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We had 2 Swedish groups lined up for this season. We cancelled because we could not get a work visa for the SA guide who speaks Swedish.48 Clients will not be spending 10 nights in Namibia. Can they afford to loose this business?
write an official letter to the Namibian tourism minister, and make sure the media in namibia and the general travel trade media get it and the international travel media get it. Thats the only way single voices can get heard. They don't like media and you at least have a record. It also starts a media string on the subject. That way the authorities there can response with a fix it plan.
What Namibia cannot afford are illegally working guides. If you work in Namibia for money, you need a visa. If you are a Guide, a Doctor or whoever... only (!!!) with tourist guides Home Affairs was very unbureaucratic in the last years, i.e. simply allowed them without a work visa. That the procedure should be streamlined is another question.
SA implemented the child birth certificate nonsense, lost of lot of tourist, the disease hit some of the neighbouring countries. They don't seem to learn and countries inherit each others stupidity! One would think it is a learning curve, clearly it is not.
They have no clue of business ethics! We understand they want to create jobs for locals but the way they think is appalling!! When will they wake up?
In 2018 Namibia saw a decline in tourism, depending on the source, of between 8% and 12%. The booking pace in the first half year of 2019, depending on the source, was down about 15% to 20%. You wonder why? There are many reasons for it. One of this is the one mentioned above, but 99% of them are homemade issues.
It was a horrible experience! The best was that I had the approval and payment but could not get the actual permit out of Home Affairs office for 8 days. This was totally unnecessary to the admin staff of the company, guide, Driver and the clients in the end. I want to thank everyone who assisted me during that time at Highline Tours, Lukas at Paarl Rock and all the people behind the scenes.
What a total shame! These African countries are chasing away tourism one step at a time, its a total lack of knowledge on how tourism works and how much it actually brings in. Ignorance!!
Ye....what do we expect! Make it even more difficult, then tourism numbers will get better.... maybe cycyatrists might help, but I have my doubts.
And what about a tour escort/tour director ? Do they require same permit? They aren't replacing local guide but rather travelling with clients.
Is he/she working against money? If yes, a work visa is needed.