Traditional tourism markets are almost back to normal -Hospitality Association
Hospitality Association of Namibia Chief Executive Officer, Gitta Paetzold released the latest tourism accommodation statistics for the month of April 2022.
Paetzold said the statistics are those of the room and bed occupancy report and interesting observations were made from these statistics.
“April 2022 saw an overall national occupancy of over 36.5%, compared to 27% last year April and a mere 1.3% in April 2020, the month of full lockdown in Namibia,” she added.
She said what is most encouraging is the fact that the statistics show that tourism is gradually nearing the level of pre- COVID-19 times when in April Namibia showed an average room occupancy of just over 54%, which means that tourism seems to have advanced two-thirds towards normality.
Comparing the statistics for 2020 to 2019 Paetzold said in 2019 50% of all rooms occupied were from Europe, while in 2022 that level has nearly been reached, with 47% of the rooms occupied by guests from Europe.
“This is a positive sign indicating that Namibia’s traditional markets are back to almost normal levels and with active marketing, promotions and trade participation of Namibian tourism businesses at national, regional and international levels in recent months, the industry is confident that the current tourism recovery trend will continue, as there is a huge interest in and demand for Namibia from the global travel trade,” emphasised Paetzold.
She further stated that the return of international airlines, such as Qatar returning to Namibia at the end of June and the expression of interest for partnerships from the likes of KLM and Belgium Air with Namibia gives further reason to believe that the future looks promising.
“We are however aware of the ongoing challenges, including persistent travel restraints due to the ongoing COVID-19 threats and thus cautious of likely setbacks,” she added.
Paetzold also announced the return of the Hospitality Association of Namibia Tourism Trade Forum (HTTF), which was paused two years again due to COVID-19, which will take place from 2 to 3 June in Windhoek. “HTTF will provide a platform for tourism service providers and product owners to network and trade with local partners, including tour operators, consultants and travel agents, to develop tour packages and shape the Namibian travel product to meet and exceed international expectations,” concluded Paetzold.