Domestic Tourism Issues in Namibia

On a recent study via the Namibian Tourism Board regarding domestic tourism in Namibia, a conclusion was found that many respondents commented on the high prices of tourism services and accommodations. From the distributed questionnaire for a majority of Namibian locals, interviews, and observations, it was found that tourism in Namibia is focused primarily on the international market. This causes prices to increase beyond the affordability of many Namibians, which deters many potential tourists from travelling. Although the domestic tourism industry is currently not a major contributor to the Namibian economy, data analysis discovered that Namibians do spend money on travel but the amount spent and the amount Namibians are willing to spend differ greatly. If the Namibia Tourism Board and service providers do not fix this problem throughout Namibia, domestic tourism will diminish. Comments from responses to the questionnaires and interviews informed the third finding; the tourism industry does not cater to Namibians. The tourism industry in Namibia focuses on the international market. This creates a disparity in pricing and quality of services. The majority of guests are European, and only 31% of guests are Namibian. This percentage is at the unsatisfactory level. As stated, Namibians would like to see improvements in the tourism industry. Pricing in the industry remains a problem throughout the country and prevents Namibians from travelling. Poor quality of service and accommodations are also common complaints among tourists. If services are not improved, domestic tourists may not travel in Namibia (featured Image: Stock image)

Nevertheless, this issue has been going on for quite a while now (according to the NTB – since 2006) and to further see the extent of the matter, some outside links have been added at the bottom of this Post. So, if the information provided via the Windhoek Observer Newspaper is true, things should be looking up (?). Or is it? We would love some feedback from our local community if possible…

As far as we know, the following solutions and projects are currently being put forth:

Domestic travellers disembarking from an Air Namibia flight (by Air Namibia)

+ Conduct more research on domestic tourism

An NTB project has only just begun to determine the issues preventing the domestic tourism industry from expanding. Due to resource limitations, a small sample size was used in this study. Although the sample targeted the desired population of middle-class Namibians, the sample was not representative of the Namibian population as a whole. Several recommendations were made based on the collected data in order to improve the current domestic tourism industry; however, more research must be conducted before conclusive results can be determined. The Namibia Tourism Board should continue conducting research on the current state of domestic tourism in Namibia; specifically, the disposable income of Namibians and the amount of money Namibians are willing to spend on accommodations, activities, and transportation. This Project already seems to show some significant effects (click for more Info).

Sample image by Business 2 Community

+ Improve marketing strategies

From observation and interviews, the majority of service providers focus marketing towards international travellers. Therefore, Namibians are unaware of the types of attractions and accommodations available to them at affordable prices. To improve this situation, it is recommended that the Namibia Tourism Board distributes literature to service providers regarding the importance and potential benefits of domestic tourism, as well as successful domestic advertising methods to attract more locals to their establishments. A sample brochure that specifically markets domestic tourist attractions is included in the full report. Combined with segmentation of the Namibian market, marketing and branding techniques can be applied to better target the population of potential domestic travellers.

Midi-Bus Iveco by Namibian Car Rentals

+ Transportation service providers should establish a pass system

Transportation is an important part of any tourism industry but is a major problem throughout Namibia. As mentioned in the findings, the majority of domestic tourists travel by personal car because the bus and train systems are too expensive and often inaccessible due to scheduling issues. To help alleviate this and other problems, it is suggested that transportation service providers establish a pass system where individuals or families can pre-pay for a pass and receive discounts over a period of months. So in other words, by creating more affordable and easily accessible modes of transportation can encourage Namibians to travel more frequently.

Photo by Kamp Kipwe, Namibia

+ Encourage service providers to accommodate domestic tourists

The first approach is to create an understanding of the importance of domestic tourism to Namibia’s tourism market. This should be done through the distribution of literature describing the seasonality of international and domestic tourist travel, as well as disposable income data outlining suggested pricing structures that locals can afford. If the literature does not encourage service providers to reduce pricing, thus increasing the percentage of domestic tourists engaging in leisure travel, an incentive should be introduced.

Namibia Safari Holiday by Responsible Travel

+ Improve the variety and accessibility of attractions throughout Namibia

As previously noted, Namibians would most like to visit natural attractions. The Namibia Tourism Board should begin to identify and market underdeveloped and underutilized nature-based attractions throughout Namibia. Since the significant majority of questionnaire respondents expressed a desire to explore Namibia’s vast landscapes and changing scenery, successful marketing of such attractions would greatly encourage more domestic travel. Again, attractions in Namibia need to be marketed to Namibians. By reducing pricing and advertising low-cost attractions throughout the country, domestic tourists will be encouraged to travel within Namibia.

If the situation with domestic tourism does not change, the market may cease. Currently, service providers are forcing Namibians to spend money outside the country or not at all which brings the economy down. As discussed in the findings, Namibians do travel, would like to continue travelling, and enjoy travel in their home country but are prevented from travelling more due to several limitations such as high pricing, lack of marketing, inaccessible transportation, and poor quality of services. Domestic tourists must be motivated to participate in Namibian tourism which can be accomplished through several recommendations. To reduce pricing, service providers must see the benefit of the domestic tourism market. Wide-Scale distribution of literature and comprehensive data must be made available to service providers throughout Namibia explaining the importance of domestic tourism. Marketing practices must be implemented that focus on the local domestic tourist market in addition to the international domain. Transportation, accommodations, and activities need improvement both in quality of services and pricing. These recommendations are a means to begin changes in the domestic tourism market; however, further research and years of improvements are necessary to develop the industry to a sustainable level. There is a great sense of national pride and love of their country among Namibians. Through making changes to domestic tourism in the upcoming years, the country can evolve and grow into a greater Namibia: a country belonging to the people.

One recommendation which has been addressed by the Namibian Tourism Board

+ Encourage Service Providers to Accommodate Domestic Tourists

One conclusion made based on the analyzed findings was the need for service providers to accommodate domestic tourists. As stated, only 31% of guests at Namibia Tourism Board registered accommodations analyzed are Namibians. This figure needs to be improved to have a sustainable domestic tourism industry. To encourage Namibians to travel, discounts and reduced pricing plans must be made available. To produce the most profit from the tourism industry, service providers currently focus on marketing and pricing techniques to the foreign market. While prices are affordable to foreign travellers, the cost is much higher than Namibians can afford or are willing to pay. The majority of Namibians spend an average of less than N$1,500 on travel, accommodations, food and activities each while on holiday. With the current prices of accommodations and other tourism commodities, Namibian travellers are forced to stay with friends and relatives or at other low-cost accommodations. This situation does not contribute to the economy because less money is being invested in tourism as prices increase and people are less willing to travel. First, the realization of the importance and potential benefits of domestic tourism needs to be established.

Camping at Spitzkoppe, Namibia by Spiegel.de

+ The conclusion:

The recommendation of a widespread campaign to inform service providers of the importance of domestic tourism is the first step towards improving pricing. The distributed literature should explain the importance of domestic tourism to Namibia and include statistics outlining the benefits of increasing the number of domestic tourist clients. Further research should be 66 conducted discovering the average prices of tourism establishments throughout the country, as well as the amount Namibians can spend, and be presented to service providers in a comprehensive pricing guide. Currently, businesses do not know the prices of their competitors. By forcing the release of this information, the market will become more competitive and prices may be driven down in an attempt to bring in the greatest possible number of guests. An incentive can also be introduced to motivate service providers to accommodate Namibians; however, this should only be done if there are insignificant improvements in the domestic tourism market as a result of the distributed literature. One incentive could be a subsidized rate for the levy tax charged by the Namibia Tourism Board in exchange for proof of compliance to a price reduction and marketing campaign.

Photo by Arebush Lodge, Namibia

If companies devise a pricing plan and implement an advertising strategy to market the new price reduction, some levy tax should be waved. To measure the effectiveness of this plan and to ensure the validity of its implementation, businesses will need to provide data showing a certain percentage of increase in domestic clients. This will not only convince the Namibia Tourism Board of the success of the program but results could be organized and distributed to nonparticipating service providers throughout Namibia to further emphasize the importance and benefits of domestic tourism. Paired with successful marketing techniques, the redistributed literature would be helpful to many companies and the domestic tourism industry.

Links and downloads:

• Strategies for developing domestic Tourism in Namibia

• Stepping up local tourism marketing (The Economist – 2015)

• Domestic tourism neglected (New Era – 2017)

• Few Namibians visiting local tourist establishments (NBC – 2017)

46 photo-collection of Namibian Shebeens

For the individual(s) who don’t know the term “shebeen”, let us help you clarify the term before enjoying the photo collection below. Shebeens, mostly located in traditional townships, was started as an alternative to pubs and bars which during apartheid times, black Africans were barred from. Originally shebeens operated illegally, selling home-brewed alcohol and were also meeting places for activists of the struggle against apartheid. As time evolved they also sold commercial beer, spirits, brandy and whiskey. Most of these are operated by elderly people, predominantly women. Shebeen queens and kings share their living space with their customers, meaning there are no designated areas in the house for patrons.

Children raised in these households often go to bed late or can’t study because of the noise generated by patrons, despite the fact that most hardcore shebeens don’t play loud music. A typical shebeen would sell about two to four cases of alcohol on a good day. The customers are normally regulars who are often given booze on credit. These are the operations that would normally fall outside the ambit of the existing legislation within most southern African countries.

The internationally accepted definition of culture by Unesco states that it includes “the whole complex of distinctive, spiritual, material, intellectual and emotional features that characterise a society or a social group. Culture includes arts, letters, modes of life, the fundamental rights of the human being, value systems, traditions and beliefs.” In general, culture is the essence of a given people’s way of life as represented by their multifaceted creations, accomplishments and aspirations

According to www.everyculture.com  the culture of Namibia is characterised by a people who speak Bantu languages like Oshiwambo and Otjiherero as their first language. Others speak Khoisan languages (Nama/Damara and various Bushman languages), while a smaller percentage are native speakers of Indo-European languages like Afrikaans and English.

Like most southern African countries Namibia boasts of a variety of architectural styles in addition to Western buildings. But one can also note the increase in dwellings made of metal sheets or concrete blocks with metal roofs, a style also seen in some urban neighbourhoods.

Should you be educated about this country you will be familiar by now that Namibia was originally inhabited by nomadic hunters, gatherers, and pastoralists and one would note the lack of vegetables in the Namibian diet. So with, important occasions are marked by the slaughter of cattle or goats, and the consumption of meat, home-brewed beer, purchased beverages and other foods. Thus, emphasises the fact that throughout Namibia, drinking is another part of life. No wonder the capital Windhoek is the home of a popular lager named after the city.

A drive to Katutura Township, a populous location 15 km away from the city centre of Windhoek, one will find shebeens located at every corner or in the yard of every other house in Genesisstraat (a street in Namibia’s populous Katutura Township). Sadly, this specific street is at random days unfortunately littered by broken bottles. So if you as a visitor get the change to explore these locations with a rental vehicle, make sure to book vehicle insurance which includes your 4×4 tyres (for just in case).

In Namibia, shebeens operate under the Liquor Act of 1988. Shebeen owners are required to get an annual licence but it was apparent through a community radio current affairs programme that most of them are illegal. But nevertheless, illegal or not, many Shebeen’s all over Namibia will always welcome you and provide a friendly atmosphere in a manner which only Namibian’s can. One thing is certain when it comes to creativity to naming a Shebeen, Africans truly take the lead. Especially when naming the outlet – as seen below. Although many Shebeens look “run-down” from the outside, the inside will often leave you very surprised. Beautiful interior decoration in many Shebeens shows a style which is purely Original within its design and layout. The most beautiful Shebeens are often found very deep in some townships, which sadly are rarely seen by many international visitors. Namibian creativity is actually very well known and admired since the entire country is filled with very creative individuals which should be applauded and showcased to everyone wanting to experience it. Personally, I maintain an opinion that the “name-giving” of every outlet of each Shebeen is to be celebrated in the form of understanding presenting uniqueness and originality which can be only found in southern Africa and especially Namibia. One thing is for certain, Namibian Shebeens have some of the most “catchy” Names which draw the attention of potential customers (disregard of location) hence giving some international Pub’s, Tavern’s or Hang-Out’s a run for its money.

Hard to see on this one: THE DOG IS HOT BAR (spelling missing on Photo Image)
Photo: WAKA WAKA Bar
Photo: UHURU BAR
Photo: TRIPLE N. JOINT SHEBEEN (looks like northern Namibia (?) )
Photo: JUST ANOTHER LIFE BAR
Photo: THE NATION SHEBEEN
Photo: THANKS, TWICE BAR
Photo: SPECIAL OFFER (apparently sponsored by MTC – Mobile Cellphone Provider Enterprise)
Photo: Socialising inside a Shebeen (unknown)
Photo: KONANGHULO GOLDEN PARK
Photo: UUKUMWE HAPPY SHEBEEN AND HOTEL
Photo: BBC ENTERTAINMENT No.2
Photo: NICE TIME SHEBEEN
Photo: Traditional Herero Lady inside a Shebeen, shop or Kuka-Shop (unknown)
Photo: OUR LUCKY BAR (looks like northern Namibia(?) )
Photo: GOOD WILL BAR
Photo: EASY LIFE BAR (not known if sponsored by MTC (?) )
Photo: COOL & COOL
Photo: REALITY BAR $ GROCCERIES (love the spelling layout)

Photo: INTERNATIONAL MARKET & BAR
Photo: PEACE LUCKY BAR
Photo: SIMBIRA SHEBEEN (love this one)
Photo: Unknown Shebeen Interior
Photo: Single Quater Food Outlet in Windhoek (a Windhoek Food Outlet, not a traditional Shebeen as such… click for more details)
Photo: EMBANDI SHEBEEN (most probably in northern Namibia)
Photo: PUT MORE FIRE SHEBEEN (located in Rundu – northern Namibia)
Photo: KASSY BARBERSHOP
Photo: HOT STUFF BAR (all you Designers will love this one – check out the Fonts used)
Photo: MEME’S INN (abrv. “MEME” is Oshiwambo standing for Lady, Old Lady, older Lady, Woman in charge or a form of respectful Term used to introduce yourself humbally towards an African Female)
Photo: FANNY RESTING BAR
Photo: WORLD CUP PUB 2018 RUSSIA
Photo: BACK OF THE MOON (my personal favourite – located in Mondesa, Swakopmund)
Photo: KAYALAMI BAR
Photo: BAFANA-BAFANA SHEBEEN (look up Bafana-Bafana on the Web for more Info – African Soccer)
Photo: HAPPY LIFE SHOP NO.2
Photo: MORNING FIRE BAR
Photo: FREDDY AND SONS
Photo: NEAREST TAILORING CENTRE & SHEBEEN
Photo: VANDAKONGELA. SHEBEEN (would love to find out the location)
Photo: SADDAM HUSSEIN SHOPPING CENTRE (would love to know the location)
Photo: GHETTO BAR
Photo: ACCACIA BAR NO.1 – NDAPANDA HAAR.”SARON
Photo: OSTRICH BAR
Photo: EVERY DAY IS FRIDAY BAR

Photo: Township Tour (P.S. it seem as if this photo has been taken in RSA)

 

     + Word of Note: Photo origin and rights include Vagabond Adventures, Flickr, The Mad Traveller, Gondwana Collection, Carsten ten Brink, Pinterest, Chameleon Safari’s, Peace Corps Namibia Blog, FivePrime, Namibia Tourism Board and a couple unknown sources.

     + Shebeen Links:

• Namibian culture of Shebeens

• The Namibian Newspaper Article

African Termites

To discuss our Namibian Termites and African Termites in general, one first needs to understand that Termites can be roughly grouped into those species that nest within their food (those nasty ones who help you destroy and break-down any wooden structure), usually wood, and those that nest elsewhere and must leave their nest in order to forage for food. Of the latter type, nests may be arboreal or subterranean, centrally located or dispersed into small, connected units. Most termites shun the open air and travel to and from the foraging area by way of subterranean tunnels or covered galleries. Many species also cover the foraged material with sheet galleries before dining (Intro photo: Hypopharynx Pseudergates by Webstagram)

In the central Namib desert, the subterranean termite Psammotermes allocerus Silvestri (Isoptera: Rhinotermitidae) builds its nest structures nearly 30 em deep into the dry sand of the Kuiseb river. Gallery systems protect the insects against unfavourable climatic conditions and reduce body-water loss occurring in all humidities below 98% Rh. Furthermore, the social structure of a termite colony contributes essentially to a reduction of individual water loss in subsaturated atmospheres as well as to a more efficient water uptake. Water vapour uptake from the atmosphere is not possible and free liquid water cannot be used as a water resource because of the strong surface tension of the water droplets. However, with the aid of their hypopharynx pseudergates of Psammotermes allocerus are able to extract water from the capillary system of loamy sand. The role of “water-sacs” in connection with water uptake and storage is still unknown.

 

 

 

 

 

The Photo above: Psammotermes allocerus (by unknown)

Many termites do not build mounds that show above ground, but construct entirely subterranean nests, with tunnels to the surface. The best known of these is the African harvester termite, Hodotermes mossambicus, largely thanks to occasional subterranean encounters during the digging of trenches for construction (Coaton and Sheasby 1975; Hartwig 1963, 1965). Large passages connect these subterranean nest to each other, and smaller ones give the termites access to the surface where they dump excavated soil and forage for grass. Foraged grass is first placed into small, superficial chambers for later transport to the nests and consumption. None of the reports on subterranean gallery systems describes architectural details of the tunnels themselves, or how they are constructed.

Termite mounds comprise a significant part of the landscape in northwestern Namibia. The vegetation type in this area is mopane vegetation, a vegetation type unique to southern Africa. As a first timer visiting Namibia one should notice the fact that, almost all termite mounds coexisted with trees, of which 80% are Mopane trees (Colophospermum mopane). Also, according to multiple biological studies, it was determined that the rate at which trees withered was higher on the termite mounds than outside them, and few saplings, seedlings, or grasses grew on the mounds, indicating that termite mounds could cause trees to wither and suppress the growth of plants. However, even though termite mounds appeared to have a negative impact on vegetation, they could actually have positive effects on the growth of mopane vegetation. Moreover, local people use the soil of termite mounds as construction material, and this utilization may have an effect on vegetation change if they are removing the mounds that are inhospitable for the growth of plants. Consequently, both termite mounds and human activities should be taken into account as factors affecting mopane vegetation as a whole.

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Photo above: Mopane Tree (by Etosha National Park)

As we mentioned above, the savannas of Namibia are dotted with the spectacular mounds of the fungus-growing termites of the genus Macrotermes (Termitidae: Macrotermitinae). These mounds can reach several meters high and represent a colossal engineering project for the termites that build them. These little insects are working and building like there is no tomorrow. According to modern research, the mound is a respiratory device, built to capture wind energy to ventilate the subterranean nest. The need for ventilation is of the highest importance. A typical Macrotermes nest contains roughly a million workers and a substantially larger biomass of the fungi they cultivate. Collectively, these organisms consume oxygen at rates similar to that of large mammals.

 

 

 

 

 

 

By various estimates, a single Macrotermes colony is the metabolic equivalent of a goat or a cow. Macrotermes mounds are also external organs of homeostasis. The composition of the nest atmosphere is tightly regulated. Typically, oxygen concentrations in the nest are 2% lower than the surrounding air, carbon dioxide concentrations are commensurably higher, and nest humidities are very high. These conditions are maintained throughout the year and in the face of considerable variation of metabolic demand from the colony. Such stability can only come about if the termites can match ventilation rate with the colony’s respiration rate.

 

 

 

 

 

 

They do this by making the mound a “smart” structure, which means that it must also be a dynamic structure. The soil is continually eroded from the mound and is replaced by soil carried by termites out to the mound surface. Roughly a cubic meter of soil moves through the mound each year in this way. The mound’s architecture is therefore shaped by the relative rates and patterns of erosion from, and deposition to, the mound. For the mound to be an organ of homeostasis, these patterns of active soil movement must be coupled to the composition of the nest’s atmosphere. For example, excessive ventilation rates would produce patterns of soil transport that reduce the mound’s capture of wind energy. Insufficient ventilation would elicit soil transport patterns that enhance the capture of wind energy.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Photos above: Southern Africa Termite mounds (by unknown)

     + Termites Harvesting for Food
In African tropical countries, most insects are collected from the wild. Such is the case for termites. The tribes of Africa, especially those in Zambia, the Central African Republic, Angola, and the DR of Congo, collect winged sexual forms at the time of nuptial ights of species, such as Macrotermes falciger and Macrotermes subhyalinus, when adults emerge in large numbers from the termitaries subsequent to the maiden rains (Malaisse 2005). Harvesting is mostly seasonal; for instance, in Ghana, Macrotermes bellicosus is available for harvesting only in June and July. In East Cameroon, termites are only harvested in the rainy months of March, April, and May. Termites were collected in Kenya during the short rain season from March to May and the long rainy season from September to December.

 

 

 

 

The photo above: Dried Termites (from Springer link)

The termites are attracted by light from a lantern lamp causing them to fall in large swarms and are collected and put in a clean container. Van Huis (2003) reviewed various methods of termite collection around Africa. The most popular and easy way used in the tropics is to collect them during the evening hours, by placing a basin of water right under the light source. As light is reflected on the water, termites are attracted and trapped on the water surface.

In the DR of Congo, a basket is put upside down over an emergence hole of the mound. In the alternative, a dome-shaped framework of sticks is built up, or elephant grass is covered with banana leaves or a blanket, to cover part of the emergence hole near which a receptacle is placed to collect flying termites. Continuous beating and drumming on the ground around the hill trigger certain termite species to emerge to extract soldiers from the mound. Women and children push grass blades or parts of tree pods or the bark into the shafts of a termite mound or prepare smoke from charcoal from certain trees and blow it into the opening. Soldiers stripped into a container are then collected. Sometimes nests are dug up to collect queens

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Photo above: Fried Termites in West-Africa (by Pinterest)

In Benin, winged termites (Macrotermes falciger) are collected after the rain in a large pan containing water placed under an electric light. In the absence of grid-enabled light, lanterns are placed in large empty pans to trap the winged termites.

The queen is captured after the termitarium has been completely evacuated. The most favourable season for gathering and collecting insects in the wet months of May, June, and July.
There is a considerable trade in termites in some areas, and sun-dried termites are found at the right season in the local markets in many East African towns and villages. They are sometimes transported long distances to markets. The Baganda, who live around the northern shore of Lake Victoria in Uganda, use termites and fried grasshoppers as snacks between the main meals. In many Bantu-speaking parts of the country, boiled and dried termites are on sale in the markets at some seasons of the year. R.J.Phelps (in-depth pdf. Document), recorded that “Certainly dried caterpillars of saturniid moths are sold on the local market, and consumption of termites, locusts and tettigoniids by the clear majority of the population continues despite the presence of western cultures. In fact, many people of a European background eat termites, although not in the quantities that the local people do”

 

     + Other similar past Blog Post’s

 

 

Namibian Vehicle Registration Plates

For many guest’s first time visiting Namibia the array of Vehicle Registration Plates could be somewhat confusing. Herewith our simple insight on how to understand each Vehicle plate. The first letter is always “N” for Namibia. The last one or two letters indicate the town or region the car originates from. In between, numbers are issued sequentially within each region, starting with single-digit numbers, and increasing in length as required. The vast majority of vehicles are registered in the capital, Windhoek, and require six digits; most other regions are currently using 3 or 4 digits. Shown below is a Registration Plate with two letters “N” and “W” which simply stands for “N – Namibia” and “W – Windhoek”. Selected locations carry their own letter, as listed further down below.

 

 

 

Since 2007, personalised number plates are available at an extra fee. Such plates may carry up to seven alphanumerical characters, followed by the Namibian Flag and the letters NA. They also differ in colour and material, the personalised plates are made from acrylic white plastic and have light blue characters. The design change is not only the colour of the Plate but also the removal of the second identificational letter(s) from each Namibian location.

 

 

 

     + The following list shows the location of each individual Vehicle registration which is still present on all yellow Namibian Registration Plates:

AR – Aranos, B – Bethanie, EN – Eenhana, G – Grootfontein, GO – Gobabis, K – Keetmanshoop, KA – Karasburg, KH – Khorixas, KM – Katima Mulilo, KR – Karibib, L – Lüderitz, M – Mariental, MA – Maltahoehe, ND – Ondangwa, OH – Okahandja, OJ – Outjio, OK – Okakarara, OM – Omaruru, ON – Otjinene, OP – Opuwo, OR – Oranjemund, OT – Otjiwarongo, OV – Otavi, R – Rehoboth, RC – Ruacana, RU – Rundu, S – Swakopmund, SH – Oshakati, T – Tsumeb, U – Usakos, UP – Outapi, W – Windhoek, WB – Walvis Bay

Government vehicles use dark green license plates with white imprints. As with ordinary number plates, numbers are issued sequentially within each region, starting with single-digit numbers, and increasing in length as required. The Government vehicle plates are prefixed with the following letters:

• GRN – Government vehicles

 

 

 

• NCS – Namibian Correctional Services

• NDF – Namibia Defence Force

 

 

 

• POL – Police

 

 

 

     + Other past and present Vehicle Plates:

• UNTAG (The United Nations Transition Assistance Group). Generally, a Registration Plate on military Vehicles from UNTAG when stationed in Namibia from 16 February 1989 till March 1990.

 

 

 

• Diplomat

 

 

 

• Pre-Independence Vehicle Registrations (Prior to independence in 1989 the then South West Africa’s number plates started with an “S” and followed the South African layout. e.g. Windhoek was: SW 123-456, Swakopmund SS 2121, etc)

 

 

 

     + Below an image collection from Worldlicenceplates.com:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Black Friday Chaos Photo and Video collection

Not everyone knows the fact that the renowned “Black Friday” is an informal name for the day after Thanksgiving Day in the United States. It is a public holiday in more than 20 states inside the USA and is considered the start of the US Christmas shopping season. Black Friday is one of the busiest shopping days not just in the USA but in many countries all over the world, even in Namibia. As the Collins English Dictionary puts it: “The day after the US Thanksgiving Day in late November, regarded as the start of the Christmas shopping season“. There are two popular theories as to why the day after the American Thanksgiving Day is called Black Friday. The first theory is that the wheels of vehicles in heavy traffic on the day after Thanksgiving Day left many black markings on most American roads, leading to the term “Black Friday”. The second theory is that the term Black Friday comes from an old way of recording business accounts. Losses were recorded in red ink and profits in black ink. Many businesses, particularly small businesses, started making profits before Christmas. Many hoped to start showing a profit, marked in black ink, on the day after Thanksgiving Day. Now since Namibia doesn’t celebrate the American public Holiday “Thanks Giving” somehow almost 90% of all Namibian Retailers adopted the Black Friday idea into their Sales strategy, with great effect (see video clips below).

Over the years, one occasionally gets to see video clips, photos or even first-hand accounts on the absolute mayhem and chaos with which many Shopping and Retail Outlets need to be prepared for… disregard of global location. Below is a small insight with media showing the insanity happening throughout Namibia specifically from 2018/11/23 – Namibia’s Black Friday.

The next three photos below show the masses cue’ing up before opening time at one of the biggest South African retail-franchises here in Namibia – Game.

 

 

 

 

 

 

The photo above: Game Shopping Mall in Hochlandpark, Windhoek – Black Friday in Namibia 2018 approx. 23h30 (Photographer unknown). On the Black Friday of 2018, the doors opened at 24h00 to make the specials available to the public, hence the parking bay gathering.

 

 

 

 

 

 

The photo above: Game Shopping Mall in Grove Mall, Windhoek – Black Friday in Namibia 2018 approx. 07h45 (Photographer unknown)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The photo above: Game Shopping Mall in Grove Mall, Windhoek – Black Friday in Namibia 2018 approx. 07h45 (Photographer unknown)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Image above: The first-page from the pamphlet on Black Friday specials on offer from the Game Retailer (click for more details). Please Note: The Information provided on this Link could change without prior notice hence it seems to be a temporary online publication(!).

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Above a Social Media Snapshot warning – shared via Namibia’s Informante Newspaper.

     + Videos (from unknown Individual’s):

The video above: Game Retail outlet at the Grove Mall in Windhoek, Namibia 2018/11/23 (from: currently unknown)

The second video above: Game Retail outlet in Windhoek, Namibia 2018/11/23 (from: currently unknown)

The third video above: Game Retail outlet in Windhoek, Namibia 2018/11/23 (from: currently unknown)

Above a News Broadcast from the Namibian Broadcasting Corporation reporting on Black Friday 2018

Above (International): A nice compilation on how different countries react towards Black Friday (Israel, USA, UAE, Canada, Finnland, Russia and RSA)

We would like to Note that the Game Retail outlet is not in any way to be seen as a negative perspective due to “Black Friday” but rather in how well the folks at Game handle their Marketing to achieve brilliant success. The masses seen inside each clip prove a point of excellent forms of advertisement. Respect! Furthermore, it still boggles our mind how the back-office of Game handled the overall sum of sales once closing. Must have been quite a mountain to climb (symbolically)…

     + The extra clip’s with extreme mayhem and chaos from 2017:

Below are three clips showing the absolute chaos from the Foschini Fashion Retail Outlet having their first Black Friday in 2017 at their Windhoek Outlet (Please Note: low cellphone quality recording).

Authors Note: After seeing this, imagine how mankind will behave in a scenario where food runs out(?)…. just something to think about!

      + Links:

• Check out this photo and video collection from various Game Outlets in South Africa

• Read our past Blog Post on 14 outstanding Namibian Products

Photo Collection of Namibia pre-21’st century

A small photo collection of 30 black and white photos, taken by various unknown photographers in the days of colonialism and other dark days. We don’t want to provide inaccurate information, therefore, we exempt ourselves from explaining every photo itself. All we can say that the locations on these photos include Swakopmund Mole, Kristuskirche, Reiterdenkmal, Avis Damm in Windhoek, Pupkewitz General Dealer (one of the oldest retailers in Namibia), Hotel Kaiserkrone, Kaiserliches Zollamt, Swakopmund Leuchtturm, Tintenpalast, a vehicle used for an Ostrich hunt, diverse traditional and non-traditional Garments worn by proud Namibian’s and other selected and diverse images. Mainly, most of the images include a beautiful showcase of some of the Architecture still present throughout Independence Avenue in Windhoek and the general location of and around the Kristuskirche. One character trait which helps predict the age of some of these photos is the layout and shape of bricks shown inside a few photos and also the vehicles used at the time. Perhaps some of you reading this will also notice the “Jugendstil Architecture” and the old-school font’s used on all the signage(?). Unfortunately, much knowledge on when, where and by whom got lost over the time. Many other photos/replicas can be found at Windhoek’s UNIC Library, UNAM Library ( recommended), Peter’s Antiques in Swakopmund and other selected locations.

     + Other similar cool Info available:

• Download our 92-page .pdf brochure for further details on Windhoek Libraries (3,7Mb)

• Kolmanskuppe – German colonial coastal Ghost Town