Is Rwanda’s Tourism Marketing Strategy Yielding Results?


Rwanda is a land locked country situated in Central Africa. It’s is also known as ‘the land of a thousand hills’ – the relief which has facilitated its growing tourism sector. Rwanda is among the countries with the Virunga Volcanoes including Mountain Sabyinyo, Mountain Karisoke/ Visoke, Mountain Karisimbi and so on.  The amazing relief naturally markets the Rwanda’s tourism sector majorly Gorilla trekking which is done at the slopes of the Virunga ranges.

In May 2017, Rwanda positioned itself as a high end tourism destination. The Rwanda Development Board increased its gorilla permit from USD750 to USD1500. Following suit, there are several high-end safari lodges that have been opened up in Rwanda. These include Bisate Lodge, One and Only Lodge, Gorilla Sanctuary Lodge etc. Today Rwanda attracts mostly luxury travelers who go for the popular Rwanda gorilla treks in the Volcanoes National Park.

Later in May 2018, Rwanda marketed the “Visit Rwanda” brand through sports. Rwanda signed three years contract with the English Premier League side – Arsenal Football Club. Arsenal players started putting on T-shirts with the brand “Visit Rwanda” aiming at marketing Rwanda tourism sector. The contract will make Arsenal team the brand Ambassador of Rwanda Tourism industry. Arsenal is one of the popular international clubs playing in English premier league.

Rwanda Tourism Board (RDB) markets through social media like face book, YouTube, Twitter and so on. On social media, RDB posts paragraphs with photos, films/ clips showing culture, wildlife, relief, drainage and so on. There is also specific websites designed by Rwanda Tourism Board (RDB) together with different tour operators.

Rwanda Tourism board also markets on bill boards, Flyers, journals and so on. Such marketing equipment is given out freely to tourists and tour operators and other stake holders. The bill boards are displayed in Rwanda and outside Rwanda including European countries among others. The aim is to make people aware of the tourist potentials in Rwanda.

Rwanda participates in world travel markets held around the world. While at the world travel market, Rwanda set up stalls displaying tourist attractions in Rwanda including statues representing Mountain Gorillas, Chimpanzees and birds among others.

The Gorilla Naming ceremony celebrated every year “Kwita Izina”. During the ceremony, new born baby Gorillas are given names easy identification. The annual ceremonies are embraced by Government official from different countries including the current Rwanda president, Paul Kagame. Gorilla naming ceremonies is also attended by tour operators, explorers, tourists, Rwandans, wildlife Agencies and well-wishers among others.

Fam trips are organized to motivate tour operators and other stake holders. In 2013, Rwanda government through its body Rwanda Tourism Board (RDB), organized a massive tour operators’ Fam trip which was attended by tour operators from Uganda, Rwanda, Kenya, Tanzania among others. The aim was to boost Rwanda’s tourism Industry by showing why, where, what is available in Rwanda.

Rwanda Tourism Board also markets through mass media like Television, Radios and Newspapers among others. The marketing articles are written in new papers, films are played on Televisions, and Audio clips are played on both National and International TVs and Radios among others.

Rwanda Government give positive updates about Rwanda on security, wildlife, Culture, Historical and so on. By doing so, more and more visitors are attracted to visit Rwanda for business, Tourism and so on. Once foreigners visit Rwanda, they spend foreign currencies in Rwanda which widens the country’s tax base.

The annual Genocide Commemoration in Rwanda. This is meant to remember and condemn any Genocide activities never to happen again in Rwanda. More so, it’s done to comfort all those who were victimized during the 1994 Rwanda Genocide. The commemoration spear headed by the current Rwanda president Paul kagame moves for weeks while visiting each Genocide memorial Museum including Murambi Genocide Memorial Museum, Nyamata Genocide Memorial Museum, Gisozi genocide Memorial Museum, Bisesero Genocide memorial site and so many others. The group of commemorators who put on purple color and move on laying flowers on each mass graves.


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