African Safari Travelers Vote - East Africa Is Still the Preferred Safari Destination
November 23, 2006 (PRLEAP.COM) Travel NewsNairobi, Kenya, November 23, 2006 — Want to go on an African Safari but not sure which destination will offer the best value for money? Then East Africa should be at the top of the list, according to web surfers who took part in a poll ran by Africa Point (http://www.africapoint.com), an online travel agent that offers travel bookings for African destinations.
The poll was carried between September and November 2006 to determine the travel preferences of its visitors at Africa Point's website (http://www.africapoint.com).
54% of the 643 visitors who took part in the poll felt that East Africa is still the leading safari and ecotourism destination in Africa. Indian Ocean Islands came in second with a vote of 19%. Southern African countries garnered 17% of the vote; North Africa got 5% while Western Africa got 1% of the votes. 4% preferred other African countries.
"Many tourists are attracted to Kenya and Tanzania due to its beautiful natural attractions and abundance of exotic wildlife in its parks. The destinations are also relatively inexpensive to visit," said Ashiembi wa Ndukwe, marketing manager of Africa Point.
"April to May and November to 15th December are the low seasons in these two countries because of the rains. Lodges are a bit cheaper and the crowds are fewer compared to the months of February and July to October which are high season months. We advise travelers to make bookings early so as to avoid losing out on accommodation at the last minute."
One of the memorable tourist attractions that occur between Kenya and Tanzania is the annual wildebeest migration. On 17th November 2006, the migration was declared as one of the seven New Wonders of The World by a panel of wildlife experts and broadcast on "Good Morning America's Weekend Edition" show in ABC News.
This event occurs between the months of July and October every year where over 1.5 million wildebeest, driven by natural instinct, begin to move from the Serengeti in Tanzania relentlessly tracked by Africa's great predators and cross through the crocodile infested Mara River that borders the two countries to forage for food in Masai Mara covering a distance of over 1,800 miles.
"Its also fascinating that visitors would prefer visiting Indian Ocean Islands over South African countries. Seychelles and Mauritius are expensive destinations which give an indication that travelers have deep pockets and would be willing to pay more," said Andrew Muigai, Managing Director of Africa Point. "Seychelles and Mauritius are famous for their beautiful beaches and marine parks."
In another follow-up poll which 953 people took part, visitors were asked what factor played the biggest role in determining which website they use to book their Africa travel services. 48% said price played the biggest factor, 27% felt that availability of comprehensive travel information at travel sites was more important, 13% voted that ease of navigation of a site played a major role. 5% voted that referrals by friends influenced their buying preferences while 4% said recognized website brand names were more important. 3% voted that other factors influenced them.
This poll result reaffirmed some of the typical shopping patterns of most travelers. When researching, most travelers use the internet to look for better discounts.
"We find it interesting that visitors would consider availability of comprehensive travel information at sites more important than recognized website brand names when making booking decisions," said Ashiembi. "I believe that content is what drives the web. The more useful and interesting content a website has the more successful it will be at gaining trust and selling to its
Africa remains the last natural habitat for a majority of the wildlife that visitors cherish and admire. It is also the only preserved and pristine continent that prides a combination of culture and traditions from yesteryear creating a true to life experience for all visitors.
According to World Tourism Organization (WTO), a specialized agency of the United Nations that serves as a global forum for tourism policy issues and practical source of tourism know-how, Africa led in growth in 2005, estimated at 10 percent.
Tourism, which is one of the world's leading and the fastest developing industries, is rapidly making an economic impact in Africa. In 2005, an estimated 36.7 million tourists visited Africa, up from 33.3 million in 2004, according to statistics released by WTO.
About Africa Point
Africa Point is a travel agency offering online bookings for travel related services including hotels, tours, car rentals and flights to top travel destinations in Africa through its website: http://www.africapoint.com.
Some of the countries that it covers include Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Egypt, Mauritius, Seychelles, South Africa, Botswana, Zimbabwe, Namibia and Ethiopia. The company's headquarters are based in Nairobi, Kenya
Africa Point is also a member of ASTA - American Society of Travel Agents and has helped thousands of inbound visitors from over 50 countries worldwide discover Africa. For more information contact Gerald Njuguna at +254-20-2737133