US travel agents arrive to sample tourist attractions

Monday September 20 2021
Tourism pic

Tanzania Association of Tour Operators chief executive officer Sirili Akko (right) poses for a souvenir photo with the leaders of American Travel Agents at the Kilimanjaro International Airport (KIA) yesterday. PHOTO | COURTESY

By The Citizen Reporter

Arusha. The first group of international travel agents has arrived to explore and experience the Northern Tourism Circuit as part of tour operator’s grand plan to reboot the multi-billion dollar tourism industry post-the-Covid-19 pandemic.

Tanzania Association of Tour Operators (Tato) has, with UNDP support, been working round the clock, on behalf of its 300-plus members, to bring dozens of the travel agents in its painstaking efforts to market destination in the aftermath of Covid-19 pandemic

Hobbled by a brutal wave of Coronavirus, tourism is a money-spinning industry in Tanzania as it creates 1.3 million decent jobs, generates $2.6 billion annually, equivalent to 18 as well as 30 percent of the country’s GDP and export receipts respectively.

“I’ve never been in Africa, this is the first time and I hope I will explore and experience the beauty of Tanzania so that I can market the destination back in America,” said the American Travel Agent, Ms Paula Shroeder upon their arrival at Kilimanjaro International Airport (KIA) on Sunday.

Ms Shroeder explained that a substantial number of prospective American tourists do not know about Tanzania, forget about its key attractions.

“My presence here will help to raise awareness about the Tanzania to woo them to come to sample the attraction in the near future,” she noted.

Advertisement

Yet another Travel Agent, Mr Scott Miller, said he has been yearning to come to Africa for many years to see a big five and people.

“Through my visit, I am sure a lot of tourists will come to Tanzania to experience the wilderness safaris” Mr. Miller told the media.

For Bonnie Miller, her interest was to explore landscape, culture and wildlife, particularly the big five.

The travel agents will visit Manyara, Ngorongoro Conservation Area and Serengeti National park to get a glimpse of Tanzania’s endowed natural attractions.

“We are rolling out a welcome mat for dozens of Global Travel Agents, as part of a new strategy to market our destination in the aftermath of Covid-19 pandemic” said Tato’s CEO, Mr. Sirili Akko. “Our plan to bring a total of 300 international travel agents for the next 12-month, equivalent to 25 agents per month to explore and experience how Tanzania is endowed with unrivaled natural beauty” Mr. Akko noted. Under UNDP support, Tato has been investing heavily in terms of time, skills, and funds to position Tanzania as a safe and luxury destination in its high-spirited plot to woo high-end travelers in the country through targeted marketing strategies in several key markets.

Allied Market Research findings show that global luxury tourism market will reach $1.2 trillion in 2021-2027 period with a compound annual growth ratio of 11.1 percent.