Hotel workers must change their attitudes towards local tourists

Monday May 26 2014

Last week, President Kenyatta unveiled measures to make Kenyans visit our tourist facilities in view of the declining numbers of tourists from our traditional European markets.

Whereas these are commendable, a lot needs to be done to lure locals tourists.

The attitude of the owners and employees of these establishments have to change for Kenyans to feel appreciated.

Right from the gatekeepers of these facilities to the top managers, discrimination against the African tourist is so rampant that many able Kenyans lose interest.

If you are an African and you visit a beach hotel without driving, the watchman at the gate will turn you away, but when a mzungu dressed casually does the same, the same watchman will in fact salute him as he quickly opens the gate!

Should you be lucky to get past the watchman, the waiters will indeed be waiting to make your stay a nightmare. A local tourist is regarded as stingy when it comes to tips, so the waiters avoid serving them with the same enthusiasm they accord foreigners.

There are instances where local tourists wait for hours before being served, as the waiters scramble to serve the forex-loaded mzungu.

Hotel owners and their employees must also change their attitude towards residents otherwise no matter what incentives the President gives, it will be an exercise in futility.

BASILIO CHABARI, Chuka