SUMMARY – TOURISM IN ZIMBABWE REBOUNDS AS AIRLINE EXPAND, SERVICES, BOOSTING FOREIGN ARRIVALS. INCREASED FLIGHTS, OCCUPANCY RATES, AND FESTIVE SEASON TRAVEL DRIVE ECONOMIC RECOVERY THROUGH TOURISM.
Tourism operators in Zimbabwe foresee a promising fourth quarter, expecting a surge in foreign tourists due to expanded airline services.
FlySafair and Cemair’s upcoming flights to Harare and Victoria Falls from Johannesburg, set for October, signify growing air travel opportunities. Other airlines, like Air Zimbabwe, Fastjet, Airlink, and Ethiopian Airlines, already operate on these routes.
Boosting Tourism via Enhanced Air Connectivity
Representatives from Zimbabwe Tourism Authority (ZTA) and Tourism Business Council of Zimbabwe (TBCZ) express enthusiasm for improved air links. Such links can facilitate tourist influx from key source markets and strengthen Zimbabwe’s connectivity.
TBCZ reported 55% hotel occupancy in the previous year’s final quarter, with resort centers at 98% and urban hotels at 27%. Expectations of even higher occupancy in Q4 2023 due to foreign arrivals, according to TBCZ Chairperson Paul Matamisa.
The upcoming festive season is projected to attract visitors, boosting domestic and international travel across Zimbabwe’s leisure destinations.
Crucial Role of Tourism in Zimbabwe’s Economy
Tourism plays a pivotal role in driving economic growth and development in Zimbabwe. Beyond being a source of leisure and recreation, the tourism sector has emerged as a significant contributor to job creation and revenue generation. The influx of tourists not only supports the hospitality industry but also fuels demand for various goods and services, from transportation to local crafts.
Zimbabwe’s government recognizes the immense potential of tourism as a catalyst for economic recovery. With the ambitious goal of surpassing 5.5 million tourist arrivals, the country aims to showcase its diverse landscapes, rich cultural heritage, and unique wildlife to global travelers. This strategic approach aligns with the National Tourism Recovery and Growth Strategy—Vision 2025, which seeks to leverage tourism as a driving force to propel Zimbabwe’s economy forward.