Adelaide Moyo Business Reporter
TOURISM players in Victoria Falls have recorded brisk business during the week as a result of the Victoria Falls Jameson Carnival that ended yesterday.
This has resulted in operators and hotels offering discounts of up to 30 percent to those travelling in groups.
The three-day event kicked off on Tuesday with an estimated 7,000 carnivalistas flocking the resort town.
Hotels’ Association of Zimbabwe (HAZ) Victoria Falls chapter chairperson John Gwese said hotels and lodges were fully booked during the week and some visitors to the resort town were forced to seek accommodation in private houses.
Some even secured accommodation across the border in Livingstone, Zambia.
“We’re very happy with the number of tourists that attended the carnival as this has boosted our business. Lodges and hotels were fully booked and the coincidence of people coming to celebrate the New Year and the traditional Christmas in our resort town has given us good business. A number of people resorted to seeking accommodation at private houses as a result,” Gwese said.
He said accommodation rates remained stable despite the overwhelming demand.
“People have a misconception that we push our prices up towards the festive season but the truth is that we maintain the rates despite the increased demand for accommodation.
Those travelling in groups enjoy discounted rates and everyone enjoys the kind of prices we offer as a destination,” said Gwese.
Employers’ Association of Tourism and Safari Operators president Clement Mukwasi said:
“The carnival means a lot to us as tour operators and we hope revellers who’re only visiting Victoria Falls for the first time will stop over at the rainforest. The kind of business brought about by the carnival is amazing and we’re happy that we will start 2016 well in terms of revenue.
“Ticketholders to the Victoria Falls Carnival were given 15 percent discount to attract them on all activities that include the bungee jump, rafting, boat cruise and game viewing among others,” Mukwasi said.
On Wednesday, tour operators’ buses were busy shuttling carnivalistas from one venue to the other.
The Jameson Victoria Falls Carnival roared into life with the train party attracting over 1,500 party goers.