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Jack Ma's visit excites Chinese travellers seeking to come to Kenya for holiday

By Philip Mwakio | Published Mon, July 31st 2017 at 07:46, Updated July 31st 2017 at 07:59 GMT +3

Ali Baba Group Founder, Jack Ma (middle) joins United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) Secretary-General Mukhisa Kituyi for a trip to Maasai Mara.

ALSO READ: Where are the Kenyan Jack Mas?

 

  • KTB launches online mobile training for travel agents in major Chinese cities
  • Travel agents term billionaire's tour a major boost for their campaign to woo Chinese travellers
  • KTB plans to produce a destination video specifically for the Chinese

Barely a week after the visit by billionaire Jack Ma, Chinese travel agencies have reported increased enquiries on Kenya's tourism products, the State tourism marketer has said.

His visit coincided with the launch of mobile online training for travel agents in China that was rolled out by Kenya Tourism Board (KTB) to create awareness and spur interest for travel among the Chinese.

Travel agents have termed the visit by the Chinese billionaire a major boost and endorsement for their campaign to woo Chinese travellers to Kenya.

"As a result of his visit, I can assure you that our work of marketing Kenya has been made easier. Interest to travel to Kenya has suddenly gone up and this is positive feedback," said Travel Service Bigeyes International co-founder Vivien Zhang.

Johnson Chen, general manager of a firm that is among the top 10 wholesalers of Africa and Middle East tourism products, disclosed that his company has received several enquiries about Kenya, which has been in the limelight following Mr Jack's visit.

"We anticipate to register an increase of travellers to Kenya in the month of September through October," said Mr Chen.

The tour operators were speaking at the weekend during promotional marketing campaigns by KTB in China's cities of Beijing, Shangai and Guangzhou.

ALSO READ: Heed Jack Ma advice on use of Internet to create job opportunities

KTB launched online mobile training for travel agents selling Kenya's products to enhance their knowledge on tourism packages the country is offering.

In addition, KTB plans to produce a destination video specifically for the Chinese market to sustain top-of-mind destination awareness among the Chinese.

KTB Chief Executive Officer Betty Radier, in a statement, said China is now listed among the top 10 tourist source markets for the country and has potential for further growth.

She added KTB would invest more resources in strategic marketing initiatives aimed at attracting high-end consumer segments.

Last year, the market posted 47,860 arrivals from China, up from 29,790 recorded in 2015.

Family travels as a result of Government's incentive of visa waiver for children under the age of 16 are among the factors contributing to the growth of the market.

Eric Zhu, the general manager for Joy Way, an international travel company, said Kenya would host more family travellers from next year through a kid's safari package that the company has developed.

ALSO READ: Jack Ma tells Chinese firms in Kenya to play by local rules

"In partnership with Kenya Airways, we are packaging this product around wildlife and the train services that cater for large groups and corporate clients," he said.


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