Ahead of the long weekend, on Monday 12th December Kenya will celebrate Uhuru Day, aka Independence Day, were figures released of the performance of the tourism sector for the months between January and October 2011, which showed a sharp increase in arrivals and an even greater increase in revenues expressed in Kenya Shillings. While the latter is aided by the weak performance of the Shilling, arrivals have in fact risen by over 16 percent for the first 10 months of the year, confirming the trend seen earlier in the year when comparing half year results.
2011 is set to replace all records achieved in 2010, hitherto the best year ever for Kenya tourism, in terms of arrivals and revenues generated, and this performance will bolden demands by the sector to allocate it more money for tourism marketing and promotional campaigns abroad, in particular in emerging and new markets, to reap even better in coming years. While nearly half of all visitors to Kenya came from Europe, other markets have become ever more important for Kenya, as more airlines keep flying to Nairobi to add an endless stream of new visitors day in and day out. Leading producer for Kenya remains Britain with a 15.8 percent market share, followed by the United States with 9.6 percent inspite of the often prohibitive wording of their State Departments anti travel advisories and Italy and Germany are third and fourth respectively with 7.5 and 5.5 percent market share respectively. Interesting enough though has India made its way into the top 5 producers, now commanding a 4.7 percent share of the arrivals to Kenya.
As Kenya goes into celebration mode this weekend, beach resorts and safari lodges reportedly fully booked by expatriates and Kenyans taking a break over the long weekend, these news will be warmly welcomed by the countrys tourism sector, which has put on a sterling performance and where all campaigns, including the TembeaKenya promotion for increased domestic travel by Magical Kenya are showing excellent results.