Destination South Africa Is Doing Well

Cape Times (South Africa), September 15, 2011 | Go to article overview

Destination South Africa Is Doing Well


The world has experienced fundamental changes over the past few months, thereby altering our tourism marketing and operating environment considerably.

If one takes a cursory glance at some of these global developments such as the social media-led revolutions in north Africa and the Middle East, catastrophic natural disasters in Japan, the enduring American and European debt crises, right-wing terror in the land of the Nobel Peace Prize, riots in the streets of London and the turbulence in our own society, tourism is clearly in for a radical reconfiguration.

So, when we talk about a "crisis" in Western Cape tourism, it must be located within a proper context. Although one cannot deny that our industry is currently under severe strain, the myriad emotional arguments and blaming games to explain both the causes and solutions to this "crisis" could be counter-productive and must be a major cause of concern.

This has been a long, bleak winter. Accommodation occupancy concerns, hotel closures and difficult trading conditions in the tourism industry are well documented. It is important, however, to pause and think about the wider context of the problem, and the realities of both the market and destination offerings.

Firstly, we must, of course, remember we are just coming out of our winter months and current arrivals are similar to those of winter 2008. Naturally, winter performance this year cannot be compared to last year when we hosted the World Cup.

The tourism industry is subject to the vagaries of seasonality, and it is completely normal for occupancy to dip during the colder months - as it did this year.

Secondly, there is a marked over-supply of tourism (and other) infrastructure. A survey by PricewaterhouseCoopers found that South Africa gained about 10 000 more hotel rooms between 2007 and 2010. That is 21 percent more.

Thirdly, we must not forget that going on holiday is a luxury. The world continues to hurt from the 2008/2009 recession and consumers are concentrating on getting back on their financial feet. This means keeping up with essential expenses and sacrificing luxury buys.

And, speaking of costs, airfare (pushed up by rising fuel costs) to South Africa is a massive factor. Airport taxes and unfavourable exchange rates push the costs up further. We see this in modest arrivals growth from the traditional markets, where travellers are now choosing short-haul holidays instead of trips to long-haul destinations.

Long-haul airfare costs - compounded by lingering recession damage - do not only affect us, but the whole world.

Last but not least, it's also become far more expensive to run a tourism business today. The costs, in fact, of operating a business have risen by an estimated 22 percent in the last three years.

Rising costs are driven by the cost of electricity, water, municipal levies, labour, and food prices. Businesses, understandably, struggle to remain viable when demand for their services wanes.

Despite the above, destination South Africa is doing well. The most recent 2011 first quarter statistics released by Statistics South Africa show a 7.5 percent year-on-year increase in all arrivals, with overseas arrivals growing by 9.7 percent, a trend roughly followed by the Western Cape.

Seven airlines are already (or will be) operating new flights into Cape Town. These equate to an additional 20 flights a week into South Africa, giving evidence of the strong confidence the international sector still has in our destination.

Encouragingly, India, China, Brazil, Russia and African markets have emerged as tourism markets with great potential for South Africa. In April, year-on-year arrivals from India were up more than 50 percent. Chinese arrivals had grown 25.6 percent and arrivals from Brazil had grown by more than 38 percent. Arrivals from the DRC grew by more than 21 percent and arrivals from the UAE had grown by almost 31 percent. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Destination South Africa Is Doing Well
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.