Zimbabweâ€™s prime tourist resorts are reporting nearly 85% hotel bookings for the Christmas and New Year period, a welcome development to the industry which is expected to contribute 15% to the Gross Domestic Product this year.The hospitality industry says it has this year witnessed a remarkable increase in tourist bookings in most resorts towns that is averaging 85% as compared to last yearâ€™s 65%.
According to the Vice President of the Hospitality Association of Zimbabwe, Mr. Tamuka Macheka, most of the hotel bookings in most resort towns such as Nyanga, Kariba and Victoria Falls are by Zimbabweans with a sprinkle of tourists from the region and abroad a development he said is clear indication that tourism is on the rebound and that domestic tourism is beginning to grow.
â€œThere is a remarkable increase in bookings this year. In terms of domestic tourism we have seen a significant improvement in the number of local bookings, though I would also like to say the international market has also responded very well this year unlike other years,â€ said Mr Tamuka.
The tourism industry has for sometime been facing a number of challenges among them lack of international credit cards and lack of a reliable, consistent and credible national airline or flights into resort towns like Kariba, Masvingo, Nyanga and Matusadonha.
Analysts say, with clear signs of recovery, now is the time for the tourism industry to spruce up its products in preparation for the increase in both international and domestic tourists as well as the 2013 UNWTO General Assembly which is one of the biggest events on the national calendar.