Fee reduction for two parks thought not nearly enough

KENYA WILDLIFE SERVICE LOWERS PARK FEES BUT ONLY FOR NAKURU AND AMBOSELI

(Posted 18th June 2014)

The Kenya Wildlife Sevice has now issued a public notice, following an announcement made by the president in response to the sharp downturn of fortunes of the country’s tourism industry, that park entrance fees for Nakuru and Amboseli National parks have been lowered by 10 US Dollars for foreign nonresident visitors, i.e. tourists.

PUBLIC NOTICE

Public Notice on Review of Park Entry Fees 2014

Following the Presidential directive of 23rd

May 2014 on review of park entry fees, Kenya Wildlife Service

(KWS) would like to inform our esteemed clients that park entry fees to Lake Nakuru and Amboseli

National Parks have been reviewed downward for Citizens and Non-Residents as follows:

Amboseli & Lake Nakuru National Park Citizen

Adult

Citizen

Child

Non-Resident

Adult

Non-Resident

Child

Current Park Fee KShs. 1,200 Kshs.350 USD.90 USD.55

Revised Park Fee KShs. 1,000 Kshs.200 USD.80 USD.40

The changes take effect from 12th June 2014.

For more information, visit our website: www.kws.go.ke

While this measure will bring a little relief for the cost of safaris in Kenya, have leading stakeholders taken issue with the recent budget announcement, which left VAT on tourism services, transport and park entrance fees: ‘First let me thank KWS for making this official. Second I must ask why not reduce park entrance fees for all the other parks also by 10 US Dollars? But most important, why has the government not listened and removed VAT from tourism services? THAT is the real issue here, for the safari operators and by the way for our airlines too. Kenya Airways pays huge tax bills now for new aircraft and Ethiopian and Emirates and those guys must be laughing all the way to the bank. What is it this government does not understand? They will have a rude shock when the next elections come because with their track record so far who will vote them again?

There is growing bitterness if not outright disillusionment among key tourism players who, while continuing to battle negative publicity from abroad do it not for the sake of government but to simply see their own business survive: ‘The government has selectively announced some of the measures our industry leaders suggested but left out the most important ones. Like before it is too little too late and there will be a price to be paid and sadly it will be paid by those who loose their jobs and livelihoods and not the bigwigs in our government’ added another regular source, underscoring an alarming shift in affection away from a government which is increasingly seen as anti tourism and anti aviation. Time will tell so it is watch and see and staying tuned to this space for future updates.

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