Do you know which are the two most popular cities in Africa for travellers? Have you heard that both Hilton and Carlson Rezidor have launched ambitious African expansion strategies?
From new hotel openings to airport upgrades and travel trends, we’ve rounded up some of the most exciting Africa Tourism News this week…
Hilton launches Africa growth initiative
Global hospitality company, Hilton, has committed a total of $50 million over the next five years towards the Hilton Africa Growth Initiative to support the continued expansion of its Sub-Saharan African portfolio.
These funds are intended to support the conversion of around 100 hotels (roughly 20,000 rooms) in multiple African markets into Hilton branded properties, namely into its flagship Hilton Hotels & Resorts brand, the DoubleTree by Hilton and the recently launched Curio Collection by Hilton.
Patrick Fitzgibbon, Senior Vice President, Development, Europe, Middle East and Africa, Hilton said: “Hilton remains committed to growth in Africa having been present on the continent for more than 50 years. The model of converting existing hotels into Hilton branded properties has proved highly successful in a variety of markets and we expect to see great opportunities to convert hotels to Hilton brands through this initiative.”
Gondar and Axum airport facilities upgraded
Ethiopian Airlines has announced the upgrade of airport facilities at Gondar and Axum airports to accommodate night flights from this month.
Flights will depart every week night, departing Addis Ababa at 16h45, arriving at Axum at 18h05. From Axum flights will depart 18h35, arriving at Gondar at 19h15. Flights will depart Gondar at 19h45, arriving in Addis Ababa at 20h50.
Kenya to implement visitor safety programme during re-elections
From 25 to 28 October, the Kenya Tourism Federation (KTF), will again conduct its Election Period Operating Procedure (EPOP) safety programme to ensure the safety of visitors to the country during the re-election period.
EPOP consists of a safety programme to ensure the safeguarding of visitors in a pre, during and post elections capacity, ensuring that visitors to the country are safe and well informed.
Kotoka International Airport to offer free WiFi soon
The Ghana Airport Company Limited (GACL) has initiated the process to provide complimentary Wi-Fi access at all terminals of the Kotoka International Airport (KIA).
Currently, the company provides limited free Wi-Fi access of up to 30 minutes at the business and first class lounges, but this new move is to open it to all travelers using the airport.
Carlson Rezidor Hotel Group accelerates its growth across Africa
Carlson Rezidor Hotel Group has accelerated its growth in Africa with six hotel openings and the addition of three hotels to its portfolio this year. The hotel group aims to feature 125 hotels in its Africa portolio over the next five years.
In 2017, Carlson Rezidor has opened six hotels across the continent including Polokwane, Nairobi and Kigali’s first Park Inn by Radisson; Radisson Blu Hotel & Residence in Cape Town; its first entry into Chad with Radisson Blu Hotel N’Djamena and Africa’s first Radisson RED in Cape Town.
Jo’burg, CPT the two most popular cities in Africa
Johannesburg and Cape Town have emerged as the most popular destination cities in Africa in 2016, according to the latest Global Destination Cities Index
The rankings show that Johannesburg welcomed 4.57 million international overnight visitors in 2016, a 24% increase on the previous year’s 3.69 million visitors. Cape Town moved up from third place in 2015 to become the second most popular African destination city in 2016 with 1.52 million visitors.
Lagos, Nigeria with 1.04 million visitors, Casablanca, Morocco with 961,694 visitors, and Cairo, Egypt with 820,959 visitors rounded out the top five African cities, while Durban remained in sixth place, attracting 758,057 international overnight visitors.
Johannesburg also topped the rankings in Africa in terms of international visitor expenditure, with travellers spending US$2.56 billion in 2016. Shopping accounted for the largest percentage of visitor spend, followed by accommodation and dining.
Cape Town and Durban are ranked number two and eighth in terms of expenditure in Africa, with international visitors spending US$1.2 billion and US$314 million respectively.