On Thursday morning, the Association of Uganda Tour Operators held a successful orientation workshop for its new members; which the participants referred to as a very useful, informative and practical.
The meeting which was held at Hotel Africana, Kampala brought together over 50 new AUTO members to gain knowledge on the basics, as well as the best practices for operating a professional tour company in Uganda.
The induction seminar was opened by the AUTO Chief Executive Officer, Gloria Tumwesigye, who testified about how the association had made significant strides since its inception in 1995. In her remarks she welcomed the new members and thanked them for joining the prestigious fraternity of Ugandan tour operators.
In his remarks, the AUTO Board Chair, Everest Kayondo requested the new entrants to work tirelessly to further uphold the banner of the Association of Uganda Tour Operators as the leading tourism trade body uniting the country’s reputable safari companies.
This workshop followed a similar successful Business Clinic which was held in 2018 where it was then agreed to establish and maintain a mentorship program for the newer companies, using the expertise of a few of AUTO’s own members to guide the new entrants.
During the meeting, Francis Kimbowa, the director of Pinnacle Safaris highlighted the need to diversify and think differently as well as the value of carrying out targeted marketing of tourism products. “This is a very competitive business, but also one with immense opportunities for those who are well positioned”, Kimbowa added.
Byaruhanga Herbert, the Vice President of the Uganda Safari Guides Association, and the Managing Director of Bird Uganda Safaris emboldened members to seek practical knowledge in the products they intend to sell, and to employ trained safari guides.
In the same meeting, the Quality Assurance Manager of the Uganda Tourism Board, Mr. Ssemakula Samoramachelle called upon the members to exhibit professionalism and integrity in all their operations. He went ahead to thank AUTO members for “standing out of the crowd” and for operating ethically. He encouraged them to keep it up.
The workshop was organized in a bid to further set aside AUTO member companies as the number one trusted and proficient tour companies in Uganda but also to further uplift the brand of AUTO.