CHARTER operators say they will face an uphill battle to bring tourists
back to Kenya despite the lifting of a flight ban into Mombasa.

The Kenya Tourist Board is to launch a recovery campaign imminently
following the Department of Transport’s announcement on Thursday that UK
airlines could fly into Mombasa with immediate effect. In May the Department of
Transport issued a directive suspending flights to Nairobi and Mombasa because
of fears of a terrorist attack. The directive for Nairobi was lifted on June 26.

But First Choice Holidays product director Tim Williamson said the
security concerns had severely damaged tourism. “The threats were so real I
think it is going to be extremely difficult to build that market again.”

Monarch, used by First Choice, is reviewing whether to resume Mombasa
flights.

TUI UK general manager for
long haul and the rest of Europe Tracy Denman-Hughes described the news as
“fantastic” but said Britannia Airways would not resume flights from Manchester
in the near future. Flights from Gatwick may restart on December 21, depending
on talks with other operators and airlines, she added.