Travel and Tourism Opportunity in Botswana
Market overview and Trade Data
Botswana’s unique natural resources provide it with a significant advantage in the tourism sector. Tourism is a major contributor to the national economy and has tremendous potential for growth. It accounts for approximately 10 percent of GDP.
The Botswana Government is committed to growing the sector as part of its economic diversification strategy and encourages new investments and joint ventures in tourism and continues to play a major role in developing tourism projects.
The sector has began to rebound in 2022 after COVID 19 where revenue fell 95% , due to more relaxed travel restrictions and more tourism activities. Botswana seeks to broaden its tourism base by adding more products and increasing the geographic spread of tourism.
Albeit tourism in Botswana has focused almost exclusively on high-end consumers, there is now expansion into the mid-range market in an effort to increase revenue and jobs for local Batswana.
New Policies by the Government of Botswana in 2020
There has been announced a new tourism policy that reserved tourism licenses exclusively for Botswana citizen operators.
The government has also reserved new safari concessions for citizens.
New hotels (including U.S. brands) and conference facilities have opened in the last five years, increasing the country’s capacity to host international conferences and events.
The government continues to upgrade infrastructure in wildlife-protected areas (natural parks and game reserves).
Government regulators continue to approve the opening of lodge sites within four of the largest national parks.
Botswana re-introduced trophy hunting in 2019 through a permitting and quota system, often allowing community-based trusts to issue the licences and benefit from the revenues.
Botswana Principal Tourism Organisations
The Botswana Tourism Organization (BTO), a quasi-government entity, is responsible for all operational functions of the tourism sector such as marketing, investment promotion, and the grading of tourism facilities to international standards.
The Hospitality and Tourism Association of Botswana (HATAB) is a non- profit organization that serves as the governing body of hospitality and tourism industries. This wholly member funded organization exists to promote, encourage, and police excellence in hospitality and tourism in Botswana.
Best Sector Prospects in Tourism
- Midrange tourism excursions
- Hotels, Lodges, Resorts
- Direct flights,
Opportunities in Travel and Tourism in Botswana
There are opportunities for joint ventures for :
- Hotel expansions and start-ups along the Trans-Kalahari Highway, joining Botswana and Namibia.
- Development of lodges in the Kgalagadi Trans-frontier Park, Central Kalahari Game Reserve, Makgadikgadi Pans National Park, and forest reserves surrounding Chobe National Park.
- A memorandum of understanding to establish a trans-frontier conservation area, commonly referred to as the Limpopo/ Shashe Transfrontier Conservation Area (TFCA), was signed in 2006. This is a unique partnership between the governments of Botswana, South Africa, and Zimbabwe, the private sector, and the local communities to create new opportunities for eco-tourism.
- The TFCA was renamed the Greater Mapungubwe TFCA on June 19, 2009. The Greater Mapungubwe is similar in concept to the Kavango-Zambezi (KAZA) TFCA that seeks to connect Protected Areas in Zambia, Botswana, Namibia, Zimbabwe, and Angola. Member countries are working to simplify travel between protected areas in the five-country region through the implementation of the KAZA UniVisa for Botswana and the region.