Time to don new cape in S Africa

South African Tourism aims to bring to the forefront all its unexplored natural bounties and showcase more than just Cape Town, Johannesburg and Durban, reveals Sisa Ntshona, CEO, South African Tourism in an interview with TRAVTALK.

KARISHMA KHANNA FROM DURBAN

Q) Please share your inbound traffic numbers in terms of percentage growth

Currently, we are experiencing record numbers that have never been experienced before. We saw about 10 and a half million international arrivals in the year 2016. We are poised for further growth in 2017. However, it’s important to note that the world has a travelling population of over a billion. So we still get less than one per cent of the market share. South Africa has set its target of increasing its market share of the international arrivals, and this has led us to a simple strategy that we have to attract an additional 5 million international arrivals to our country in the next 5 years. This is driving our focus and resources and our efforts are aligned to that.

Q) Any special offerings/ strategies especially targeting Indian tourists? Any in the pipeline?

The better we know our target audience, the better we are able to market to them our tourism products. It’s also important to know that you cannot look at the Indian market as one homogenous market. It’s got different flavours and different preferences and we want to make sure that we cater to each one proficiently.

Q) How’s your ‘Wow in every moment’ campaign been doing?

WOW! It’s doing great! It was a very simple campaign. We look around for big words, but “wow”, which is the simplest one, is the perfect word to describe the feeling that surfaces when people get to experience and actually interact with South Africa. The “Wow campaign” was all about what’s that natural emotion coming through as people discover our country and that was very successful. Kind of really simple but understandable.

Q) What are the highlight destinations in South Africa that Indians can explore?

South Africa has nine provinces and believe me, we have not brought all of them to the fore. We have been focusing primarily on three provinces: Durban, Cape Town and Johannesburg. But now we want to bring the others to focus as well. You can go from Northern Cape, which is almost like a dessert and is known for star gazing in the night sky, to Limpopo, where the safaris are. We want to have a melting pot as you put it — even if you come to South Africa for the 3rd or 4th time, you will not be repeating what you did before. There will be new experiences unravelling all the time and we are going to bring all of them through quite loudly going forward.

Q) Anything else you would like to add?

Indian market is a very important market for us. We are investing a lot of resources and time into it, and we are working with all of our partners, inside as well as outside of the Government, to make sure that we forge hassle-free connectivity between the two nations.

“We have been focusing primarily on three provinces: Durban, Cape Town and Johannesburg. But now we want to bring the others to focus as well. You can from Northern Cape, which is almost like a dessert and is known for star gazing in the night sky, to Limpopo,”- Sisa Ntshona CEO, South African Tourism

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