By Tabora Bojang
The new chairman of the Gambia Hotels Association Bunama Njie has urged the Tourism ministry and Gambia Tourism Board to sensitise the Gambian populace on the all- inclusive light package, saying it has been misconceived and misunderstood by a lot of people who claim the service only plays good for hotels.
The service has been a subject of much controversy among tourism operators which is an option board basis of most hotels that allows guests meals and drinks included in their booking packages.
Many tourist sector vendors complain that the service only benefits hotels by increasing their income while local restaurants, craft vendors and others go without business.
However according to Njie, who is also the Senegambia Hotel General Manager, the all- inclusive package has been a lofty demand in the travel industry and that the Gambia in a bid to revatilise its tourism industry cannot afford to leave the service behind.
“The misconception needs to be wiped out and people sensitised because in actual fact, I think there are more goods to the all-inclusive package than people are conceiving. I am urging the Gambia Tourism Board and the Ministry of Tourism and Culture to adequately run information campaign on it so that the public can know about the gains of All-inclusive because it is a huge demand at the moment and all tour operators are demanding it. So if we don’t join the band wagon we will be left behind,” Njie said.
He said the benefits of the service is not only limited to the hotels but the entire populace since it also increases the spending costs of hotels by engaging in more inward spending locally on foods and drinks.
“When you stay in a hotel after two or three days in the same environment, don’t you think it will warrant you to pop out and see what obtains in the Gambia because the country is not just hotels,” he added.