As Nairobi continues to stake claim to being Africa’s top investment destination, a report by Mastercard has revealed that overnight foreign visitors spent a whopping Ksh28 billion in Nairobi last year.
Mastercard’s Global Cities Index released on September 27 reveals that Nairobi is the fifth most preferred city in Sub-Saharan Africa by international visitors.
Lagos(Nigeria), Kampala(Uganda), Accra(Ghana) and Dakar(Senegal) occupy first to fourth spots respectively.
The report further reveals that 400,000 international visitors touched down in Nairobi last year for business or leisure and spent an average of Ksh5,000 per day for 13 nights.
The picture was not without blemish for the city under the sun as the report reveals that despite the general notion that Nairobi is a tourist hotspot, tourists only spent an average of Ksh5,000 per day in 2017.
It remains to be seen whether Nairobi’s ranking will improve in 2018. Even so, a number of high profile dignitaries have made to Nairobi this year either on business deals, special tours or on state visits, including British Prime Minister Theresa May and former US President Barrack Obama. American First Lady Melania Trump as well as British Royal Prince William are also expected to visit the city on their Kenyan tours in October and late September respectively.
Mastercard projects that Lagos will continue being Africa’s top destination in 2018 with 1.5 million foreigners expected to visit the populous city. The report however states that visitors tend to stay to stay in Lagos for seven nights and spend only Ksh5700 per night considerably less than what they spend in Nairobi and other African cities.
According to the report, rich African culture in the five cities was what appealed most to the visitors as the countries in question continue to invest heavily in infrastructure to spur economic growth.
Bangkok(Thailand) remains the world’s top destination. The city recorded 20 million international visitors who spent an average of Ksh17,300 per day for five nights.
London(UK) played second fiddle to Bangkok attracting 19.3 million visitors who spent Ksh 15,300 per night for 6 nights.
Paris(France), Dubai(UAE) and Singapore were the world’s third, fourth and fifth top destinations attracting 17.4 million, 15.7 million and 13.9 million visitors who spent Ksh30,100, Ksh53,700 and Ksh28,600 for an average of 4 days respectively.