30 May 2013 04:30
WINDHOEK, 30 MAY (NAMPA) ? Poor customer service at the Ministry of Home Affairs and Immigration (MHAI) tops the list of the ?worst experiences? for tourists visiting Namibia, a recent study revealed.
The Namibia Tourist Exist Survey of 2012/2013, which was launched here on Wednesday, also found that tourists listed 'feeling unsafe' as another of their worst experiences in this country.
Speaking at the launch of the survey report, Environment and Tourism Minister Uahekua Herunga commended the research team, and said it is nearly impossible for Namibia to meet the goals in Vision 2030 without accurate and reliable tourism statistics.
He pointed out that tourism will be a key catalyst for growth and nation-building if the current trend of developing tourism products in a sustainable manner continues.
?Information is very important to all tourism stakeholders for planning and the development of tourism enterprises, marketing and promotion, the allocation of funds for tourism development and conservation,? he noted.
The Ministry of Environment and Tourism (MET) and the Millennium Challenge Account Namibia (MCA-N) conducted the survey in collaboration with Acorn Tourism Consulting and the Social Impact Assessment and Policy Analysis Corporation (SIAPAC) Namibia.
Speaking at the same occasion, MCA-N Director of Monitoring and Evaluation Kandi Shejavali said the survey is a significant milestone in terms of availing fresh information on tourists' impressions of Namibia, places they visited and patterns of expenditure.
MCA-Namibia spent US dollars 366 000 (about N.dollars 3.6 million) on the project.
A total of 6 500 respondents were interviewed, and the survey was carried out during three separate survey periods that fell between June 2012 and January 2013 at the capital?s Hosea Kutako International Airport, Walvis Bay airport, Buitepos, Wenela, Oshikango, Ariamsvlei and Noordoewer.
The top 10 most-visited places in Namibia are Windhoek, Swakopmund, Etosha, Sossusvlei, Walvis Bay, Fish River Canyon, Damaraland, Namib Naukluft, Luderitz and Spitzkoppe.
Wildlife was the most significant attraction for tourists when they selected Namibia as their destination.
Interview periods were carefully selected to ensure a representative sample of tourists from the high, medium and low seasons. Face-to-face interviews were conducted.
The previous visitor survey was carried out in 2002.