Zimbabwe officially green-lights resumption of tourism activities

Zimbabwe officially resumed international tourism after months of border and international airspace in lockdown

The decision to resume tourism activities comes after a nationwide lockdown on March 30 that lasted for over seven months.

Zim in diamond policy shift - Zimbabwe SituationThe Hon, N.M Ndhlovu, the Minister of Environment, Climate, Tourism, and Hospitality (seen left), stated that he was pleased to announce that the cabinet had approved, "all tourism activities to fully resume operations of business"

The major tourist centers that will resume fully in Zimbabwe are safaris, game driver zip lining, helicopter rides, bungee jumping, lion elephant rides, lion walks, boat operation on lakes for leisure and fishing. Many other tourism activities that have yet to begin full operations are: restaurants, hotels, accommodations, land-based casinos in hotel space, cafes and bars. However, the country border's closures have had a devastating blow to the local economy that relies heavily on tourism. In which in 2018, Zimbabwe recorded an all-time high of 2.6 million tourists in 2018 only. The government plans and goal is to build on tourist arrivals' momentum in 2018 and equate 5 billion dollars by 2025 through tourism.

The Zimbabwean government has been eager to restart inbound and outbound tourism as quickly and safely as possible due to the lockdown's devastating blow to the economy. Apart from Zimbabwe dwindling local economic conditions, the land-based casino operators also felt the lockdown's pinch amid COVID-19. Several land-based casinos also serve as tourist attractions and are strategically located in hotels, resorts, and bars where tourist arrivals visit.

For the land-based casino operators, this development is intriguing. Most of the land-based operators rely on international tourists for business survival as tourists are an essential component of their sales. Zimbabwe boasts some fascinating land-based gambling facilities, which are over eight brick-mortar casinos at writing. Four are located in its capital. Almost all of these are operated in dedicated casino spaces of major hotels and tourist resorts in Zimbabwe.

By Adeleye Awakan:  Author for E-play Africa, on gaming and gambling industry, AI, Blockchain, Fintech, researcher, and consultant with over 5 years of experience in the Africa gaming and gambling ecosystem. Connect with him on Linkeldln, Adeleye Awakan Skype: live:a2b5e96b401c7985 Telegram: @AdeleyeAwakan, Email:gableee4all@yahoo.com    

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