New look Vic­to­ria Falls Air­port to boost Zim tourism

Chronicle (Zimbabwe) - - Feature/national News -

ex­plorer, David Liv­ing­stone as “so beau­ti­ful that even an­gels on their flight to heaven should have stopped and gazed!”

Vic­to­ria Falls is now within touch­ing dis­tance to the world but how does Zim­babwe stand to re­alise the gains from this mil­lion dol­lar project?

In this day and age where the world has be­come one global vil­lage, air trans­porta­tion is fast prov­ing a vi­tal cog in the de­vel­op­ment of economies hence the “open skies pol­icy” mantra reach­ing fever pitch at ev­ery gov­ern­ment eco­nomic re­cov­ery strat­egy fora.

In his ad­dress dur­ing the of­fi­cial open­ing of the Vic­to­ria Falls Air­port, Pres­i­dent Mu­gabe was quick to point to the need by the Gov­ern­ment to quickly re­struc­ture the Civil Avi­a­tion Au­thor­ity of Zim­babwe (CAAZ) to sep­a­rate the reg­u­la­tory au­thor­ity from air­port man­age­ment func­tions in line with the in­ter­na­tional best prac­tices.

“Now that the Vic­to­ria Falls Air­port is com­plete, I urge the min­istry (of Trans­port and In­fras­truc­ture De­vel­op­ment) to move to achiev­ing our aim to mak­ing Zim­babwe the re­gional hub of South­ern Africa,” said Pres­i­dent Mu­gabe.

The Vic­to­ria Falls are by far one of the world’s most fa­mous tourist at­trac­tions. Be­fore the re­fur­bish­ment of the air­port, wide bod­ied planes were land­ing in Liv­ingston Zam­bia, yet the most at­trac­tive sites of the falls are in Zim­babwe. As they say, the Vic­to­ria Falls are like a woman, if you want the back side you go to Zam­bia and if you want the front side, you ob­vi­ously come to Zim­babwe.

In or­der to reap the full ben­e­fits from the Vic­to­ria Falls In­ter­na­tional Air­port, there is need to free the air space and Tourism and Hos­pi­tal­ity Min­is­ter, Dr Wal­ter Mzembi is on record calling for the open skies pol­icy.

There is also need to re­view prices across all sec­tors, set­ting at­trac­tive ac­com­mo­da­tion prices as well as those for other ac­tiv­i­ties so as to lure more tourists to the des­ti­na­tion.

“Be­sides the open skies pol­icy, there is also need for us to be com­pet­i­tive as a des­ti­na­tion. As it is some coun­tries are ben­e­fit­ing through of­fer­ing af­ford­able prices and en­cour­ag­ing tourists across to globe to come to their coun­tries where they would be of­fered pack­ages to fly to Vic­to­ria Falls and back with Zim­babwe get­ting a small chunk of the cake as tourists chose the cheaper way,” said Dr Mzembi.

Hos­pi­tal­ity As­so­ci­a­tion of Zim­babwe pres­i­dent, Mr Ge­orge Manyuma said the tourism sec­tor would be gath­er­ing for its an­nual con­fer­ence soon with the is­sue of prices one of the meet­ing’s agenda.

He says with the pre­vail­ing pric­ing regime, the coun­try was out bid­ding it­self de­spite it be­ing one of the best des­ti­na­tions in South­ern Africa.

“There has been a lot of talk about high prices in the tourism in­dus­try and in our an­nual con­fer­ence the pric­ing regime would be part of the agenda,” he saidZim­pa­pers syn­di­ca­tion ser­vices.

The new look Vic­to­ria Falls In­ter­na­tional Air­port

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Zimbabwe

© PressReader. All rights reserved.