On the heels of Ghana’s “Year of Return” success in 2019, with 1.1 million visitors and a $3.3 billion impact, Kenya and South Africa have launched similar programs to boost tourism recovery. Both countries are focused on attracting North American visitors as the rebound from COVID-19 restrictions continues.

Real Deal Kenya

The Kenya Tourism Board (KTB) launched the first phase of its campaign “Real Deal Kenya.”

Programming aims to spotlight the best of the country’s wildlife, culture, and adventure activities. The campaign includes a digital push in North America, launched by media-buying agency Dalh-Mac Group in partnership with Sojern, and a partnership with Kenya Airways. The Kenya Airways partnership offers flight booking options and partner travel itineraries suited for different interests and budgets. Travel partners include Africa Answers, African Travel, Audley Travel, G Adventures, Goway, Intrepid, and Kensington Tours.

“Kenya Airways is proud to partner with Kenya Tourism Board,” said Julius Thairu, Kenya Airways Chief Commercial and Customer Officer. “As part of this campaign, we have offered customers the benefit of discounted fares on the nonstop flight between New York and Nairobi.”

“This is not only a very timely and relevant initiative, but also an important part of our strategy for attracting visitation from abroad, as we regain our stability from the impact of COVID-19 pandemic,” said KTB CEO Dr. Betty Radier.

A 32-second video recently shared on Magical Kenya’s YouTube channel highlights the beauty of the country’s landscape, people, and culture.

Check it out below:

Credit: Magical Kenya

U.S. Neverending Tourists

Meanwhile, Cape Town and the Western Cape aim to capitalize on the lucrative U.S. market through its “U.S. Neverending Tourists” campaign. Three Americans immersed in the country’s nature, culture, and food and wine experiences are the campaign’s focus. Each spotlight is intended to share authentic perspectives of US expats who came to the Cape and never left.

Wesgro, the official tourism promotion agency for the region, will amplify its reach through a media partnership with Expedia.

In a statement about the series, Wesgro CEO Wrenelle Stander said, “U.S. travelers are known for their high spend, multi-generational travel, often seeking the bucket list trip. The US is also one of the largest markets for the Cape in terms of cruise passengers. With our industry preparing for the upcoming bumper season, I believe the Western Cape will deliver on this ‘trip of a lifetime’ brand promise.”

The Neverending Tourist digital campaign series launched its third promotional video, shared below.

Credit: Discover Cape Town and Western Cape

Unlike Ghana’s “Year of Return” initiative, which specifically targeted members of the African diaspora, Kenya and South Africa’s campaigns appear to be a broader stroke to appeal to the general market. 

For more information on Kenya’s “Real Deal Kenya,” visit realdealkenya.com.

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