Kish Tourism Hit Record Low

Kish Tourism Hit Record LowKish Tourism Hit Record Low

The number of tourists visiting Kish Island has reached a record low, which is unprecedented in the past 20 years.

"The 2017 Kish Summer Festival attracted fewer tourists compared to previous years, with hotels operating at about 50% lower capacity," Masihollah Safa, the head of Kish Island's Society of Hoteliers, was quoted as saying by Mana.

Apart from the hot summer, the start of the academic year and the mourning month of Muharram also adversely affected the island's tourism.

According to Safa, the current situation is the result of Kish Free Zone Organization's failure to implement plans for promoting tourism.

The main objectives of the plan were price reduction in tourism services and mass marketing, as well as attraction of reliable sponsors.

"None of these objectives has been realized and the situation is worse than in previous years," he said.

"Kish Airlines, for instance, has refused to reduce airfares while its primary function was to help promote the Island's tourism."

Safa complained that the airline has instead invested on developing its international flights.

He also blamed the recession on KFZO's surprising decision to issue permits for vacation rentals across the island.

In late summer, Ali Asghar Mounesan, the former head of KFZO, was appointed the head of Iran's Cultural Heritage, Handicrafts and Tourism Organization and Mohammad Ebrahim Ansari Lari replaced him.

Safa expressed hope that the new KFZO head will help improve the conditions.


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