Editorial

TOURISM

The paradox of Malindi: many requests, few flights

Positive numbers, but the season could be great if...

21-12-2019 by Freddie del Curatolo

Even this year it is neither a metaphor nor an exercise in exaggerated optimism to say that there is a queue to spend the holidays in Malindi and Watamu. As of this week, the hotels are registering 90% of the occupancy and will reach the so-called "fully booked" next week. We do not know how many days or weeks it will last, but surely the destination Malindi, with its satellites Watamu and Mambrui, are among the queens of the Indian Ocean for Christmas and New Year.
The arrival of foreign guests, and not only Italians like someone not attentive to the latest declinations of tourism on the coast of Kenya, there is a strong demand from Kenyans.
But (because there is often a "but" in this country) there are not enough flights from Nairobi.
The low-cost airlines are no longer such for a while, having increased prices for the route from the capital to Malindi and selling the few remaining seats available at exorbitant prices.
With a little more foresight they could have easily doubled the number of flights from December 20 to January 4 and they would certainly have filled every single flight. The only company that has dared is Jambojet that besides making the evening flight available to Kenya Airways four times a week (the famous one that was born as an extension of the Rome-Geneva-Nairobi) on Friday and Saturday has added another possibility, already overbooked. 
Nothing to do: even from neighbouring or neighboring countries, such as Uganda, Rwanda and Ethiopia ask about Malindi and Watamu, but there is nothing to do, there are no connections and Pan-African tourists are diverted to Mombasa.
The question remains to be asked why Malindi is so snobbish and has stellar prices, when in Mombasa (perhaps also because of the competition of the SGR train) the cost of tickets is almost half and even Diani, where there is less demand than Malindi (Watamu is more desired for some years now) can be reached by sky spending less.
Mysteries of Kenya, its national tourism sector and transport. 
Luckily there are those from Nairobi who do not want to give up this corner of the coast and this year decided that it is better to arrive by car, passing through the East Tsavo.
Outward safari, sea and return safari. How can I blame him? A Kenyan citizen or a resident spends much less to enter the park and with 6000 shillings of gasoline and an eight-hour trip is in the chosen vacation spot, after meeting lions and gazelles, and not a hasty hostess who serves you peanuts and natural water. 

TAGS: voli malindicoincidenze kenyaturismo malindiwatamu kenya

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FLIGHTS

by Leni Frau