Unguja — Zanzibar authorities expressed optimism over tourism recovery after the monthly number of visitors increased last month.
A total of 29,128 tourists entered the archipelago in November 2020 compared to 12,157 visitors in October this year, according to the Office of the Chief Statistician of Zanzibar.
However, the number of November visitors for 2020 is about 61 percent of 47,824 tourists arrived in November 2019.
The head of the tourism statistics unit at the office Mr Bakar Khamis announcing the November statistics yesterday expressing hopes of the sector recovery after Covid-19 which disrupted travels.
He said most of the visitors came from Europe which accounted for 83 percent of the 29,148 visitors.
“Russia had the highest number of visitors who accounted for 49.0 percent, followed by Poland with 56 percent,” he said.
He said 89.6 percent of the visitors were 15-64 years old, 7.4 percent were under the age of 15 and 3.0 percent were 65 years and above.
“This last group of seniors is a very good group because they are good spenders,” he said.
“Most of the foreigners who entered the country preferred to stay for at least ten days, a step that is good in accordance with the government target of retaining the foreigners for at least ten days,” he said.
According to Mr Khamis, 99.6 percent of the visitors came to the country for a vacation while 0.2 percent visited relatives and friends and 0.2 percent came for other reasons. The Director of marketing at Zanzibar Tourism Commission Miraji Ussi said the increase is due to good relations with other countries as well as efforts to promote Zanzibar tourism destination.
He said his office in collaboration with other institutions have been spending time promoting Zanzibar in attempts to restore confidence on visitors following the global outbreak of Covid-19 pandemic.
“I also urge other people to be part of promoting tourism in Zanzibar. This is a task for us all in as it’s for the national interest and welfare of our people” he said.
The head of the communications at the Zanzibar Immigration Department, Sharif Bakar Sharif said their department is well-organized in providing services to visitors arriving in Zanzibar.
He said they expect to increase the number of service booths for visitors using airports, as well as the port.
“We are doing this to keep pace with the growing number of tourists. We will continue improving the provision of services to ensure our country continues to get more visitors,” he said.