Zimbabwe On Its Way To Recovery
Zimbabwe is now becoming a viable and popular holiday destination to visit. That’s no surprise, with a wealth of natural treasures, including the Victoria Falls, luxurious and affordable safari and hotel accommodation. Zimbabwe has much to offer - hospitable people, culture, history, wildlife, monuments, art and sport. With the introduction in 2009 of the American dollar as the base currency and a process of reconciliation currently underway, over the past three years a relative calm has returned to Zimbabwe’s economy.
According to the World Travel & Tourism Council, Zimbabwe’s tourism economy is set to grow at 9.2% this year, making it the third fastest growing tourism economy in the world. And with political goodwill in place to foster a more stable future for the country, more visitors are predicted to make their way to Zimbabwe. A number of industry players in Victoria Falls are showing their confidence in the tourism industry by undertaking projects to cope with the international upswing. The Victoria Falls Airport is being modernised and enlarged and the runway is being lengthened to 4km to cope with bigger aircraft in anticipation of greatly increased numbers. Emirates has commenced its five-times-a-week schedule from Dubai to Harare via Lusaka, to open up the Middle East to Zimbabwe for the first time. The World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO) has enthusiastically endorsed Victoria Falls for its global summit in 2013, expected to draw 3,000 delegates and spouses from 158 countries across an 8-day programme between August 23 and September 02, 2013.
The African Travel Association (ATA), Atta's strategic partner in USA, has followed suit and will stage its conference for up to 600 delegates at Victoria Falls from 18 to 22 May this year. South African Airways (SAA) has dramatically increased its capacity to Zimbabwe by 66% by introducing a daily A330-200 flight (222-seats) from Johannesburg to Harare and more seats to Victoria Falls. Air Namibia are reported to be launching a four-times-a-week schedule from Windhoek to Harare in April. Zimbabwe is opening its doors to the world again and we welcome its re-emergence. It’s still a way off the heady days of 1995 but the New York Times recently rated Zimbabwe as one of three fast-emerging and worthy destinations. “Zimbabwe was once a thriving tourism magnet,” recalled the NYT, “but now the unity government, relative economic stability, brought about by the adoption of American dollars, is generating cautious optimism.”