Removal of travel restrictions by UK excites tourism sector

Tuesday, September 21st, 2021 00:00 |
Kenya Tourism Board (KTB) Chief executive Betty Radier.

Bernard Sigei and Charles Lwanga

PANDEMIC: The tourism sector has pledged to continue upscaling measures that ensure that the destination remains safe for visitors following the move by UK government to remove Kenya from its Red List that restricted travel of citizens of both countries.

Kenya Tourism Board (KTB) Chief executive Betty Radier while lauding the move   said progressive initiatives aimed at ensuring the destination remains safe for travellers will be enhanced.

“This is why in n 2020, the government through the Ministry of Tourism and Wildlife unveiled the Magical Kenya Tourism and Hospitality protocols which were reviewed in August of 2021 with the aim of ensuring that the industry continues to operate safely, and that visitors and citizens are protected against the Covid-19 pandemic” she said. 

The UK government announced the removal of Kenya from its Red List effective 4am on September 22, 2021.

This means that Kenyans are now allowed to travel into the country and UK citizens can easily travel to Kenya.

In Kilifi,  key sector players are now hopeful that the tourist destination will attract more tourists ahead of the December holiday’s season.

The region has been adversely affected by low tourism numbers attributed by the UK listing as well as covid-19 wrath. 

Monthly cleanups

According to Association of Women in Tourism, Coast region chair Kate Mwikali, they have been doing monthly cleanups to keep the resort town of Malindi and beaches clean in preparation for international tourists arrivals.

“We are very happy that the UK has removed Kenya from the red list countries because that restores confidence in the travellers,” she said.

Judith Mwamidi, director of Kilimandogo Resort in Malindi said the removal of Kenya from the UK’s red list will attract tourists to her 50-room resort, uplift the economy and create jobs to locals, adding that since the Covid outbreak, tourism went down.

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