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Home Startups Growing numbers of tourists to Kenya choosing to ride with Uber

Growing numbers of tourists to Kenya choosing to ride with Uber

by Milcah Lukhanyu
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The global pandemic has transformed the tourism industry and two years later, Kenya is finally seeing recovery. 

According to Trading Economics, travel bookings are on the incline as tourist arrivals in Kenya have increased from 90,487 in May 2022 to 108,166 in June 2022, a sign that the tourism industry is recovering. Airport requests alone on the Uber app in Kenya have increased by 51.93% compared to last year, according to Uber data. As a result, Jomo Kenyatta International Airport has been revealed as one of the top visited places, followed by Moi International Airport – an indication that travel is on the rise.

 Uber’s Head of East Africa, Imran Manji, said, “ a significant portion of the riders taking these trips have been national and international visitors, and Uber is enjoying steadily growing popularity as a preferred way for tourists to move around cities.” 

With Uber’s seamless technology in place in eight cities across East Africa, Uber is fast becoming a significant role player in the global tourism industry, which means more drivers have access to earning opportunities and more riders an affordable, convenient, and reliable travel solution throughout the region, at the tap of a button. 

Travelling from airports and across the city with your luggage has never been easier, with the launch of UberXL in Nairobi. This product provides seating for up to 6 people and extra luggage and is great for airport trips and even for groups who are making a business trip. 

To help reduce costs for riders and increase demand for drivers, Uber has also rolled out ChapChap Share, the option of a shared ride that gives up to 30% of savings on trip fares, when a rider is paired with a co-rider.

Imran points out that the popularity of Uber is a natural consequence of the familiarity that many visitors have with the Uber app. “For global tourists to Kenya – particularly those on a first visit – the experience of arriving in the country can be somewhat intimidating,” he explains, “so the familiarity of Uber, combined with the convenience of being able to input your destination without any language barrier challenges, makes for a very appealing proposition.” 

Safety is another key factor driving the increase in the number of tourists requesting Uber to get them to their destinations. Uber never stops raising the bar on safety and has a range of features that take advantage of the latest smartphone technology to ensure that riders and drivers feel safe.

With Safety Check-up, riders are encouraged to complete their safety profile by turning on and utilising the available features such as Trusted Contacts, PIN verification and RideCheck.

Uber’s use of GPS-based technology helps to give comfort to tourists who may otherwise have been nervous about getting lost in a city not familiar to them. “Riders can not only share their full details and estimated arrival times with others,” Manji points out, “but they also receive detailed information about their driver, vehicle and route before they ever have to step inside the vehicle.”

“We are committed to East Africa, a key contributor to the growth of our business in Sub-Saharan Africa. We’re passionate about helping people travel and discover the city with ease while also helping drivers increase earning opportunities,” concludes Manji.

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