By Titus Kakembo
THE Government has allocated funds to grade hotels. This will act as a mark of quality that consumers will rely on.
The classification ranges from one to five star. In this case, Five Star will denote top of the range.
This was revealed during a refresher workshop of the 15 people who will carry out the grading of their preference,” said the acting director of tourism at the tourism ministry, Grace Akullo Mbabazi.
“The country has a lot to benefit from grading hospitality facilities. Worldwide, hotels are classified,” Akullo said.
This comes long after Uganda hosted the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting, in 2007, when grading was first proposed.
Blandina Nshakira who has been instrumental in training of trainers in Burundi, Tanzania, Kenya and Rwanda said: “Grading is long overdue if the region is to attract and satisfy tourists from Europe, Asia and America who have sophisticated tastes.”
However, according to Nshakira star rating systems vary from country to country. The four-star ceiling has given way in some places to a five-star rating.
And lately this has been over taken by six and seven star ratings for hotels in Europe and the United Arab Emirates.
“Much as Serena and Sheraton hotels may be rated as five star, they will have to meet our set standards if they are to maintain that rating,” he said.
“There are also guidelines for home stay service providers, restaurants, guest houses, hostels and camping sites,” Nshakira said.
The EAC classification covers physical and tangible characteristics of accommodation. These comprise; location, dimension of rooms, supplies in the bathrooms, frequency of change of linen and elegance,” she added.