The Uganda Wildlife Authority, the body responsible for managing and monitoring protected areas in Uganda is in contention to announce the slight increase in the prices of gorilla permits. The gorilla permits rates will be hiked from USD 600 to USD 700 Dollars effectively on 1st of July 2020.
The gorilla permit is a card issued by The Uganda Wildlife Authority legally allowing a person to track/trek the mountain gorillas in their natural habitats.
The reason by behind the increase in the gorilla permit rate is because of the massive demand of gorilla permits in the past two years. There has been an overflow of tourists in quest for gorilla permits yet the supply was marginal.
The mountains gorillas are one of the most sought after wildlife species by eco tourists and are only found in three countries in the world (Uganda, Dr. Congo and Rwanda). Uganda provides a safe gorilla tracking experience at cheaper cost compared to Rwanda where a gorilla permit goes for 1500$. Uganda is also a home to almost a half of the total population of mountain gorillas in the world. The mountain gorillas in Uganda are found in the famous Bwindi Impenetrable National Park and Mgahinga National Park all located in the southwest of the country about 9 hours away from Kampala the capital
Meeting the mountain gorillas in the wild is a lifetime experience; the mountain gorillas are one of the closest cousins of mankind in the animal kingdom with 98% DNA similarity. These amazing primates are very intelligent animals that have very intuitive social traits and also the ability to use tools like stones and tree branches for their day to day chores (feeding and building shelter). The tourists are always left buzzing when they observe the aforementioned highlights. Gorilla trekking is rewarding a very rewarding experience. Therefore a slight increase in the rates of gorilla permits is a clever move where both the Uganda conservation and preservation team and the tourists will all win.
Nonetheless, it is not only the gorilla permit rates that have been increased but also other tourist activities done in the national parks of Uganda. In the new issue of Uganda Wildlife Authority tariff plan of July 2020, you will see changes in fees of park entrances and park activities.
It should be noted that Uganda is an eco-tourism destination; the pressure on the fragile environment by the visiting tourists has been massive hence leading to its deterioration in quality. The increase in the tariffs is an eco-tourism measure to try minimizing the pressure on the environment and also getting more funds for preservation and conservation.