This is a monthly series of articles to provide market intelligence on the tourism industry in Africa. The first article provided an overview of tourism in Africa with this article focusing on Namibia. The information included below was the latest available on 10 May 2019.
The Namibia Tourism Satellite Account found that in 2015 tourism’s direct impact represents around 3.5% of Namibia’s GDP, while the broader economic impact represents around 10% of Namibia’s GDP. The direct impact of tourism on employment represents 6.5% (or 45 000 jobs) of total employment, while the broader economic impact represents around 14.5% (or 100 000 jobs) of total employment.
Namibia’s tourism GDP is projected to grow by 6.5% per annum between 2017 and 2020.
The latest available data on foreign tourist arrivals to Namibia is for 2016 and indicates that the country received 1.5 million foreign tourists. To obtain a more accurate picture of foreign tourists utilising tourism products in Namibia, the number of frequent visitors from neighbouring countries should be deducted as they mainly visit to shop in border towns and to visit friends and family. Once these cross-border arrivals are deducted a total of around 354 000 tourists from Germany, the UK, France and the USA are left.
Growth in foreign tourism to Namibia has been around 5% per annum between 2012 and 2016. Foreign tourists to Namibia stay on average 18 days and self-drive holidays are popular amongst foreign tourists.
The hotel statistics are supplied by STR which has analysed and reported on data from 63,000 hotels, representing 8.4 million rooms in 180 countries.
The data from STR for January to March 2019 shows that hotels in Namibia achieved an average room occupancy of 48.9%, which was an increase of 1.2% over the same period in 2018. An average room rate of US$85.70 was achieved, representing a decline of 12.8%. This decline resulted in an 11.8% decline in RevPAR to $41.87.
Average room rates may come under pressure with the opening of the 174 room Hilton Garden Inn in Windhoek during the later part of 2019.
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