Business people in Luderitz have welcomed the recent introduction of the flight route by FlyNamibia connecting Eros Airport to the southern coastal town.
FlyNamibia says the introduction of the new route created opportunities for Namibians and international travellers, providing seamless access to Luderitz and its potential economic expansion.
The General Manager for Nest Hotel, Ulf Grunewald, says, "We are very thankful for the airline, it does make a difference. More and more business people are using the airline. I still believe that tourists, as such, are more interested in seeing the rest of the country, not just flying down Luderitz and flying back. They normally travel by car or by bus, individuals travelling right through to Luderitz, but the business community has definitely made a difference, and if you look at flights, they are fully booked."
Grunewald also pinned high hopes for the town's tourism industry, with the number of tourists rising steadily.
"We are not back to the levels that we should have been or that we were in 2019, however, through better business flow with business visitors, we have managed to keep Luderitz going very positively, and I think here at Nest Hotel one of our issues is always getting rooms filled. In general, we are doing very well. We are looking forward to having more tourism down at the Nest Hotel again. Big groups are very few and far between, that is still a thing from the days of COVID-19. I think it will come back over a long period of time, and if I look at the whole season in general, we are looking again at the similar season before COVID-19."
The emerging oil, gas, and green hydrogen industries, Grunewald says, have made a difference in the southern harbour town's economy.
"We definitely see more activity, we see that people are coming to Luderitz who would not have been here in the past. We see, however, that many people think they come to Luderitz to get a job and so on, and they do not realise there are not thousands of jobs available in Luderitz, these will only come once final decisions have been made. At this point in time, you come to Luderitz; you better have enough money to go back to where you came from because there are few job opportunities at this point, but we believe that will change."