Kenya to participate in the Asia pacific travel expo

Nairobi, October 15, 2019: Kenya will be seeking to increase her tourism numbers from the Asian market as it showcases her tourism products during the ITB-Asia – Singapore expo which will be taking place between the 16th and 18th of October 2019 in Singapore.

The forum is an annually held B2B trade event and convention for the travel industry designed to become the primary event for the Asia Pacific travel industry.

About 12 companies from the Kenya’s travel trade will be taking part in the expo by showcasing Kenya’s tourism offering and the Magical Kenya experience to the vast Asian pacific market which has not been fully taped into.

KTB chairman Jimi Kariuki said that Kenya had been receiving good tourism numbers from the Asian market but expressed hopes for higher numbers as marketing programs have been laid out to   woo the Asian market. “Our numbers from this market have shown good potential, in 2018, visitors from Asia to Kenya closed at 269,151 which translated to 13.3 per cent of the total visitors into our country from the Asian region. We project these numbers to rise by 2025, because an estimated 90 million households in Asia are expected to become part of the global travelling class. This clearly indicates that we must position ourselves better to ensure we reap bigger from these numbers” said Mr. Kariuki

Kenya’s tourism sector is upbeat on the growth of visitor number in the first quarter (July-September) pointing to a positive outlook at the close of 2019.

Within the period, international arrivals closed at 604,690, compared to same period last year which posted 587,385 arrivals. This is a growth of 2.9%”.

“ITB –Asia tourism fair presents Kenya yet another opportunity to tap into Asia market that continues to show potential for growth. We are riding on our current positive image the country is enjoying globally to re-affirm our position as the preferred tourist destination as well as Kenya’s commitment to improvement of tourism business”. Says the chairman.

Data from UNWTO indicates that Asia Pacific has been the fastest growing region in the world with regards to international tourist arrivals over the past 10 years   with most of this growth being attributed to China which has established itself as the leading global outbound source market.

According to the research undertaken by MasterCard on outbound travel from the Asia Pacific region, outbound travel is expected to grow by an annual rate of 6 percent over the forecast period of 2016-2021. Emerging Asia Pacific countries currently record about 1.5 times more outbound trips than the Developed Asia Pacific destinations, these countries are expected to grow more than twice as fast as that of the developed Asia Pacific destinations.

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Nairobi, Monday, December 7, 2020: TheKenya Tourism Board (KTB) is working on long term collaboration with athletes to position Kenya on top of mind among visitors and investors into the country.

KTB Chief Executive Officer Dr. Betty Radier said athletes have continued to positively profile the country with their sterling performances in international competitions.

“Even at these times of less travel globally as a result of covid-19 pandemic, Kenya continues to be top of mind among travellers and investors alike because of our athletes who excel in international competition,” said Radier.

The CEO was speaking at KTB offices as she flagged off Kenya’s 2020 London Marathon podium finishers for a five-day long familiarisation holiday to key attraction sites in the country.

Current marathon world record holder Brigid Kosgei who won 2020 London Marathon and her colleague Ruth Chepngetich who finished 3rd in the London marathon have been accorded a five-day tour of tourism attractions in Laikipia, Samburu and Lamu.

“As the body mandated with the task of marketing Kenya’s tourism products and experiences, we recognize the huge profile that our athletic stars occupy on the world stage. We believe that it is time to involve our athletes in making a pitch for the country as the best destination for investments and tourism.” Said Radier.

She added that despite the challenging year, the athletes managed to keep put up a strong performance in the London Marathon which has been the only major marathon event to take place this year.

“This year has been really difficult for everyone be it in sports or business due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Many local and international events had to be cancelled, which deprived them of the opportunity to do what they do best. Nonetheless, and thankfully the London Marathon took place, and we were well represented as usual. For that, we remain grateful for our sportsmen and women,” she added.

As part of its commitment to leveraging on marathoners, KTB this year signed up Marathon World champion Eliud Kipchoge as magical Kenya brand ambassador. KTB’s mission is to inspire the world to visit Kenya through effective strategic marketing of Kenya’s tourism products while enriching the lives of Kenyans and visitors alike. The annual London Marathon is part of the Marathon Majors that have over the years played a key role in profiling Kenya as the home of champions. Kenyan marathoners have dominated the competition over the past decade with Eliud Kipchoge winning the competition on four occasions including the 2018 and 2019 editions.

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“Having touched down in the Maasai Mara for the first time ever about two hours ago with my wife and three kids, it had seemed like the guide’s stories were as close as we would get to seeing a hunt, yet here it was unfolding right in front of our eyes.”

~ a thrilled Kipchoge


“Kenya is a land of diversity and one is spoilt for choice to savor the magical experiences spreading through the hinterland to the ocean, all wrapped with the warmth of the Kenyan people. I invite both local and international travelers to come and sample all these magical experience the destination has to offer”
~ world marathon champion Eliud Kipchoge.

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Entebbe to Mombasa Direct flight to improve arrivals in Kenya’s coastal region

Kenya is poised to reap big from Uganda travelers with a maiden Ugandan airline to Mombasa that was received at Moi International Airport Mombasa today with 76 passengers on board.

The inaugural flight which will be flying into Moi airport, Mombasa three times a week from Entebbe is expected to further increase visitation of Ugandan travelers into Kenya and especially the Kenyan coast.

Currently, Kenya relies on Kenya Airways and Jambo jet for visitors from Uganda through Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA) making it the seventh destination since it resumed operations in August 27 this year.

Speaking during the airline reception, Kenya Tourism Board (KTB) Corporate Communications Manager Wausi Walya disclosed that the flight was going to improve accessibility between the two neighboring countries by reducing time of travel for Ugandans who want to holiday or do business in Mombasa.

The market has been recording upward growth in the recent past and is ranked top source market from the region. The first half- year arrival figures (Jan-June) 2019, from the market was at 103,177 visitors up from 99,459 in the same period last year, translating to a 3.738% increase.

“This maiden flight will have a direct impact on numbers into the Kenyan coast and more so the beach and heritage enthusiasts. The recently unveiled Mama Ngina Water Front park, a cultural heritage center, packages for families and honeymooners in Diani and Lamu are among experiences available to the travelers,” said Wausi.

The Ugandan market has very low barriers to travel as compared to other Kenyan key source tourism markets. Lack of language barrier, short physical, psychological and cultural distances from Kenya as well as the use of Identity cards (IDs) and resident permits has made Kenya very accessible to the Uganda market.

KTB announced that beginning from the month of November, it will be working closely with the Kenya & Uganda trade partners; hotels, airlines, and different organization to roll out promotional campaigns to grow the market.

“We will also work collaboratively with partners in the region to drive inter-regional and intra-regional travel through the platforms provided by the East African Community and Northern Corridor Integration Projects” said Walya.

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Kenya Tourism Board Refreshes the Magical Kenya Destination Brand

NAIROBI, WEDNESDAY MAY 15, 2019: Over the years, destinations have not only become competitive but the desires of travelers have changed as they seek more value for money and a greater investment in enriching their memories through experiences. According to QRi 2018 research, the awareness of Kenya as a tourist destination among international travelers is at 62% and the Kenya Tourism Board is keen to enhance this through a transformational journey supported by an enhanced competitive marketing strategy.

KTB is looking at tapping more into the tourism diversity that Kenya offers through the establishing signature experiences, a process that has incorporated working with all the counties as part of improving the quality of existing tourism circuits and enhancing the quality of tourism products. Other areas of re-engineering business at KTB include leveraging more on digital marketing and communication and enhanced collaboration with customers through a defined customer relationship marketing structure. KTB is already reaping from some of the digital marketing efforts through recognition by Expedia group who awarded KTB the ‘Africa Campaign of the Year Award’ for the digital campaign “Can We Kenya Campaign ‘. This was an Influencer social media marketing campaign hosted in a microsite on Expedia Website. The award presentation was done at the International Tourism Bourse (ITB 2019) by the Expedia group. The Expedia group is one of the largest online travel global agencies that allows travelers to access varied information, make recommendations and conclude bookings for vacation packages. The largest numbers of travelers are now available on line hence most destinations have chosen to interface with the emerging traveler online.

‘We are collaborating more with the private sector to revamp the way we represent the destination, some of the programs will include training of tour operators and feedback sessions that are designed to create synergies that elevate the brand quality and value. Additionally, the establishment of signature products gives the destination an opportunity to share more of those experiences that stand out in projecting Kenya’s uniqueness’, added the KTB CEO, Dr. Betty Radier.

The Magic of Kenya lies in the many facets of her tourism offering. KTB CEO while asserting the varied tourism products that the country has says, “Kenya is beautiful, we are home to abundance of wildlife and pristine beaches, our culture is rich and adventure experiences on offers are exceptional, the landscape, sunsets and sceneries in the country are unpararelled and so much more. We invite local and international tourists to discover and immerse in the magic of Kenya‘.

With the refreshed Magical Kenya logo, there is an opportunity to enhance the visibility of the tourism brand across key international markets as well as domestically under the Tembea Kenya sub brand. Magical Kenya has over the years developed awareness amongst all government investment and marketing bodies across a variety of sectors including Agriculture (Tea and Coffee), Investments and Trade. The refreshed Magical Kenya logo takes into the account the warmth of the Kenyan people, the cultural values of the destination and the splendor of Kenya’s diversity of tourism offering ranging from wildlife, pristine beaches to other experiences including culture and adventure.

“The rebrand is informed by constant research and analysis of travel data which provides travelers’ behavior and needs and KTB will continue to tap into the insights to exceed visitor expectation”, says Radier. Dr. Radier pointed out that experiential packages, as well as sustainable tourism have become new trends in the tourism business. “The traveler taste over the years has changed; they want to enrich their travel diaries through memorable experiences with renewed interest in sustainable tourism and conservation.” said the CEO.

Currently, the United States is Kenya’s leading and best performing tourism source market with a market share of 12.2 percent of the total international arrivals to the country; other top markets include UK, Uganda India, China Germany and Uganda. KTB’s revitalized marketing efforts have seen the sector grow. In 2018, Kenya attracted over 2 million visitors into the country

About KTB
Kenya Tourism Board (KTB) is mandated to market Kenya as a preferred tourism destination locally, regionally and internationally.
Kenya, which is the third largest tourism economy in Sub-Saharan Africa is considered a choice destination. Last year, it was the first African country to host SKAL, a high-level global conference.

Earlier this year the country hosted the European Tour dubbed Magical Kenya Open which helped position Kenya as a golf destination. Last month, Kenya was awarded the World Travel and Tourism Council Global Champion Award at the WTTC Conference.
Currently, Kenya Airways has direct flight to the US which is a boost to the country, considering the US is Kenya’s leading tourism source market.

Tourism sector has been undergoing changes with new opportunities emerging from time to time. Airbnb is one such opportunity, which need to be embraced.

According to the Tourism Sector Performance Report, 2018 by the Ministry of Tourism, data on Airbnb shows that Kenya had more than 6,500 listings at the end of 2018.

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KTB unveils training on tourism products with counties

Dr. Betty Radier, giving her speech during opening of Top Experiences workshop attended by County governments

Kenya Tourism Board (KTB) together with the counties has unveiled a road map to identify and develop tourism products and experiences that the destination has to offer.

KTB today hosted over 37 county government representatives and private sector players to a one-day training session at a Nairobi Hotel to build their capacity for the exercise.

KTB Chief Executive Officer Dr. Betty Radier says the session will also address the existing weak link between the product and experience by identifying top experiences in each county.

“We have unique tourism products across the country, which need to be identified and developed as part of our strategy to offering diverse tourism experiences to our visitors,” She added.

The training is part of the new destination marketing strategy, KTB is in the process of implementing in line with the National Tourism 2030 blue print.

Radier called on the County governments to work closely with the private players in the sector in identifying unexplored experiences for KTB to package and market.


“This training will also achieve our objective of re-igniting the tourism products and experiences through support to destination marketing. It is an opportunity to create firm synergies to ensure that we have a strong and positive narrative of the destination,” added Radier

KTB for the better part of last year unveiled programs to create awareness across the country to sensitize Counties and private sector members on this new strategy, the role of each player and what it will take for the strategy to be realized.

Product validation

At the end of the training, according to KTB, the experience teams will be able to validate the identified potential top experiences and begin the process of auditing and developing them to become Kenya’s Top experiences.

Over 50 private sector players from counties have applied for the exercise. KTB will evaluate the top signature experience applications before undertaking site audits of the identified products and experiences

Kisumu County Executive Member in charge of lauded KTB for the initiative which she noted will open up the country for alternative tourism products.

Kisumu County Executive Member in charge of Tourism and Culture Achie Alai who is also the chair of the Tourism CEC’s National Caucus giving her opening remarks

She said respective counties had numerous tourism gem waiting to be explored and pointed out that counties will step up their partnership with the private players and communities who are the owners of the tourism products.

“We are aware of the role communities play in product identification and development and we are going to work closely with them to harness the potential of tourism in the counties,” she said

For more information contact;

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Kenya Banking on Filming as one of the initiatives to increase the number of Indian travelers

Kenya is banking on filming as one of the initiatives to increase the number of Indian travelers into Kenya that currently stands at over 125,000 tourists per year.

Kenya Tourism Board (KTB) says the increasing interest among the Indian film makers for shooting locations in the country will enhance top of mind awareness of the destination among the Asian community.

“We have identified this growing interest and this has reinforced our strategy to increase the volumes of visitors from India. With filming, we are certain of Kenya being a household name for the Bollyhood movie makers in India,” says KTB’s Director of Marketing Jacinta Nzioka at the beginning of Outbound Travel Mart (OTM) exhibitions, in Mumbai.  The exhibition will be a great avenue to meet and engage such enthusiasts and interested partners.

Kenyan travel trade is among over 1,000 exhibitors from about 50 countries across the globe exhibiting at the three-day long event held at Bombay exhibition center.

Nzioka disclosed that KTB in this financial year will have a Bollywood production shot in Kenya as one of the key deliverable.

Great movies, close to 80 of international films shot in the country in the past have helped to increase positive visibility of the country.  The India Film industry have previously revealed that new film destinations experience on average of 45% increase in arrivals when a top Bollywood film with renown actors is shot in destinations.

“We have some of the best filming locations in the world and the weather that can be easily predicted adds to our potential as a filming destination and that is why India is our market to go to,” says Nzioka.

Indian film industry better known as Bollywood is one of the largest in the world raking in billions of dollars on revenue with massive audiences.

Towards the end of month, KTB will be hosting Filmfare, one of the most famous Bollywood magazine for a shoot on diverse tourism products and experiences in the country presenting as part of campaigns to use film makers to showcase Kenya as a filming destination.

According to Nzioka other initiatives and investments to woo the Indian market include leveraging on cricket, adventure, safari experiences activated through consumer activation programs in partnership with the private players.

The Indian travel market has, in the last two years, experienced a slow-down occasioned by fiscal changes effected by the Indian government that negatively impacted on consumer spending.

Delhi, Mumbai or Ahmadabad are key source areas for visitors to Kenya with Kenya Airways, flights from Mumbai to Nairobi being a key contributor.

Kenya’s natural beauty and wildlife experience are key pullers that Kenya is leveraging to increase India’s traffic into the country.

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Kenya Tourism Board Leads the Tourism Industry to FITUR (Spain) and OTM (India)

Kenya Tourism Board (KTB) will be leading local travel trade on marketing missions in India and Spain as the country seeks to grow tourism numbers to 2.5 million visitors by 2022.

Over (10) Kenyan travel trade partners will pitch tent from January 23rd to 25th 2019 at the Bombay Exhibition Centre in Mumbai, India to woo travelers to Kenya at the Outbound Travel Mart (OTM).

OTM is a leading travel show in the Asia – Pacific region which acts as a gateway to India’s largest travel markets.

India is ranked among Kenya’s top five tourists source markets from the Asian continent and is considered among the fastest growing outbound tourism travel markets, accounting for 50million outbound tourists by 2020.

KTB Chief executive officer Dr. Betty Radier, says India remains a crucial outbound market through which Kenya can continue to grow its tourism arrival figures that closed at 125,032 last year, a 6.17% growth compared to the previous year.

Last year Kenya crossed the 2 million mark in international arrivals into the country with 2,025,206 tourists up from 1,474,671 reported in 2017, indicating a 37.33 % growth.

“India is an important market for Kenya and we have lined up other initiatives and investments that would boost brand awareness through sports such as Cricket, golf, as well as film making” says the CEO.

She disclosed that KTB will this week be hosting Filmfare, one of the most famous Bollywood magazine for a shoot on diverse tourism products and experiences in the country presenting an opportunity for film makers to showcase Kenya as a filming destination.

Radier said consumer activation programs, as well as travel trade sensitization are among activities planned to popularize Kenya in the Indian market.

According to the CEO, ease of aces to Kenya through the national carrier, Kenya Airways, that flies twice daily from Mumbai to Nairobi among other airlines has also contributed to the growth of numbers from the market.

At the same time, KTB will join thousands of exhibitors at IFEMA conference center in Madrid during for the International Tourism Trade Fair (FITUR), in Madrid, Spain from 23rd to 27th January 2019.

Spain has been recording a growth in numbers for the past years, with potential for further growth. Last year, the market posted 25,027 arrivals, translating to 1.24% growth recorded in the previous year.

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Good news for the sectors with growth in arrivals and revenue

The total tourism arrivals for the financial year 2017/18 grew by 6.8% to record 1,488,370 visitors compared to 1,393,568 in 2016/17, Tourism receipts for the period under review posted a 9.9% growth at Kshs 117.6 Billion, up from KShs107 Billion recorded in 2016/17.

Within the review period, combined arrivals for July to June Financial Year 2017/18 closed at 1,488,370 compared to 1,393,568 in 2016/17, illustrating a growth of 6.8%.
The Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA) recorded arrivals for the period of 848,521 up from 826,706 illustrating a growth of 2.6%.

Moi International Airport Mombasa (MIAM) recorded 119,910 arrivals up from 92,526 in Financial Year 2016/17 illustrating a growth of 29.6%

Cruise ship arrivals recorded in the period was 2,778 compared to 1,743 in Financial Year 2016/17, this is a growth of 59%.

The cross border arrivals closed at 517,159 up from 470,542 in Financial Year 2016/17, illustrating a growth of 9.9%.

Our domestic segment recorded a growth of 1.1% as indicated in the domestic bed nights’ figure that closed at 3.67 million bed nights compared to 3.64 million in 2016/17.
Tourism receipts for the period under review posted a 9.9% growth at Kshs 117.6 Billion, up from KShs107 Billion recorded in 2016/17

Purpose of travel

Holiday leisure remains the major reason for travel into Kenya during the period accounting for 73.6% of the total arrivals. In absolute numbers, holiday arrivals increased by 15.2% to record 714,617 visitors compared to 620,401 in 2016/17.

Business and Conference contributed 12.1% of the total arrivals in the period. This segment however recorded a 17% decline with 117,971 arrivals compared to the same period in financial year 2016/17 that posted 142,211 visitors.

We are optimistic that this sector will recover considering a number of impending number of events to be hosted in the country in the next financial year. These include the SKAL World Congress to be held in Mombasa on October (17th – 21st), Blue Economy Summit which will be held in November (26th – 28th) and is expected to attract between 5000- 6000 delegate.

Visiting Friends and Relatives (VFR) contributed 7.7% of the arrivals in the period, and other purposes- sport, study, medical, transiting, volunteerism contributed 6.6% of the total arrivals.

Market Performance
US Market was the best performing with 110,510 arrivals contributing 11.4% of the total. This is a growth of 1.6% as compared to 108,780 arrivals in 2016/17.

UK was the second market with 102,535 arrivals accounting for 10.6% of the total market share, this however was a reduction of 1.7% as compared to 104,276 arrivals in 2016/17.

Uganda was the 3rd top source market with 82,331 arrivals, an equivalent of 8.5% market share. This was an impressive growth of 62.1% as compared to 50,789 in the 2016/17 financial period.

India was the fourth market with 54,812 arrivals which translates to 5.6%, this is a decline in growth by 10% as compared to 60,872 arrivals in 2016/17.

Germany closed the top five source markets with 52,144 arrivals which is 5.4% market share of the total arrivals in 2017/18, this is a growth of 16.2% as compared to 44,874 arrivals in 2016/17 financial period

The performance of the top 20 source markets is summarized in the table below;

Source Market July – June 17/18 July – June 16/17 2017/18 % Share 2017/18 vs 2016/17 % Change
US 110,510 108,780 11.4% 1.6
UK 102,535 104,276 10.6% -1.7
Uganda 82,331 50,789 8.5% 62.1
India 54,812 60,872 5.6% -10.0
Germany 52,144 44,874 5.4% 16.2
China 50,671 52,274 5.2% -3.1
Italy 49,733 38,637 5.1% 28.7
South Africa 36,037 39,964 3.7% -9.8
France 26,802 21,256 2.8% 26.1
Tanzania 21,597 21,470 2.2% 0.6
Canada 20,988 20,901 2.2% 0.4
Netherlands 18,847 17,744 1.9% 6.2
Ethiopia 18,557 16,554 1.9% 12.1
Australia 17,729 17,420 1.8% 1.8
Spain 14,926 11,925 1.5% 25.2
Nigeria 14,669 17,450 1.5% -15.9
UAE 13,769 11,470 1.4% 20.0
Poland 12,961 10,125 1.3% 28.0
Rwanda 12,416 12,271 1.3% 1.2
Sweden 11,756 11,523 1.2% 2.0


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Kenya Tourism Board partners with adventure cycling organiser, Ngong Hills Individual Time Trial

KTB Tembea Kenya Mt. Bike Challenge

Kenya Tourism Board (KTB) has partnered with an adventure cycling events organiser, Ngong Hills Individual Time Trial (NHITT) to promote domestic travel by undertaking three mountain bike races countrywide beginning this weekend.
The first bike race dubbed “Arabuko Sokoke Forest Challenge with Tembea Kenya” is set for this weekend in Kilifi county. It has attracted the participation of hundreds of local and international cyclists.

The 64 kilometres bike race will take place in the largest and most intact coastal forest in East Africa. Arabuko Sokoke forest has 20% of Kenya’s bird species, 30% of butterfly species and at least 24 rare and endemic bird, mammal and butterfly species. The race is also part of the campaigns geared towards conservation.

KTB Chief Executive Officer, Dr. Betty Radier has said that the sporting event provides a new and exciting experience especially for young and middle-aged populations who are increasingly seeking out an active lifestyle, both for leisure as well as for fitness and networking.

“Kenya is a perfect destination for biking safaris due to the favourable weather throughout the year. The outlying touristic attractions along the competition routes attract the audience which follows the riders.” says the CEO.

Dr. Radier has further said that adventure tourism is fast growing with millennials developing more interest for authentic experiences through travel.
“Our aim is to showcase the attractions in the selected regions and push the adventure segment of travel that is increasingly attracting interest among the millennials”, she added.

Other biking challenges have been lined up for the months of June and July in Machakos and the Great Rift Valley.
The partnership comes a week after KTB concluded a month-long series of training workshops across the country targeted at domestic travel agents across the country. The training sessions sought to equip them with first-hand experiences of what Kenya has to offer to the domestic segment.
According to the KTB CEO, KTB will continue to explore partnerships and collaboration with industry players in order to reap maximum benefit from the domestic segment.
The CEO further noted that the domestic tourism segment has continued to cushion the sector during low seasons and that its performance is on the increase.
In 2017, domestic tourism recorded a total of 4.05 million bed nights being taken up by Kenyans compared to 3.5 million in 2016, a 15.9% growth.

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