Tag Archives: Tourism and Travel

South Africa is open for tourism and business

 

The emphatic message coming from the Department of Tourism during the recent Meetings Africa gathering is that South Africa is open for business..

Meeting Africa is recognised as Africa’s leading business and tourism trade show, and appeals to influential buyers from around the globe.

It’s a flagship marketing effort of South African Tourism (SAT), and focuses primarily on the so-called MICE (meetings, incentives, conference, and exhibitions) industry, with products and solutions that catch the attention of local and international buyers alike.

Meetings Africa 2012 at the same time saw the roll-out of the National Convention Bureau (NCB) which is intending to play a vital role in harnessing national tourism initiatives.

“The NCB will prove to add significant value to the country’s business tourism industry,” stated tourism minister Marthinus van Schalkwyk, “and will strengthen and support efforts already being made to drive expansion in business tourist arrivals to make South Africa a truly global force.”

Van Schalkwyk remarked that through the prosperous hosting of major events including the 2010 Fifa World Cup, the recent COP17 climate change conference, along with other sporting, business and tourism events, South Africa has built its credentials as a accredited global host.

He went on to state that South Africa carries with it an advantage in that the country has world-class business and conference facilities, but in addition exceptional leisure tourism attractions along with hospitable and friendly people.

 

Tourism Minister Marthinus van Schalkwyk

The NCB was started in November 2011 and is led by executive director Amanda Kotze-Nhlapho, who joined up with SAT following a successful tenure as head of convention bureau and events at Cape Town Routes Unlimited.

“We are convinced that the industry is in a position to contribute to the economy,” she explained.

The NCB are able to offer services which include help and support with the planning of conventions, all facets of the bidding process, and on-site event services.

Welcome to South Africa

A presentation by Mabeka Makola, SAT’s brand experience manager, provided specifics about the organisation’s SAT’s Welcome Campaign, geared towards inspiring all South Africans to welcome visitors warmly as a result inspire them to return.

He stated that the perception of the country is a vital element not merely in bringing visitors back, but also in inspiring them to pass on the word about South Africa back home.

“It’s about every single person working together to highlight the small things that will likely have a much better influence on visitor perception in the long run.”

The initiative is going into its second phase of execution, which brings the consumer on board. Phase one was concerned with talks with the trade.

“We have to partner with small businesses to make certain that this campaign actually reaches the full potential, simply because its success depends on partnerships,” said Makola.

Significance of the BRICS partnership to South Africa
A Meetings Africa panel discussion highlighted the role South Africa’s BRICS membership has played in fuelling trade and investment in the country.

South Africa officially joined the bloc of emerging economic powers in April 2011.

Soni, Brand South Africa chairperson, told the guests the fact that the move to join BRICS has allowed South Africa to connect with the big growth economies in the world, and additionally tap into their profitable markets.

“President Jacob Zuma has shared that since we joined the BRICS family, our exports grew four-fold into those countries and our imports into the same countries doubled,” said Soni. “It therefore makes business sense to play with the largest growing economies in the world.”

She went ahead and added that to make the most of these business opportunities, long-term strategies were needed, and these were in place.

 

Demidova, general director at Expert Avis Marketing, pointed out that there is remarkable interest in South Africa from the Russian side. “Russians have an interest in what is happening in this country, and are checking out the destination as a possible event alternative.”

She hinted at the likelihood of direct flights between South Africa and Russia in the foreseeable future, likening the idea to the recent non-stop flight to China introduced by South African Airways.

South Africa and China have established bilateral agreements in numerous areas, including transport, education, housing, infrastructure, and water resource management.

The introduction of non-stop flights between South Africa and Russia promises to facilitate business and leisure travel in between the two countries, stated Demidova.

She mentioned that South Africa will need to continue to keep focus on issues of accessibility to the country, such as visa requirements, flight length and destination promotion. She disclosed statistics from Russia which reveal that since Latin America dropped visa requirements, travel from Russia to that region improved significantly.

Ji, Civic Group founder from China, shared Demidova’s sentiment, and suggested that the Chinese people would like to know much more about South Africa and how to do business with the country.

“Our emphasis is on cooperation and seeking for a win-win situation,” she said. “We are extremely open to forming new partnerships and are focusing on the long term interest.”

Devarajan, president of India’s largest travel group Kuoni India, mentioned that there are numerous factors to take into consideration when organizing a MICE tour.

“The planner wants a focus on logistics, access and customising an itinerary to suit the traveller, while the tourist wants to see new things, experience new sites and enjoy nightlife and shopping. Corporate visitors want more bang for their buck and are concerned about safety” he explained.

When it comes to Indian visitors to South Africa, Devarajan mentioned that their numbers would increase if hotels made available more Indian products, such as Indian television channels and cuisine.

The harsh truth for business tourism, said Soni, is the fact that South Africans will need to speak with one voice.

“Business, government, society and the media really have to communicate accurate messages, and we all need to be ambassadors for our country.”

Source: mediaclubsouthafrica.com

Top Four Careers in Hospitality

Hospitality Career does not necessarily only have to do with a single job. It happens to be for the most part an industry where you can consider an extensive number of specialties. The simple truth is that finding out about these various fields may very well be enjoyable. Having said that, an individual is incapable of performing everything within this industry, which explains why possessing a specialization is essential.

Considering all the alternatives in this particular career, you will discover the ones that top the list. In order to assist you, listed here are the most notable four careers in hospitality that you may possibly want to consider venturing into.

Hotel Staff

It is unquestionable that hotels are rampant in the present day. You are able to see high rise hotels being built virtually anywhere so long as there exists a site to see or destination to visit. This is true not merely for the South Africa, but various other countries as well. Regardless of whether it is a five-star hotel or perhaps a not so glamorous hotel, a hotel is a hotel and one thing’s for sure: they require individuals to be employed by them.

Job opportunities in this particular type of profession may possibly also fluctuate and they are generally plentiful at the same time. A person may be the front desk person who assigns rooms for guests or perhaps you could potentially end up being the lifeguard at the pool area who watches over the kid’s pool; the reality is that you will discover an enormous variety of hotel staff positions that one could give consideration to. Apart from the sheer numbers of positions, the volume of establishments you possibly can be employed by is likewise substantial. You will find small bed and breakfasts in addition to 5-star accommodations.

Precisely how high your compensation could possibly be is based on your job title. This factor would most likely in addition decide how you will probably be paid; whether by hour or on a yearly basis.

 

 

Event And Meeting Planner

This position consists of responsibilities of being in control of the features pertaining to vital business meetings or wedding receptions taking place in hotels. You essentially will be required to act out as an event planner or organizer to ensure that your client would have a smooth program flow for their event. At the same time, it is an important part of your responsibility to manage the accommodations and amenities of a facility on site. Consequently, you should have some knowledge regarding contract negotiations.

For this particular form of specialization, an individual would be required to possess a bachelor’s degree within a particular area, in addition to 2-4 years of experience in the field is required.

 

 

Executive Chef

This specific career would in most cases involve managing the flow and direction of a kitchen. You may very well be in charge of arranging menus and tables in hotels, cruise ships, along with other locations that tourists go to. In addition, you monitor inventory and attempt to reduce expenses. You select which supplies and food products are essential to purchase. After some time, you can expect to create and customize the menus making sure that there is an boost in profits and reduce financial losses. You happen to be at the same time the person who is actually responsible for overseeing the overall satisfaction of your customers.

An extensive knowledge of local food sanitation regulations and rules, in addition to federal state laws are crucial. In most cases, you need to have a bachelor’s degree in a field of specialty and a minimum of 7 years of experience.

 

 

Travel Coordinator

A travel coordinator stands out as the individual who takes control whenever companies require coordination regarding their travel plans. The most common responsibilities you could possibly encounter may very well be scheduling flights and hotel stays, in addition to assisting travelers to obtain their passports, visas, and various other required travel documents.

 

 

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Tourism linked to job creation

 

Tourism Minister Marthinus van Schalkwyk has encouraged the country’s youth to take advantage of the job creation potential presented by tourism and cultural products.

Talking at World Tourism Day celebrations organised at the Basotho Cultural Village just outside Qwaqwa in the Free State, Van Schalkwyk said that the government was willing to support the youth by equipping all of them with business skills geared towards the tourism industry.

Free State MEC for Economic Development, Tourism and Environmental Affairs Mxolisi Dukwana stated that the provincial government was doing everything in its power to boost culture and tourism.

Echoing precisely the same feelings as the minister, he explained that young adults are advised to become involved in tourism. He said that it is a valid reason for the youth to promote and preserve their cultures, as they are a crucial attraction factor for tourists to South Africa.

 

 

“Our culture is what defines us as a nation and as a country.”

World Tourism Day is celebrated annually on 27 September. Its purpose is to create awareness among the international community of the incredible importance of tourism along with its social, cultural, political and economic value.

The 2011 theme, Tourism: Linking Cultures, is a celebration of tourism’s role in linking together the cultures all over the world by way of travel.

The event attempts to address global challenges outlined in the UN Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and to emphasize the contribution the tourism sector can make in reaching these goals.

 

 

World Tourism Day 2011 will also highlight the importance of preserving and promoting the cultures of the world in all their forms.

Free State resident Madibakeso Tshabalala, who arrived at the event clad in Basotho traditional attire, said she was proud of her culture and wanted young people to follow in her footsteps. “Our kids must know about our culture and be proud of it.”

Van Schalkwyk said in 2010, 29.7 million domestic trips were taken, compared with 30.3 million taken in 2009.

He said the first quarter of 2011 showed a positive growth of 7.5% in domestic trips. South Africa prides itself on its heritage sites, which appeals to a large number of foreign tourists.

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Source: BuaNews

Tourism to generate more than 10 000 work opportunities

Tourism Minister Marthinus van Schalkwyk

The National Department of Tourism is going to bring about 10 270 full time work opportunities in the current financial year, along with roughly 530 small rural enterprises will most likely at the same time be supported, according to Tourism Minister Marthinus van Schalkwyk.

Presenting his department’s Budget Vote, van Schalkwyk said the work opportunities will likely be created via the Social Responsibility Implementation (SRI) programme and the Tourism Enterprise Partnership (TEP).

The department in addition planned to invest R253 million in 2011 financial year to finance tourism projects which had been aligned to the Expanded Public Works Programme.

“We believe that this will likely make it easier for the transfer of wealth to poor and rural communities by amongst others guaranteeing ownership of assets as well as the facilitation of skills development,” he explained.

Strategies were in addition going ahead to boost the volume of foreign tourist arrivals to South Africa from 7 million in 2009 to 15 million by 2020, not to mention tourism’s overall contribution towards the economy from R189 billion in 2009 to R499 billion by 2020.

The quantity of domestic tourists may possibly also increase from 14.6 million in 2009 to 18 million by 2020 and in addition create 225 000 new jobs by 2020.

Van Schalkwyk explained that government bodies would undoubtedly at the same time be utilizing the department’s budget to promote new growth by being able to access markets unlocked by the World Cup.

“In this perspective, we envisage maximising the importance of our involvement in numerous international and regional tourism platforms. We will look for cooperation together with other African partners to be able to make a difference to the economic prosperity of our continent as a result of tourism.”

The department is going to further develop a Tourism International Relations Strategy to tactically guide our events at multi-lateral level, which includes South Africa’s involvement in the BRICS formation.

The travel and leisure sector, subsequently, also embraces the projected launch by South African Airways of a non-stop service to New York in May 2011 as well as a direct service to China towards the end of 2011, in addition to Air France’s scheduled launch of a completely new thrice weekly non-stop service from Paris to Cape Town in November 2011, stated the minister.

With regards to responsible and low carbon tourism, van Schalkwyk explained he has been worried about the deficiency of harmonisation of accreditation certification and labelling within the tourism industry.

There was clearly a number of “very admirable” private sector and civil society driven initiatives which have produced systems of integrity, but “most of these are typically in silos and really should find broader application.”

“This regulatory vacuum with regards to the tourism sector regrettably produces the space for abuse and green-washing. Furthermore, it is not going to effectively reward those who work in the industry that do engage in leadership functions simply by investing in low carbon, ethical, clean and green tourism transformation,” said van Schalkwyk.

The department is going to in the near future publish the National Minimum Standard for Responsible Tourism in the current financial year. The minister explained these kinds of benchmarks will deal with numerous proportions of green and responsible tourism, which includes biodiversity conservation, energy consumption and water use.

Source: BuaNews

South Africa bold plans for tourism

The Tourism Department hopes to boost South Africa’s domestic tourism statistics from the most recent estimated seven million to upwards of 17 million by 2020.

This approach has come about as government’s recent economic growth path labeled tourism as being among the list of primary markets that can assist the state realize its economic goals and objectives for the country.

The department recently showcased its overhauled 2011 leg of the widely recognized Sho’t Left advertising and marketing campaign, through which it intends to commit in excess of R30 million in a combination of road trips and advertising campaigns geared towards rallying local communities behind the brand South Africa.

Tourism Minister Marthinus van Schalkwyk, who had been giving a presentation during one of the road trips in Limpopo, proclaimed that domestic tourism continued to be the backbone of his department’s intentions to contribute in excess of R500 billion to the GDP 2020.

Domestic tourism is considered the most significant contributor to South Africa’s tourism volume and is also responsible for 79 percent of all tourists in the country.

The Sho’t Left advertising and marketing campaign is an element of government’s total tourism strategy and the concept will be to showcase the culture of tourism among South Africans, along with the emphasis focused towards the small and the least frequented regions.

“For all of us, investing in domestic tourism continues to be our fundamental goal. Domestic tourism is without a doubt our backbone and the government has finally begun to understand and appreciate the function and importance of this sector plus it currently forms part of the new growth path,” van Schalkwyk said.

He in addition reported a positive increase in domestic figures for 2010, with noticeable rises when it comes to duration of trips undertaken along with the money spent on holidays when compared to the previous year.

“For the very first time in a great many years, we have observed growth within critical areas which include frequency, overall spend along with the length of stay,” stated the minister.

Well over 13.5 million individuals undertook a domestic trip during the last year, with an average of 2.2 trips per traveler. This has been a small improvement when compared to the 2.1 annual trips per traveler undertaken in 2009.

Despite the fact that the department registered less domestic travels in 2010, the boosts in spending along with the frequency of traveling indicated that South Africans were definitely beginning to “grasp” the culture of travel.

Authorities suggested despite the fact that total annual spend on domestic tourism was in fact down from R22.4 billion recorded in 2009 to R21.1 billion, they were enthusiastic as a result of the surge in spending to 31 percent last year when compared to 22 percent in 2009.

This has been to some extent linked to the excitement as a result of the Soccer World Cup, as individuals were very likely to have been motivated to fork out a whole lot more on a number of luxuries and entertainment.

The excellent news for the holiday accommodation industry is the fact that total annual nights spending on establishments for domestic travel escalated to well over 130 million in 2010 compared with 124 million the previous year.

Having said that the minister maintained that despite the fact that the trend in domestic tourism figures had continued to be in the upward direction over the year, the difficult task would be to turn this into a “tangible” opportunity for job creation and economic growth.

In accordance with the government’s new growth path and emphasis on job creation, South Africa Tourism intends to improve upon the current R199 billion contributed by the sector towards the GDP to approximately R500 billion by 2020.

“All of us need to make certain that it leads to job creation at the same time encouraging us to accomplish economic growth simultaneously,” he added.

SA Tourism CEO Thandiwe January-Mclean at the same time pointed out that investing in domestic tourism will certainly form part of the organisation’s future growth plan, adding the fact that the strategy was to showcase all nine provinces, even those located a long way away from the coastline as well as other popular tourist sites.

“We will need to make it possible for South Africans to travel their country and become tourists within their own country, and for us to accomplish this we will need to inform them that something beautiful exists in all provinces,” she said.

 

Source: BuaNews, mediaclubsouthafrica.com, ushouldvisit.com,