With the 2015 safari peak season approaching, safari companies want travelers to feel safe to visit Tanzania. “Travelers are as likely to contract Ebola in New York as they are in Tanzania,” says Murtaza Hasanie of Authentic African Safaris, reacting to a report from SafariBookings.com, published September 22, 2014.One of the most talked-about media stories of 2014 was the Ebola outbreak. With the help of media outlets, Americans have become terrified the disease is going to sweep the nation. In a seemingly natural course of events, Westerners have all but cut off any travel to Africa.
This has caused a significant decrease in attendance on safaris, one of Africa’s most lucrative tourism industries. Despite minimal chance of exposure to Ebola while in safari countries, many safari companies have experienced a drop in attendance. According to a survey conducted by SafariBookings.com and published September 22, 2014, more than half of the 500 companies interviewed have reported a decline of 20-70% in bookings since the Ebola outbreak.
Murtaza Hasanie of Authentic African Safaris is one of those safari tour companies affected by the Ebola hype. “There’s plenty of news out there reporting the Ebola scare, but hardly any news giving relief to tourism countries like Tanzania, which has been unaffected by the outbreak,” Murtaza states.
“Risk of Ebola while on safari in Tanzania is just hype,” says Murtaza. “Travelers are as likely to contract Ebola in New York as they are in Tanzania,” he continued.
The distance from the Ebola outbreak area to Tanzania is about the same distance as the Ebola outbreak area to New York City. The top safari countries (Tanzania, Kenya, Botswana) are more than 3,000 miles away from the Ebola-stricken countries (Guinea, Sierra Leone and Liberia). In addition, many precautions have been taken by authorities and safari employees to make sure visitors are as safe as possible. Such precautions include border entry points and preventative screening at international airports.
Murtaza wants to stress to potential travelers that Ebola “is a scary disease and should be taken seriously. But outside West Africa, the real risk for travelers is, effectively, zero.”
Another facet of the hype is that the Ebola outbreak is coming to an end. As of January 18th 2015, the outbreak of Ebola in Mali has ended, according to Malian authorities and the World Health Organization. Yet, this hasn’t been reported on nearly as much as the initial outbreak.
While it is smart to be cautious, fear of contracting Ebola should not keep travelers from visiting Tanzania. The hype that has surrounded Ebola is just that: hype. Tanzania is full of natural wonders and adventures; free from exposure of the Ebola outbreak.
Authentic African Safaris, as well as hundreds of other safari tour companies affected by the Ebola hype, hope that westerners get reassurance and facts about the outbreak, so they can continue to feel safe booking their next safari adventure.
Published: March 31, 2015. By PRWeb
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