Tourism stakeholders probe ‘aggressive and coordinated’ recovery plan post-pandemic
In 2019, travel and tourism contributed 6.9% (R363.2 billion) to the GDP.
Tourism is one of the sectors that have been hardest hit by the global pandemic, with travel bans to curb the spread of the virus affecting international tourism while other restrictions made it hard even for domestic tourism to thrive.
SA Tourism further told the committee that according to the World Travel and Tourism Council’s 2021 Economic Impact Report, international visitors’ spend dropped from R134.6 billion in 2019 to only R45.7 billion in 2020, while domestic spend went down to R91.5 billion in 2020 from R160 billion in 2019.
However, SA Tourism is now working on a plan to revive the sector not only domestically but also to lure back international travellers back into the country.
This week, in Cape Town, the national tourism agency and different stakeholders in the sector met to discuss strategies of a recovery plan under the Global Advocacy Programme, which was launched by the department of tourism, SA Tourism and the Tourism Business Council of South Africa (TBCSA).
One of the things the sector wants to do is lure back the more than 20 million international visitor numbers of pre-Covid times.
Speaking during the gathering, acting SA Tourism CEO Themba Khumalo defined the Global Advocacy Programme as a specific initiative that involves getting databases, identifying potential tourists and luring them back into the country.
SA Tourism interim board chairperson Mojanku Gumbi said marketing the country was not the responsibility agency alone.
“I know that many people will say ‘you get a budget from government, [it’s] our tax money’ but there is no way that SA Tourism is going to be the only body that markets tourism. Each and every one of us must market our country. And we market it to whom? We market it to our families and friends,” Gumbi said.
She said, for example, when friends and family visit, they should be encouraged to stay at local guest houses or for family functions to be hosted at a hotel instead of gathering at home.
Courtesy of NEWS24 – read full article here.