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Tuesday, May 24, 2022

Gambia targets 150,0000 tourists

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By Tabora Bojang

Following a gloomy period amid the Covid-19 crisis, the Director General of Gambia Tourism Board has disclosed that 150,0000 tourists are expected in The Gambia this season as the country eyes significant recovery of tourist arrivals.

Abubacarr Camara was speaking at the Banjul Airport following the maiden landing of renowned French aviation operator Air France in the Gambia bringing 132 tourists from several European destinations.

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“We are very optimistic that tourism will restart in the Gambia after a 2-year absence and if everything goes as planned, we are going to enjoy a good tourist season. We have received a lot of confirmation from some of our tour operators as well as some normal scheduled flights such as Turkish Airline, Royal Air Maroc and Brussels, Vueling, and other sub-regional airlines like Asky and Air Peace. And according to our projection, we would be reaching about 150 thousand tourists this year,” Camara said.

According to DG Camara, with the widespread introduction of travel restrictions, airport and border closures, tourism in the Gambia was significantly grounded to a halt affecting all spheres of social and economic lives.

Mr. Camara, who replaces erstwhile GTB boss Abdoulie Hydara following a shakeup at the GTB last year, added that the coming of Air France to the country’s aviation market will go a long way in addressing the perennial constraint of air access.   

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The airline is expected to link Banjul to its global hub at the Charles de Gaulle Airport in Paris with daily flights during the winter.

“Of course, I am very excited that during my time we were able to have our first flight from France. Air access has been a great problem for Gambia tourism and now that we have an added scheduled flight from France, it is going to be a good hub for all the other source markets in Europe.”

DG Camara noted that the GTB is stepping up its efforts to rebuild and reboot tourism in the country in consideration of the Gambia’s huge potential.

“We are doing our best within our means to do aggressive marketing. Our Director of Marketing is currently at the WTO to do discussions with operators to boost their confidence in destination Gambia,” he said.

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