The Kenya Tourist Board hosted a Kenya Travel Mart in Los Angeles and New York City last week to introduce the destination's flourishing tourist offerings to the U.S. travel trade.
In 2009 alone, Kenya's American visitors increased by 36 percent. The U.S. is the second largest inbound market to Kenya and spends over $250,000,000 there annually. With a new international campaign underway, and new offices in Los Angeles and New York, the Kenya Tourist Board is aiming to continue driving U.S. tourists to Kenya, while seeking to raise awareness on responsible tourism.
The Kenya Travel Mart featured a series of exclusive bi-coastal events where U.S. travel trade were greeted with the opportunity to meet one-on-one with expert Kenyan tour operators, hoteliers, and game park representatives. These events were designed to focus on Kenya's appeal as a prime tourist destination.
Notable speakers were enlisted for certain segments of the travel mart including Dr. M. Sanjayan, lead scientist for one of the largest conservation organizations in the world, The Nature Conservancy. Dr. Sanjayan has a long history and affinity for Kenya and has been traveling there for the past 20 years. Today, Kenya is at the heart of The Nature Conservancy's recently launched 'Africa Program' and is expected to receive the lions' share of their conservation investments in Africa. Dr. Sanjayan has received extensive media coverage for his work, which focuses on how conservation can be linked to sustainable poverty alleviation efforts and how ecosystem services, if managed, can benefit both humans and wildlife.
Other featured guest speakers included social media guru, Jeff Adelson-Yan from Levelwing Media, and travel industry experts, Keith Baron from Cragmont Baron Group and Karryn Christopher from Signature Travel Network.