Marketing Center
In our discussions with the European KTB ( Kenya Tourism Board ) Companies we have noticed that there is a big chance for good news to be published. For that we need a team of journalists who create content – good articles and good pictures. This team should be located locally – maybe also in the Kwale Tourist Service Center.

It’s time to wake up. At this moment where we are suffering most it is our chance to stand up and come back stronger than before. Let’s summon the death of our current South Coast Tourism for a moment – but then – let’s give birth to a new, young, dynamic, modern and fresh Tourism approach to show our clients from Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Italy, Netherlands, France and UK that we are still the best…..

….. otherwise we have to publish this !!!!

Tourism Death 1 optomized

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Adam SheikhIf you are living and/or working here in Kwale County in the Tourism business you are more than wondering about the efforts our Kwale Government is investing in supporting or stimulating one of the most important industries in our County.

Within the 2 years budgets so far, the tourism sector got in total a budget of over 200 Mio Schilling for investments – only where have all this funds been spent ?

Statement after Statement – Speech after Speech – Interview after Interview – the Governor and his Minister of Tourism Adam Sheikh were re-phrasing the same song and the same projects.

Among others here are their Flagship Projects for Tourism:

1) Beautification of the Beach
2) Creation, Protection and Promoting of at least 3 Kaja Forests within our County
3) Transition of the current harassing Beach Boy behavior into a win-win situation for all parties.
4) Creating a public awareness campaign called: “ Go South – Destination Kwale “ to stimulate tourism
5) Streetlights and Beautification of the Diani Beach Road
6) Develop Maji Moto to boost tourism
7) Develop sports tourism as fast-track to boost arrival numbers
8) Extension work on the airstrip’s runway from the current 800 meters to 2 kilometers

It´s shocking that nearly nothing has been achieved yet. Even more shocking if we want to believe Adam Sheikh´s own words that more than 31.500 people of Kwale County are depending on the Toursim business.

So the key question will be: Is our Kwale Government not able to support the Foreign Tourism Industry … or … are they not willing ? It looks like the answer should be more than a YES or NO. Analyzing the work the Government did in the past 2 years we could come to following answers:

1) Our Government has definitely put Foreign Tourism on low priority.

They are investing and concentrating much more on Agriculture, Education, Health and Food Security. Nothing wrong with that – hands up – but Tourism – they are not in favor of.

2) Our Government Tourism stakeholders have not found their role & responsibilities in the Foreign Tourism Industry Arena.
The role of County Tourism Ministry should be clearly to succeed in infrastructure homework’s. Organize the beach and the beach boys. Make sure the main beach road is in good conditions, well maintained with some streetlights. Make sure the main Tourist areas are clean without piles of garbage. Organize security within the tourist centers, hotels and shopping areas.

3) Our County Tourism Minister is not able to handle all the south coast Tourism Players.

It is essential for all government officials that they know what is going on in their arena. Who are the players, who are the foreign tourist, what are their interests, when are the booking and where, different nationalities have different behaviors and and and. For that you organize normally regular meetings – inviting all related business stakeholders …. from Kenyan Safari operators to big English hotel manager – from German resort director to Dutch restaurant chef.

Talking to many Coast Tourism players – we can confirm that most of them are still in love with this county and believe in the future of Kwale tourism. On the other hand nobody really understands why our County Government is hiding away and not fulfilling their project promises. The business community is willing to talk and to take responsibility – only – Dear Mr. Governor the ball is in your corner.

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The Diani Tourism and Business Connect Expo 2015 is a new exhibition that is planed to take place in Kaskazi Beach Hotel, Diani Beach, South Coast on 26-28 March 2015 starting from 8.30 am to 5 pm.

Toursim Expo 2015 3

The Objective of this Expo, organized by Diani Realtors Ltd, will be to offer exhibition opportunities to small, medium and large scale local companies and organization to show case their goods and services to a wider clientele expected to come from East Africa, Africa and the rest of the world.  The Diani Tourism and Business Connect Expo 2015, coming seven months after the first Destination Kwale Investment Forum, will provide the much needed continuous marketing and profiling of Kwale County.

The organizers want to have a direct impact on tourism for all stake holders. They have partnered with different hotels, companies and also counties.  Hotels which will exhibit include sofar the Kaskazi, Leopard and Leisure Lodge hotel.  Airlines who have commited to exibit are Jambo Jet and Ethiopian Airlines. Others supporters include KWS and Davis and Shirtliff.  Counties expected to exhibit include Kwale, Nakuru, Kilifi, Mombasa, Nandi, Laikipia and Nyandarua county.

Toursim Expo 2015 2

Diani Tourism and Business Connect Pre-Launch event that was held at The Leopard Beach Resort and Spa

As one of the event highlights the organizers are planing to bring all the 41 Miss Tourisms down for the event as well. The event will run from the 26th to the 28th of march at Kaskazi and will to be opened by our Governor Salim Mvurya.

For all who are interrested to join this Tradeshow and have a look for free – more Information or to register your participation please call 0724746343 or email dianibizconnect@gmail.com

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As you can see – the flights are ready for online booking as of now. Departure time in Ukund is daily at 15:00. The flight from Naironi to Ukunda leaves also daily at 13:35.

Jambo Jet Diani Beach optomized

The airline’s management has been considering making a move to use a smaller aircraft for some time now to more comprehensively serve Kenya’s domestic destinations.

Sources from the tourism industry were upbeat when it became known that Lamu, Malindi and Ukunda would be served from the 28th of March onwards, in time for the Easter holiday season. Said a regular Nairobi based source:

‘That will help us beat those damned travel advisories because passengers destined for Diani can now fly to Ukunda directly from Nairobi, after they have cleared customs and immigration. In fact, passengers from even the region can now book their flight to Ukunda without using a taxi from JKIA to Wilson Airport. I hope that the Jambojet flights will be linked to Kenya Airways flights from say Entebbe or Kigali so that expats can get to their resorts without using the Likoni ferry. Last week it was again utter chaos when some ferries did not report for work. It is a bottleneck for us Kenyans and not a good welcome or goodbye for tourists when they are stuck at the ferry for hours’.

Other coast based stakeholders were equally swift to welcome the new services and Lamu and Malindi, which have suffered from lack of enough accessibility by air in the past, will no doubt benefit.

At the same time has a source close to Kenya Airways also confirmed that the Q400 will also be deployed on the routes from Nairobi to Eldoret and Kisumu, where frequent complaints about flight delays in the past raised the attention of the Kenyan national assembly two weeks ago.

Willem Hondius, Jambojet’s CEO, went on record earlier today when he said: ‘We have chartered this aircraft to complement our current fleet of three Boeing 737 planes which are serving the existing routes. However, the Q400 will also be utilized on Kisumu and Eldoret in order to improve services on these two routes. Lamu and Malindi are leading tourism destinations, globally acclaimed for their pristine beaches and unique cultural sites. Ukunda, also known as Diani, has an airstrip serving Kenya’s busy south coast tourism circuit. By flying to these destinations, Jambojet will be hoping to tap the anticipated increase in traffic especially to Lamu where the government plans to construct a $5 billion port’.

Please use the Share Buttom to let your friends know about this new route to South Coast !!!!

 

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Germanys Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier´s journey to the African continent concluded with a visit to Kenya. He was welcomed to Nairobi by Foreign Minister Amina Mohamed and subsequently met President Uhuru Kenyatta.

Key topics during his visit were the state of regional cooperation in East Africa and development of bilateral relations. Steinmeier and Mohamed also met with German and Kenyan business representatives to discuss and promote trade and tourism relationships between the two countries.

German Foreign Minister with Kenian counterpart and German Ambassador Peschke (left) and Kenyan State Secretay Kibicho (right).

German Foreign Minister with Kenian counterpart and German Ambassador Peschke (left) and Kenyan State Secretay Kibicho (right)

 Steinmeier furthermore met with representatives of the political opposition for a stronger understanding of the internal situation in Kenya. The German Foreign Minister finally presented the concept for the Berliner Humboldt-Forum, which, among other things, is meant to promote cultural exchange with Africa.

Following Steinmeier´s visit to Rwanda, Kenya was the last stop on the Foreign Minister´s visit to Africa. He was met at Nairobi Airport by fellow Foreign Minister Amina Mohamed. Both already knew each other as Mohamed had visited Berlin a year ago to discuss the state of bilateral relations with the Steinmeier. Back then, Steinmeier named Kenya as a prime example for an Africa continent that was quickly outpacing old European perspectives.

 Promoting regional cooperation
Steinmeier met President Uhuru Kenyatta for political talks. At the centre of the consultations was how to strength regional cooperation. Subsequently, Steinmeier took the opportunity to introduce Kenyatta to the high-level economic delegation accompanying him during his visit to Africa.

Steinmeier together with Kenya´s president Kenyatta.

Steinmeier together with Kenya´s president Kenyatta

In the course of his stay Steinmeier also met with representatives of the opposition for talks concerning the internal situation of Kenya, among them former vice-president Kalonzo Musyoka.

The nation´s role in promoting cooperation in the region also featured prominently in the Foreign Minister´s talks with Minister Mohamed. Steinmeier described Kenya as an anchor of stability during a joint press conference. He added that the country counted among those states which were driving forward regional cooperation in East Africa – a process Germany is happy to support.

 Support for Somalia
The Foreign Minister also paid respect to Kenya for sheltering 500,000 refugees from Somalia while simultaneously supporting political development in the neighbouring country. He also highlighted the role Germany was playing in training Somalian security personal. He added that Germany was looking forward to advising the country concerning the future development of its political system, as well as sharing Germany´s experiences with decentralisation to support this process in Somalia.

Steinmeier and Mohamed in dialogue with German and Kenyan business representatives.

Steinmeier and Mohamed in dialogue with German and Kenyan business representatives

Dynamic economic relationships
Steinmeier also stressed that the already strong cooperation ties between Germany and Kenya should be developed further. To this end, he was accompanied by a high-level delegation of economic and cultural representatives.

Economic relationships were established early on during the visit. Steinmeier and fellow Foreign Minister Mohamed talked at length with German and Kenyan business representatives. A range of German enterprises is based in Kenya and both countries showed a huge interest in developing economic relationships further.

Steinmeier explained the idea of the Humboldt-Forum in Nairobi.

Steinmeier explained the idea of the Humboldt-Forum in Nairobi

 Cultural Exchange
Another key topic on Steinmeier´s agenda was cultural exchange. He and fellow Minister Mohamed visited the national museum in Nairobi, where they were greeted by Culture secretary Hassan Wario, Education Secretary Jacob Kaimenyi and curator Ahmed Yassin. Steinmeier and the head of German Foreign Ministry´s cultural division, Andreas Görgen, presented the concept for the Humboldt-Forum, to be established next year in Berlin´s City Palace. Comprising of a museum, a library and housing parts of Berlin´s Humboldt-University as well as a convention centre, the Forum will serve as a meeting place for people of all cultures and ages.

Steinmeier described the Humbold-Forum as a market place for ideas, an Agora, which is going to promote discourse between science, nations and cultures. “I am sure that the Humboldt-Forum will act as a large and inviting place for ideas from all around the world. Only the open dialogue among societies, among our citizen, scientists, young musicians, architects and authors will enable us to nurture lasting trust and understanding across all borders.”

German Foreign Minister Steinmeier in an interview:

What brings you to Kenya?

As a regional power in Africa with a thriving economy, Kenya is important to us. It has one of the 10 strongest economies on the continent and achieved middle income country status in 2014.

We are following the implementation of the Constitution with great interest. We support devolution as our experience with the decentralisation of power and responsibility in Germany has been positive. We regard ourselves as a close partner of Kenya in development and modernisation, not only politically but also economically, culturally and in the sphere of academic exchange.

I have, therefore, not come alone but with a delegation comprising many prominent representatives of major German companies, and the cultural and academic community. We want to strengthen our trade and economic integration. We are also seeking more cooperation in the academic and cultural spheres. And we want people in our countries to have more contact with each other.

What is your assessment of Germany’s diplomatic relations with Kenya? What can be done to improve the ties?

Germany was the first country to officially recognise Kenya after independence. We have enjoyed close bilateral relations based on mutual trust for decades. Today, we are working closely together to master the global challenges we face.

Kenya plays an active and constructive role when it comes to regional and international security, the fight against terrorism and drugs, and environmental and climate protection. I appreciate that, just as I do the momentum President Uhuru Kenyatta has generated with regard to further integration in the East African Community (EAC). Support for regional cooperation is a cornerstone of Germany’s policy on Africa. New fields of collaboration are opening up here.

How much is Germany’s investment in Kenya and in which areas? Are there any plans to increase it?

Bilateral trade was at its highest level to date — 415 million euros — in 2012, while German investment in Kenya stands at around 100 million euros. Some 100 German companies are operating in Kenya and that number is set to rise. Kenya is already an attractive market.

The oil and gas deposits found in the north, the improved infrastructure, and modern telecommunications provide new opportunities for cooperation. That is why I am accompanied by officials from major German companies. The German Government has of late been providing export credit guarantees — Hermes guarantees — for goods and services of German companies to Kenya’s public sector.

The first East African-German Business Summit, intended to enhance economic ties with Kenya and the entire EAC, took place under the chairmanship of Deputy President William Ruto and the former Federal President, Dr Horst Köhler, in 2014.

In terms of trade, how much has Germany opened its market to Kenya exports? Are there any moves to give Kenya special consideration in terms of exports since it imports more than it sells?

EAC member states have free access to the European Union’s single market. As a leading member of the EAC, Kenya, thus, has access to the market in Germany, a member of the EU. Tea, coffee and flowers from Kenya have a good reputation in Germany. Many of the red roses lovers in Germany gave each other on Valentine’s Day last week came from Kenya.

I am pleased that the Economic Partnership Agreement between the EU and the EAC was finally signed in October 2014 after many years of negotiations. That is a great success. Economic partnership agreements foster regional integration and sustainable development.

Kenya has embraced devolution, a system of governance that is well established in Germany? How has Germany supported devolution in Kenya?

Germany supports the implementation of the Kenyan Constitution, particularly the devolution anchored in it. During the last 60 years, our experience of devolution, which we call federalism, has been very good. Devolution is a great opportunity to take administration and development closer to the people.

We are assisting Kenya on the basis of our own experience. We are helping to establish structures in counties, and train State and county officials. The situation in which Kenya finds itself as it establishes a devolved state is a huge task.

Germany has, on one or more occasions, made clear its position on issues of governance and democracy in Kenya. What is your comment on the current government?

The Constitution has given Kenya a blueprint to establish one of the most modern democracies in the world. In 2010, the majority of the population voted in favour of this groundbreaking reform of their State.

Its implementation is a herculean task. We have great respect for all the institutions involved — government, Parliament, counties and civil society. In light of the terrorist threat, the balance between security and freedom has to be found in Kenya, too. We believe that security and freedom belong together.

Resolute action against terrorists, development and greater social responsibility belong together. The stronger and more creative civil society is, the stronger, more creative and stable a country is.

Kenya, through the African Union, is pushing for the establishment of an African court to try crimes of war and crimes against humanity instead of the International Criminal Court? What is Germany’s position on this matter?

We believe the plan by African states to establish such a court is a good idea. African problems should be resolved first and foremost by Africans themselves. We in Europe also have special regional tribunals. We consider such efforts to be complementary to strong international penal justice, as is guaranteed by the International Criminal Court in The Hague, which also has our full support.

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It´s not so long ago that our Diani Beach was rated one of the most beautiful beaches around the world. For sure a step forward to promote our Kwale County as international tourism destination.

But our current County Government has shown in the last more than 2 years that they are not really interested in pushing our south coast tourism business – at least we can not identify any milestone project to be finalist.

These days we can recognize that the garbage situation – especially on the Diani Beach Road is getting more worse every day. Very big areas left and right of this road are dirty and becoming waste dumping hotspots.

There is no network of official waste collection areas that would be cleared by the government. So we see them growing wild everywhere – including the usual waste burning fires, which are highly dangerous for the environment and the personal health.

Waste in Ukunda2Of cores we all remember the new anti-waste-dumping-law … don´t laugh – its existing !!!

But maybe our Kwale Tourism Minister Adam Sheikh has something new in mind. He is talking ( only talking ) about strengthen the local tourism attractions. Well – here we are.

What about a daily excursion around Diani Beach and Ukunda and we call them The Garbage Tour.

It would be a tour you don’t need to organize – just drive and see. You don’t need rangers or conservancy areas.

What a brilliant idea !!!!

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A few weeks ago, East African Affairs, Commerce and Tourism Cabinet Secretary Phyllis Kandie has formed a Consultative Tourism Recovery Strategy Committee to examine the challenges facing Kenya’s tourism industry. One of the major issues to be addressed by the nine-member committee is insecurity which she said has in the recent past posed a threat to the industry.

We here on Southcoast put some hope in this committee that they would come up with a national campain that would also have a big protion of marketing projects for the Kenya Southcoast Toursim Industry, which main target grpoug since decades are Germans, Austrians, Italians plus some Dutch and a rising numbers of Polish and Czech Tourists.

Sofar nothing has happend !!!

The new Global marketing camgaign which has an ambrella “ Why I Love Kenya “ has started a few days ago but this will bring nearly no tourists to the Southcoast.

You ask WHY ?

The new campaign is started as an viral, digital campaign using the sozial networks – motivating all Kenya Lovers to send in their reasons and pictures why they love Kenya. It sounds good – but for southcoast it isn´t. This campaign was created under the preshure of the several travel warnings, of which the Britsh one hurts Kenya the most. Obviously the Tourism Recovery Strategy Committee wants to make preshure on the Britisch ( and other ) Governments to change their mind.

So they started this campaign which is sofar happening at about 95% on Twitter – using the Hashtag #WhyIloveKenya. Only our Southcoast Tourists doesn´t use Twitter heavily – in Germany its still a niche. Lets have a look on twitter use for various countries:

Twitter in countries

 

On top of that ourism Cabinet Secretary Phyllis Kandie hired a UK firm, National Review, who has been contracted by the KTB to carry out the online reputation campaign at a cost of Kshs 10 million ($118,000). The online campaign aims to push positive news ( in english only ) on search engines to the first page and hold them there for at least six months.

But according to Johann Jensen, the chief executive officer of African and Mideast hotel booking website Sleepout.com, online reputation alone cannot be enough to bring back the tourists. “In tourism, it’s hard to think of online and offline reputations as separate. With the amount of information available to travellers online today, a country’s online reputation is or at least will soon become their offline reputation. Doing tourism well means building trust with visitors. Countries must really match or exceed their visitors‘ expectations,” Jensen said.  He added that successful public relations activities need to be done in the targeted markets on the ground.

So – Last week – there was a big series of meetings all over the country, mostly lead by Kenyan Toursim Board, to discuss the possibilities of recovery. Sofar we could not get any information about the concret plans for the Kenyan Southcoast Clients. Even the PR agency responsible for Germany, Austria and Switzerland could not confirm their furture strategies.

Tourism Executive Member Kwale County - Adam SheikhUnfortunatly – our Kawale County Tourism Executive Member, Adam Sheikh, did not lift HIS secrets about his planed campaign “Go  South Destination Kwale” that should be implemented to the tune of Sh87million out of which Sh52million will be used for promotional and tourism management activities with Sh30million dedicated to Television and Radio publicity and advertisements. Needless to say: It hasn´t started yet !!!!!

 

Last but not least Kandie also disclosed this week that the National Treasury had not disbursed money for marketing Kenya as a tourist destination as was directed by the President. President Uhuru Kenyatta announced that about Sh200 million would be used to promote the country as a tourism destination.

“I do not know exactly how much we shall receive. We shall know when we get it,” Said Kandie.

 

 

For refernce: The Tourism Recovery Strategy Committee members are:

Chairperson Kenya Tourism Federation, Lucy Karume
Background: General Manager Indian Ocean Beach Club, Chief Executive Officer Kentucky Association of Highway Contractors Inc,
General Manager Beach Club Jacaranda Hotels Ltd

Kenya Association of Hotel Keepers and Caterers Chairman, Jaideep S. Vohra
Managing Director of one of the biggest hotel and lodge group in Kenya. ”Sarova Hotels and Lodges”

Chairman of Kenya Association of Tour Operators, Adam Jillo
Managing Director of Nature Expeditions Africa Ltd.

Kenya Tourism Board Managing Director, Muriithi Ndegwa
CEO of the Kenya Tourism Board (KTB)

Chris Modigell who will represent South Coast Stakeholders
Director of Absolute Kenya Ltd as Project Manager and Management Consultant at Leopard Beach Resort & Spa

Roberto Marini representing Malindi Stakeholders
Managing director of Ocean Beach Resort and Spa

Philemon Mwavala to represent Watamu Stakeholders
Managing Director Southern Sky Safaris

Donald Kipkorir
Lawyer and Partner at Kipkorir , Titoo & Kiara

Cecil Miller
Managing Partner of Miller & Company Advocates

 

The Kenya Tourism Board (KTB) has launched a plan to restore the country’s image online following a series of terror attacks and animal poaching incidents.

The board announced it plans using over KSh 200 million ($2.3 million) to kickstart a campaign to counter a mass exodus of tourists from Kenya, after governments from countries such as the UK have warned citizens about travelling to the country.

The warnings have come amid a series of gun and grenade attacks in Nairobi and Mombasa. The attacks have been blamed on Somali militant group al Shabaab, which is fighting to get Kenyan troops to withdraw from an African peacekeeping unit in Somalia.

UK firm, National Review, has already been contracted by the KTB to carry out the online reputation campaign at a cost of Kshs 10 million ($118,000).

The online campaign aims to push positive news on search engines to the first page and hold them there for at least six months.

– See more at: http://www.itwebafrica.com/ict-and-governance/256-kenya/232969-amid-terror-attacks-kenya-attempts-repairing-image-online#sthash.S7AY6ZwY.dpuf

The Kenya Tourism Board (KTB) has launched a plan to restore the country’s image online following a series of terror attacks and animal poaching incidents.

The board announced it plans using over KSh 200 million ($2.3 million) to kickstart a campaign to counter a mass exodus of tourists from Kenya, after governments from countries such as the UK have warned citizens about travelling to the country.

The warnings have come amid a series of gun and grenade attacks in Nairobi and Mombasa. The attacks have been blamed on Somali militant group al Shabaab, which is fighting to get Kenyan troops to withdraw from an African peacekeeping unit in Somalia.

UK firm, National Review, has already been contracted by the KTB to carry out the online reputation campaign at a cost of Kshs 10 million ($118,000).

The online campaign aims to push positive news on search engines to the first page and hold them there for at least six months.

 

But according to Johann Jensen, the chief executive officer of African and Mideast hotel booking website Sleepout.com, online reputation alone cannot be enough to bring back the tourists.

“In tourism, it’s hard to think of online and offline reputations as separate. With the amount of information available to travellers online today, a country’s online reputation is or at least will soon become their offline reputation. Doing tourism well means building trust with visitors. Countries must really match or exceed their visitors‘ expectations,” Jensen told ITWeb Africa.

He added that successful public relations activities need to be done in the targeted markets on the ground.

He also said that having diverse online campaigns such as social apps, use of social media and games competitions could help activate the millions of Kenyans showcase their country’s beauty.

“These online solutions could reach out to the millions of tourists planning their trips already and have a realistic chance of changing their minds and generating much needed content to counter the barrage of bad press,” he said.

“SleepOut, for example, is currently working with KTB and the World Bank to support the accommodation sector in building the most complete database of the country’s hotels, resorts, lodges and guest houses yet there is much more that needs to be done.”

During the last month, the country has seen a sharp decline in tourist numbers from traditional source markets including the United State, United Kingdom and Australia due to travel advisory resulting from runaway insecurity.

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– See more at: http://www.itwebafrica.com/ict-and-governance/256-kenya/232969-amid-terror-attacks-kenya-attempts-repairing-image-online#sthash.S7AY6ZwY.dpuf

The Kenya Tourism Board (KTB) has launched a plan to restore the country’s image online following a series of terror attacks and animal poaching incidents.

The board announced it plans using over KSh 200 million ($2.3 million) to kickstart a campaign to counter a mass exodus of tourists from Kenya, after governments from countries such as the UK have warned citizens about travelling to the country.

The warnings have come amid a series of gun and grenade attacks in Nairobi and Mombasa. The attacks have been blamed on Somali militant group al Shabaab, which is fighting to get Kenyan troops to withdraw from an African peacekeeping unit in Somalia.

UK firm, National Review, has already been contracted by the KTB to carry out the online reputation campaign at a cost of Kshs 10 million ($118,000).

The online campaign aims to push positive news on search engines to the first page and hold them there for at least six months.

But according to Johann Jensen, the chief executive officer of African and Mideast hotel booking website Sleepout.com, online reputation alone cannot be enough to bring back the tourists.

“In tourism, it’s hard to think of online and offline reputations as separate. With the amount of information available to travellers online today, a country’s online reputation is or at least will soon become their offline reputation. Doing tourism well means building trust with visitors. Countries must really match or exceed their visitors‘ expectations,” Jensen told ITWeb Africa.

He added that successful public relations activities need to be done in the targeted markets on the ground.

He also said that having diverse online campaigns such as social apps, use of social media and games competitions could help activate the millions of Kenyans showcase their country’s beauty.

“These online solutions could reach out to the millions of tourists planning their trips already and have a realistic chance of changing their minds and generating much needed content to counter the barrage of bad press,” he said.

“SleepOut, for example, is currently working with KTB and the World Bank to support the accommodation sector in building the most complete database of the country’s hotels, resorts, lodges and guest houses yet there is much more that needs to be done.”

During the last month, the country has seen a sharp decline in tourist numbers from traditional source markets including the United State, United Kingdom and Australia due to travel advisory resulting from runaway insecurity.

 1 0 7

– See more at: http://www.itwebafrica.com/ict-and-governance/256-kenya/232969-amid-terror-attacks-kenya-attempts-repairing-image-online#sthash.S7AY6ZwY.dpuf

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HOTELIERS have praised the decision by the National Environment Management Authority to revise the cost of acquiring waste management licences.

The Environmental Management and Co-ordination Act (EMCA) license introduced by the Environment ministry in 2006 was considered punitive by many hoteliers.

National Environment Management Authority Director-General Geoffrey Wahungu

National Environment Management Authority Director-General Geoffrey Wahungu

All hotels, irrespective of their sizes, were supposed to pay Sh105,000 to acquire licences.

The charges have been revised to between Sh25, 000 and Sh100,000 depending on size of hotel, the Kenya Association of Hotel Keepers and Caterers has said.

Speaking to the press in Mombasa, KAHC Coast executive officer Sam Ikwaye said small hotels are subjected to high operation costs.

„We raised this issue as small hotels used to pay the same amount as five star hotels for industrial waste management. This was totally unfair,“ he said.

The new rates are now categorized according to size of hotels, those with 1-25 beds will be paying Sh25, 000 annually, 25-50 bed occupancy will pay Sh30, 000 and 50-75 beds will pay Sh75, 000.

The association’s CEO Mike Macharia said revision of the licence fees will help small hotels survive harsh economic times.

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Kenya Tourism gets a shot in the arm as CONDOR anounces their 4th flight to Kenya as of July 2014

Information has been obtained that Condor, the German charter airline, is planning to up their current three weekly flights from Germany to Mombasa and on to Zanzibar to four, come July.

Condor AirlineWhile the added seats will not make up for the loss of the charters from the UK, which were halted in a panic reaction to a travel advisory issued by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, which going by common undertones from Kenya was aimed at nothing else but to inflict pain and damage on the Kenyan government and by prolongation the tourism industry, at least will it allow for greater numbers of German tourists to come and visit the Kenyan coast.

Although the flight moves on from Mombasa to Zanzibar, an East African island destination with growing appeal in Germany, has the announcement rekindled hope among the tourism and resort stakeholders at the coast and reaffirmed the strategy to continue working existing markets alongside new and emerging markets to showcase Kenya as a safe and desirable destination for tourist visitors.

Charter flights to Mombasa from Europe started to fizzle away from as early as February this year due to a lack of demand and with many tour operators no longer willing to guarantee the minimum number of seats needed to operate such charter flights without incurring losses, several airlines decided to cut down on flights to reduce their risk, leaving the Kenya coast for the first time in decades short of flight capacity to fill the resort beds.

Watch this space for more emerging news as and when information becomes available.