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Azimio demos: Hoteliers count losses running into millions of shillings as tourists cancel bookings ahead of Easter holidays

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The ongoing political crisis in Kenya has negatively impacted the hospitality sector, with reports of hotel cancellations in parts of the Rift Valley and the Coast.

A cruise ship destined for Mombasa changed course to Tanzania, where it will dock in Zanzibar and Dar el Salaam for six days before sailing to South Africa. The MV Seabourn Sojourn had 800 tourists and was expected to spend three days in Kenya, with each passenger spending a minimum of about $200 a day.

Hoteliers estimate that they have lost $800,000 due to the cancellation.

At the Masai Mara National Reserve and in Nakuru County, hotels are counting losses running into millions of shillings. Dozens of local and international tourists have cancelled bookings ahead of the Easter holidays, leading to a negative impact on the tourism sector.

The protests may erode the gains that the tourism sector made after recovering from the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic period.

The cancellation of the cruise ship is a significant blow to the hospitality sector, with bookings falling by over 50% compared to previous years.

The National Assembly Departmental Committee on Tourism and Wildlife, which met with players in the cruise ship business at the port of Mombasa, said that Kenya has lost millions of shillings due to the cancellation.

Unless the political situation improves, there will be massive job losses in the hotel industry in the coming weeks, coupled with depressed tax revenues and more economic pain for all Kenyans.

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