Tourism authorities in Uganda have embarked on verification of accommodation facilities to push for standards to match those of the East African Community.
The exercise will involve verification, grading and certification of hotels, lodges, guesthouses, inns and motels. Those that fail will not be certified and are likely to lose out on guests.
The Uganda Tourism Board (UTB), a body mandated with hotel inspections said that the process which will benefit travellers, government and hotel owners in the long run will help align with the regional standards.
“To remain relevant in the regional and international markets, we must have the right standard of accommodation facilities,” Lilly Ajarova, the UTB CEO told The EastAfrican.
A similar exercise, supposed to be taken annually, last happened in 2017 and authorities now believe that the delay allowed hoteliers to let their guard down on quality of service.
The inspectors will be looking at both tangible and non-tangible characteristics of the enterprises that have a bearing on customer satisfaction like membership of private sector associations, quality of service, tax compliance, legality and quality of the facilities.
Uganda Tourism Association’s CEO Richard Kawere said the country has lost visitors to neighbouring Kenya and Tanzania because its accommodation facilities are not competitive.