Nairobi – A section of tourism and hospitality stakeholders have expressed optimism that the occupancy rate at coastal hotels is likely to reach 95% during this Christmas holiday season, a huge improvement on the same period from last year.
Players noted that the high numbers will be driven by the domestic market which is supported by school closures.
PrideInn Group of Hotels chief executive Hasnain Noorani said he believes hotel occupancy in the coastal region will increase by up to 100% over the Christmas and New Year’s Eve weekend. .
Noorani added that the current political stability along with the easing of Covid-19 measures has had a positive effect on the tourism industry and has attracted tourists from the mainland to experience the Christmas atmosphere on the coast.
“The tourism and hospitality sector that had just found its footing after nearly two years of devastation caused by the COVID-19 pandemic is being shaken again as countries erect new barriers to travel in an effort to contain the Omicron variant,” Noorani said.
Nevertheless, industry players are concerned that due to the emergence of the Omicron variant, tourism and hospitality businesses will be affected early next year.
“The tourism and hospitality industries were the most affected sectors during the first and second waves of Covid-19. Recently, following a drop in the number of cases and a high number of vaccinations, these sectors were experiencing the green shoots of recovery, however, the Omicron scare has once again sown fear in the hospitality industry, with many tourists considering canceling their advance reservations and hotel room reservations.” he added.