Steep prices kill carnival mood

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Most locals attending the ongoing Victoria Falls Carnival are having a torrid time in the resort town as the bond notes as well as RTGS payments are proving very unpopular.

Those who are used to buying tickets to the event at the last hour learnt the hard way on Saturday – the first day of the event as organisers were no longer accepting the local currency or any other form of payment other than US dollar. A three-day ticket was pegged at US$90.

As if that was not enough, the carnivalistas who had not carried US dollars with them were in for another rude awakening at the event’s bush party as the pricing was not friendly for the ordinary Zimbabwean.

A new system of credits was introduced this year for the buying of drinks and food with 100Bond being equivalent to 400 credits and 100USD equivalent to 1 400 credits.

Burgers were pegged at about ($20 Bond/10USD) each with prices of beverages also on the steep side.

Other than the carnival, the rest of the town also increased its prices, likely due to the ongoing price madness in the country.

A plate of isitshwala and beef that usually costs between $3 and $5 at basic outlets in the town is now costing between $15 and $20.

Upmarket restaurants such as Three Monkeys whose prices at one point ranged between $15 and $30 now have most of their dishes ranging between $25 and $40.

But with all this madness, outlets such as Invuvu bar and restaurant have somehow remained sane as their meals are pegged at $4,50.

This pricing has made this spot, whose location in the CBD is ideal, the most popular joint among visiting locals.

To add onto their fair pricing, their meals (mainly isitshwala/rice served with chicken, beef, inhloko and beef stew) which have reasonable portions and are served very hot, are well prepared.

Other than Invuvu, KFC which at one point was the most expensive fast food outlet, this time is among the most affordable as their Streetwise 2 is being sold for $9, which is almost half the price of isitshwala at most joints.

Still trying to beat this price madness, most locals yesterday resorted to buying their own alcohol at outlets such as OK and TM.

However, most of these outlets did not have ice and the few places like fuel stations which had, charged people US$5 per pack or $15.

Today, the carnival will be getting into full gear with a New Year’s Eve party headlined by Prince Kaybee taking place at the Victoria Falls Farm School.–

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