Archive for the ‘Tourism’ Category

source: Sunday Standard
by Sunday Standard Reporter
07-11-2010

Tour operators this week angrily blamed the national air carrier for bad representation in the eyes of the travelers as their profits staggered in a year that was expected to have brought a windfall in the regional tourism industry.

“As noted before, perhaps the biggest single challenge the tourism industry faces within Botswana remains the often substandard service rendered by Air Botswana, the only scheduled air carrier allowed to service the tourist in the northern Botswana.

“This situation has been further exacerbated by the discontinuance of the direct Johannesburg/ Maun/ Johannesburg route, occasioned by our Civil Aviation Authority’s refusal to allow foreign-based airlines to compete with Air Botswana on this route thus necessitating an en-route diversion and stop in [continue reading]

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source: Sunday Standard
by Sunday Standard Reporter
07-11-2010

Wilderness Holdings predicted that tough market conditions will continue in the medium term with bed night demand battered as traditional markets in the U.S and Europe remain affected by the credit crunch.

Unfavourable exchange rates, rising costs and recession in source markets remain some of the challenges for company that operates across the SADC countries.

Andy Payne, Chief Executive Officer of the Botswana Stock Exchange (BSE) and JSE listed company, said down ward pressure on yield was managed well while the business real grew in bed night sales.

“We do not expect much change in some markets. Our source markets (US and Europe) are in a precarious economic situation,” Payne pointed out at the [continue reading]

source: Mmegi
BRIAN BENZA
Staff Writer

Tourism operators say the breakdown in talks over a Bilateral Air Service Agreement (BASA) between Botswana and South Africa will result in the country losing its tourism competitive advantage to other regions such as East Africa.

Following the collapse of negotiations between the two countries last July, South Africa forced Botswana to cease its Johannesburg-Maun direct flight from the beginning of October in retaliation for Botswana’s continued monopolisation of the route.

South African airlines have been trying to break into the lucrative route, but the Botswana Government has refused to open the coveted corridor in order to protect Air Botswana, the national carrier.

Other than Air Botswana, no other airline is currently permitted to have a scheduled flight from Johannesburg – which is the air access point of [continue reading]

source: Mmegi
Mpho Tlale
Correspondent

The Head of the European Delegation to Botswana, Paul Malin, said if southern African countries use tourism to their advantage, revenue generated could be invested in infrastructure.

“Hotels and lodges can be built, public transport can become more accessible and facilities necessary for tourism at higher levels of comfort can be established,” Malin told a workshop on Investment in Sustainable Tourism in Southern Africa in Gaborone recently.

He said some of the key challenges that face tourism in southern Africa are also relevant to Europe.

He cited structural changes driven by climate change such as rising sea levels, scarcity of water, pressure on biodiversity and risk to cultural heritage from mass tourism as well as an increasing global competition and the need for [continue reading]

source: Mmegi
STAFF WRITER

Tourism concern Wilderness Safaris has partnered with Great Plains Conservation in a P30-million deal that will transform one of Botswana’s famous tourism properties, Duba Plains in the Okavango, into a diversified premier tourism attraction.

In a statement released this week, Wilderness says the sale of Duba Camp, whose proceeds will be used to enable further development in the Okavango and Linyanti regions, was completed in May this year when it received a payment of US$4.5 million. Duba Plains is a 300 000-hectare reserve in the Northern Okavango popular among tourists because of its lion and buffalo interactions. Says the statement from Wilderness:

“Okavango Wilderness Safaris (OWS), a wholly owned subsidiary of Wilderness Holdings Limited, entered into an [continue reading]

source: Mmegi
MBONGENI MGUNI
Staff Writer

The amended Tourism Act will revoke licences of operators who fail to attain at least a one-star grading after one year of assessment, as Government and industry players tighten quality standards and sector competitiveness.

Recently gazetted amendments to the Tourism Act also make the grading of all tourism facilities and operations compulsory, as opposed to the previous regime in which grading was voluntary. Affected facilities include all hotels, lodges, guesthouses, safari operations and other travel and tourism products and services.

Under the revamped law, all operators are required to approach the Botswana Tourism Organisation to initiate assessment for grading of [continue reading]

source: Mmegi
Mbongeni Mguni
Staff Writer

The Botswana Tourism Organisation (BTO)’s heritage tourism activities are bearing fruit with several community-driven projects on the verge of taking off around the country.

The projects, funded under the BTO’s P15 million annual development budget, are designed to diversify tourism away from traditional activities such as wildlife while simultaneously spreading tourism activities around the country.

The heritage activities are in line with a World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC) research recommendation that [continue reading]

source: Mmegi
Mbongeni Mguni
Staff Writer

The P180.5 million upgrade and expansion of the Kasane Airport is expected to open avenues for tourism development because it will provide greater and more efficient access to the Chobe natural attractions.

Signing a $8 million (P54.4 million) Arab Bank for Economic Development in Africa (BADEA) loan towards the project last Thursday, Assistant Finance Minister, Charles Tibone said the upgrade and expansion of the airport would drive the promotion of other economic sectors, apart from air transport

“We are currently in the process of transforming our economy from one that is heavily dependent on minerals by increasing the growth of other sectors like transport, tourism and financial services.

“The upgrading and expansion of the Kasane Airport to handle greater volumes of [continue reading]

source: Mmegi
THATO KALA
Correspondent

The Okavango Delta, the world’s largest inland delta, has been shortlisted as a finalist in the Destination Stewardship category of this year’s Tourism for Tomorrow Awards.

The prestigious Awards, which recognise best practice in sustainable tourism in four different categories – Destination Stewardship, Conservation, Community Benefit and Global Tourism Business, will be held in Beijing, China next month.

The Okavango Delta has been picked alongside China’s Mount Huangshan Scenic Site and an unnamed destination in Montenegro.

Botswana Tourism Board (BTB) public relations officer, Thabiso Leshoai confirmed the development.

“Okavango Delta, situated in the northwest part of Botswana, has been shortlisted as a finalist in the Destination Stewardship category of [continue reading]

source: BOPA
18 March, 2010

GABORONE – Botswana’s tourism market recorded a marginal increase of tourists during recent global economic recession, Minister of Environment, Wildlife and Tourism, Mr Kitso Mokaila, told Parliament Tuesday.

Mr Mokaila said the recession impacted negatively on the Botswana tourism market in that while tourism numbers had increased, it was a much lesser percentage as compared to previous years. He said the trend of tourists visits to Botswana during the recession was such that there had been a 3.1 per cent annual increase in tourist arrivals in 2008 and 3.5 per cent for 2009 against an estimated 8.4 per cent annual increase over the previous years. He explained that from these totals, over 80 per cent of tourist arrivals were intra-regional as opposed to inter-regional, with South Africa and Zimbabwe taking the lead with 87per cent of such arrivals.

Mr Mokaila was repsonding to Chobe MP, Mr Gibson Nshimwe who asked him to state the trend of [continue reading]

source: The Botswana Gazette
Written by NCHIDZI SMARTS
Wednesday, 17 March 2010 00:00

In the latest update on the imminent listing of Wilderness Safaris, Imara Africa Securities has recommended a long-term buy for the tourism outfit’s stock. Imara is a medium sized investment banking and asset management group and has offices in Botswana, Malawi, South Africa, the United Kingdom (UK) and associate offices in Malawi and Zimbabwe.

Wilderness Safaris have put up a fully underwritten public offer for three million ordinary shares at a price of P4.00 in Botswana and R4.56 in South Africa. The regional tourism outfit has said the exercise is a strategically significant step in its evolution, designed to enable it to take full advantage of growth opportunities and to give the public an opportunity to participate in its future success.

In an equity research, Imara Africa Securities has said Wilderness presents an opportunity for investors to invest in various tourism African markets simultaneously, thereby lowering the risks associated with investing in one market. “Wilderness’ gross profit margin has [continue reading]

source: Mmegi
BRIAN BENZA
Staff Writer

International sportswear manufacturer, Puma, has snapped up a 20-percent stake worth P185 million in Botswana’s tourism concern Wilderness Holdings through a private placement.

Wilderness, which is currently in the process of listing on the Botswana Stock Exchange, has been in Botswana for the past 26 years and has operations in the Chobe, Linyanti and the Okavango Delta.

In an interview with Business Week, Wilderness CEO Andy Payne said Puma bought 46.4 million shares while Puma chairman and CEO Jochen Zeitz bought a one-percent stake worth P16.7 million in his individual capacity from the 56.3 million that were on [continue reading]

source: Mmegi
MARANYANE NGWANAAMOTHO

The Ministry of Environment Wildlife and Tourism has announced that it has not and will not ban self-drive tourists after there were allegations that the ministry had closed them out in the industry.

Principal public relations officer, Archibald Ngakayagae has called the allegations by tourists and local entrepreneurs false and uncalled for, but however indicated that the ministry had noticed that there are self-drive tourists, even foreign ones who illegally trade by playing tour guides in national parks and game reserves. He said that these illegal operators bring foreigners or their ‘clients’, while pretending to the officials at the gates to be with their families or companies.

Ngakayagae has complained that illegal operators act against the national parks and game reserve regulations and even degrade touring sides. “There are numerous self-drive tourists who disregard the National Parks Regulations by [continue reading]

source: Sunday Standard
by Prof Malema
28.02.2010 7:37:02 P

Wilderness Safaris, the regional tourism giant outfit is to seek a primary listing on the Botswana Stock Exchange (BSE) that is aimed at helping its growth phase across the southern African region.

The company’s independent public offering that involves 3 million shares being placed on BSE will also seek secondary listing on the Johannesburg Securities Exchange’s (JSE’s) Africa Board.

The company said Friday that the exercise was a strategically significant step in its evolution, designed to enable it to take full advantage of growth opportunities and to give the public an opportunity to participate in its future success.

The Chief Executive Officer, Andy Payne said the company’s strategic objective was to double the number of owned Wilderness bed nights by 2015, as well as to double the area under its influence by expanding into regions, which complement its [continue reading]

source: Mmegi
KEOBONYE MAJATSIE
Correspondent

BirdLife Botswana has said that it will launch a book entitled “A Guide to Starting a Community-Based Birding Tourism Business” (Avitourism Handbook).

Birdlife Botswana Chairman Harold Hester said The Avitourism Handbook is aimed at promoting Community-based Birding Tourism as an untapped opportunity in Botswana and so the handbook is necessary to guide and stimulate community groups to start utilising birds around their area for economic gains. “The Avitourism Handbook has been produced in both English and Setswana to enhance community’s better understanding and appreciation of birds,” he said. He said the handbook production was made possible by financial support from the Environment Support Programme (ESP).

“This a joint initiative between the [continue reading]