South African Airways, the leading carrier on the African continent, has thrown its weight behind tourism authorities, destination marketing organisations and travel and tourism trade show hosts in an effort to stimulate the growth of tourism to and the country.
Through its participation at the World Travel Market® Africa (WTM® Africa), a fast growing inbound and outbound travel and tourism show, which takes place from 6 until 8 April at the Cape Town International Convention Centre (CTICC), SAA supports the Department of Tourism’s objective to further stimulate Business and Leisure tourism to South Africa.
“We have seen an upsurge in tourists interested in travelling to South Africa due to a combination of factors such as the exchange rate advantages to travellers from countries such as Germany and the United Kingdom. South Africa is also, besides the value for money on offer, a destination which offers a host of natural and historic attractions. Stimulating tourism has the added effect that it helps with job creation,” says Tlali Tlali, SAA Spokesperson.
In South Africa, SAA will be assisting in bringing a vast selection of visitors, hosted buyers and media from around the world to Thebe Reed Exhibitions’ WTM® Africa exhibition, where the airline will also be exhibiting and promoting its product to the International Trade.
In 2015 WTM® Africa welcomed 4,127 industry professionals, buyers, media and travel trade professionals from across the continent and worldwide and is set to see a further increase this year.
“SAA offices in all the countries where we operate, in Africa and globally, are intensely involved in promoting tourism to South Africa through a variety of activities and by participating in tourism trade exhibitions both in South Africa and in other parts of the world.
Recently, a group of media and well known personalities from West Africa (Nigeria, Ghana) visited South Africa to familiarise themselves with the country to highlight leisure experiences that appeal to West African consumers. This coincided with the launch of SAA’s flights to Abuja, Nigeria,” he added.
From East Africa, in partnership with SA Tourism, SAA representatives and travel agents participated in an educational trip to South Africa to expose them to the ever developing dynamic destination, product South Africa.
International highlights were the World Travel Market in London which is different to the SA WTM with a focus on growing tourism to South Africa from the United Kingdom and indeed from the rest of Europe. This was supported by a roadshow and press events across the UK, blogger trips to South Africa, and a giant outdoor consumer event in London to showcase the incredible diversity and value the country has to offer.
SAA North America launched the Go See Southern Africa campaign to create awareness of the great destinations and great value that is offered throughout Southern Africa for tourists from North America. This region also hosts the annual Africa Showcase (in its eighth year) for travel agents and tour operators throughout the U.S. and Canada, where about 30 suppliers from destination tourism organisations, hotels, safari lodges and tourism services throughout Africa promote tourism to Africa.
By: Sade Williams