Faster adoption of an open sky policy has the potential to increase tourist arrivals in Kenya’s coastlines by threefold, PrideInn Group of Hotels Managing Director Mr. Hasnain Noorani has said.
Speaking on Monday, January 8th, 2018, he added that expediting the process will boost international tourism traffic to Kenya’s famous Moi International Airport and subsequently drive up booking numbers for hotels to sustain a tourism boom experienced in the last quarter of 2017.
The move aims at attracting more international tourists from Europe and other destinations across the globe.
“Reducing air access limitations related to air travel will be imperative in attracting more global visitors. To accelerate sustainability of tourism development at the Coast, the government ought to open up skies in Mombasa so that airlines from across the world can operate flights to Moi International Airport,” said Mr. Noorani.
The move will boost tourism and also sell Mombasa – one of Kenya’s leading travel destinations – internationally as a Meeting Incentive Conference and Exhibition (MICE) destination.
As a preferred tourist destination, Kenya’s coast is on the rebound following a prolonged political season and a long period slump linked with terror threats and travel advisories.
“We need this to be adopted sooner rather than later as it will compliment Mombasa’s attractiveness especially when it comes to the ease of doing business. Liberalization of air transport contributes to greater trade and tourism, inward investment, productivity growth, increased employment and economic” Noorani said.
A study by global management consulting firm InterVISTAS on costs and benefits of open skies in 2017, estimated that liberalization between the five EAC countries could result in an additional 46,320 jobs and $202.1 million (Ksh20.86 billion) per annum in gross domestic product.
International air services are being progressively liberalized throughout the world. The study has affirmed that an open sky policy is the ultimate form of liberalization which permits airlines to operate in countries without any restrictions.
Pride Inn is a leading Kenya-based hospitality chain with operations in Nairobi and Mombasa, two of the East African country’s leading tourist destinations.