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Thursday, 22 February, 2018, 12 : 57 PM [IST]

South African Tourism targets 5 million travellers by 2021

Mumbai, the business capital of India, contributed 37% of total Indian arrivals to South Africa in 2017. Following Mumbai, Delhi contributed 22% of Indian arrivals, while Bengaluru and Kolkata stood at 8% and 7% respectively. As per the latest data provided by South African Tourism (SAT), from January to November 2017, a total of 89,882 Indians travelled to South Africa. The tourism board has set a target of welcoming 5 million travellers by 2021.

As far as travel segmentation of Indian outbound is concerned, the MICE segment contributed the maximum with 32.8% arrivals, followed by leisure at 26.8%, while business travellers contributed 16.4% and VFR stood at 16%. In terms of latest trend observation, millennial travellers from India to South Africa represented 35% and 46% of total Indian arrivals in Q1 and Q2 of 2017. The length of stay of Indian visitors has also increased from 11 nights to 13 nights.

South Africa welcomed 9.2 million tourists from across the globe between January and November 2017, recording a 2.4% y-o-y increase.

SAT is organising the 15th edition of its India Roadshow in five Indian cities i.e. Mumbai, Kolkata, Bengaluru, Delhi and Ahmedabad starting from February 12 to 19, 2018. 60 exhibitors from South Africa, representing DMCs, Activities, Hoteliers, Local Tourism Boadies, etc., are travelling to these five cities to engage with the Indian travel trade and grow their share of business. The tourism authority has extended the roadshow to a new market this year i.e. Ahmedabad. This year, SAT also kept an extra day dedicated only to one-on-one focused meetings for the exhibitors in Mumbai and Delhi.

Alpa Jani with Hanneli Slabber

Interacting at the Mumbai roadshow, Alpa Jani, Acting Hub-Head, Middle East/India/South East Asia, South Africa Tourism, said, “We have always recorded an outstanding response from the Indian travel trade and are eagerly looking forward to seeing the positive impact this roadshow will have towards driving Indian traveller traffic to South Africa in 2018. Adventure activities are picking up great interest among India travellers and they are exploring these activities and excursions in the smaller and not so popular towns which is an encouraging sight for us. We are also focusing on customising our engagements and product offerings to suit the unique requirements from each of our target regions within India.”

SAT’s trade and consumer initiatives this year for the Indian market will all be aligned towards driving awareness and demand for the adventure and wildlife offerings of South Africa. It will also be equally focusing on promoting the new destination offerings of the country within both consumer and trade spaces.

Hanneli Slabber, Regional General Manager, Asia/Australasia/Middle East, SAT was also present at the roadshow. Highlighting the importance of India for South Africa, Slabber said that India ranks as eight largest source market for South Africa and every year the numbers are increasing. “The Indian market has not just grown considerably since our entry here in 2005, demands of Indian travellers are in a constant and is in rapid state of evolution even today. This makes cross sharing of insights, trends and observations between our Indian and South African partners extremely crucial. We have over 60,000 South African tourism products being tailored to suit these specific needs as a testament of the value proposition we see in the market,” she added.

Talking about the multi-city training programme ‘Learn South Africa’, Jani said that SAT last year organised 19 training sessions across 17 cities in India and collaborated with Travel Agents Association of India (TAAI) for the same. “Having trained around 1,810 trade members in 2017, this year again we plan to do the same in July, but we are still finalising the cities,” she stated. The tourism board is targeting over 100,000 Indian arrivals in 2018.

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