Tourism in Cabo Verde is growing sturdily as its goal of soon reaching the one million mark for its tourists will be coming to realization.
This according to the country’s Tourism Minister, Hon. Jose Goncalves who in an interview with VoyagesAfriq at this year’s WTM London, said the country is working on increasing its tourist numbers, especially European tourists in order to reach their target.
For the tourists, Hon. Goncalves said Cabo Verde presents the best destination for people to enjoy nature, beautiful oceans and quality music.
‘’Most West African countries offer a diverse product base. Some have deserts, others have culture whilst Cabo Verde presents a unique island environment mixed with all what West African presents as it pertains in the Caribbean’’ he said.
He emphasized on the need to have more West Africans visit West African countries.
“We in West Africa have to travel more between our countries. We often spend our vacations abroad shopping but there are so many treasures and value that we must add to each other as neighbours by participating in each other’s offerings,” he resonated.
According to him, Africans know well enough about each other and therefore the need to be more open minded and adventurous to go across one country to another.
He further regretted the inadequate provision for air connectivity, which he observed was greatly hampering movement amongst West Africans.
“Air travel today for tourism seems to be the most dynamic in terms of growth. Looking at West Africa they are very few and operating irregularly.”
He indicated that most airports have received some major investments to help in mobility but that the availability was very crucial in getting people to move around.
“There is often a misconception that only the rich can move by air. It’s not reserved for the exclusives. To get more people to travel in West Africa we have to encourage the middle class to join”
He noted that the number of middle class air travel in the sub region is about 80 million, a sizable number for a population of 375 million. “I think that could be a good segment of the market to our tourism development”
As part of measures to address this phenomenon, the Cabo Verde Tourism Minister revealed that the country will be hosting the first UNWTO/ICAO Tourism and Transport Ministerial Conference to take place from the 27th to 29th March 2019 with focus on strengthening the synergy between air travel and tourism.