Zimbabwe has been awarded the most sought after prize of Top Emerging Travel Destination of 2012 by the Travel and Leisure magazine of China. This is one of the major travel awards in Asia which is of international repute. Zimbabwe emerged the winner in a process that included competition from various destinations across the globe. The announcement was made recently at a ceremony held in Beijing, China where Zimbabwe was represented by its Ambassador to China, His Excellency Fredrick Shava.
In its citation on Zimbabwe, the awarding authority noted that, the selection campaign, which took place in the mainland China, Taiwan and Hong Kong, Macau and overseas in the past year, featured recommendations by a wide range of readers, survey by editors and journalists. The processes also included experience by frequent guests and comprehensive assessments by authoritative experts.
Commenting on this development, the Chief Executive of the Zimbabwe Tourism Authority (ZTA) Karikoga Kaseke said this is another milestone and achievement by the destination. “We are naturally gratified by this achievement which comes at the back of concerted efforts by the ZTA of consolidating our tourism market share not only in Asia but even in traditional markets by continuously changing their perceptions of our country. Zimbabwe has won numerous accolades before but this particular one from the media is indicative of the dividends being paid by our destination marketing strategies as under pinned by the Destination Image Transformation Programme,” said Mr. Kaseke.
Some of the programs employed by the ZTA in its concerted efforts of tackling the negative perceptions in the source markets include the hosting of the international media on familiarization tours, Goodwill Ambassadorial programme, Celebrity Host, participation at international travel fairs and road shows.