The Uganda Tourism Board (UTB) in its continued efforts to promote Uganda as Africa’s premier tourist destination will within the next few days participate in the New York Times Travel Show scheduled to take place from January 25-27, 2019 in New York City, USA.
The Board will alongside Uganda’s Market Destination Representative in North America (PHG Group) and 8 Uganda tour operators represent the country at the New York Times Travel Show which is considered the biggest travel show in North America; bringing together over 550 exhibitors from over 170 destinations.
According to the UTB Chief Executive Officer, Stephen Asiimwe, the show is part of major outlined activities to showcase Uganda to travel enthusiasts in the American market and ensure that the number of Americans coming to Uganda remains on the rise.
Leading the delegation, Asiimwe will engage among others travel agents and experts, airlines, embassies, media in a learning experience of Uganda’s offerings. “The number of tourists from the United States to Uganda has been on the rise with a 6.6 per cent increment registered from 2016-17. This is expected to increase in the coming years with funds concealed in aggressive marketing initiatives,” Asiimwe explains.
The United States remains Uganda’s biggest source market for tourists. According to statistics, there has been a spike in the number of tourists visiting Uganda. The year 2017 saw a record 1.4 million tourist arrivals to Uganda. This was a 6 per cent increase from the previous year of 2016. The number has grown steadily at an average increase of 49, 000 visitors each year from 2013-2017.
The tourism industry currently contributes 23 per cent export income and 10 per cent to gross domestic product, making it Uganda’s largest foreign exchange earner. The industry rakes in more than US$1.4b (About Shs5.1trillion) annually and is projected to earn about Shs10 trillion by 2020.