Entertainment standards to be ready in June, says tourism agency
By MATHIAS RINGA
The Tourism Regulatory Authority (TRA) has shifted its focus to improving quality of entertainment just weeks after it concluded classification of hotels across the country.
This is one of the reforms aimed at raising the profile of Kenya as a destination in the region.
The agency said it was working on standards to guide quality of entertainment at various joints. At the moment, the TRA lacks criteria for regulating services of discotheques, nightclubs, bars and other entertainment spots.
“As a regulator, we are co-ordinating the exercise of developing minimum standards for entertainment providers for them to upgrade their facilities and services to international requirements,” said TRA director-general Lagat Kipkorir.
“Our goal is to ensure that customers are getting value for their money in a bid to improve the competitiveness of the industry countrywide.”
He said the TRA will use the draft guide to develop minimum standards used for improving services.
“We expect to have the minimum standards for the entertainment industry by June to pave the way for the implementation process in July,” he added.
In October, the TRA concluded classification of hotels, resorts, lodges and camps, hoping to standardise the quality of service offered to tourists.
The agency has been receiving the input of players from the entertainment world, he added.
“We shall then present the minimum standard draft to entertainment investors and stakeholders around the country so that they can present their views to improve the proposed criteria,” he said. Mr Kipkorir said the 47 county governments will be involved in the revamp since they license entertainment providers.
Kenya Association of Hotelkeepers and Caterers (KAHC) Coast branch executive officer Sam Ikwaye supported coming up with minimum standards, saying that was the cure for poor standards.
“Entertainment is a major tourist attraction globally. For the country to woo more entertainment enthusiasts, the providers must offer quality services to customers,” he added. Mr Ikwaye called on tourism players to invest in the entertainment segment in Mombasa following the collapse of many nightclubs.
“At the moment, there is little nightlife in Mombasa as most of the nightclubs closed down. Visitors have to travel to Mtwapa in Kilifi County for entertainment,” he said.