South Africa at a glance
Seeing that tourism is a significant contributor to the country’s annual revenue, there have been several measures to support the industry, through initiatives by the government. Through the South African Tourism agency,
the state has been able to market its attractions to both local and international tourists. This agency, put together by government agencies, works to deal with challenges that the tourism sector may be facing at a given time. An example of such a
trial would be in attracting tourists from other parts of the world such as China.
Chinese tourists are a lucrative market. However, it has been hard for players in the tourism industry to convince them to tour South Africa. While some have kept away owing to the soaring crime rates in the country, others
have been hesitant because of the stringent visa policies regarding children. It is important to note that one must have a visa to gain entry into the country.
There are countries which are exempt to this rule, but their citizens have to obtain a port entry visa though. The agency looks into such matters and thinks of ways to regulate players in the industry to create a safe environment
in which tourists can feel comfortable. Their efforts have been seen to increase the number of visitors in the past few years.
Other than dealing with security and policy concerns, the agency also handles the image of tourism in South Africa. There was a time that players in the industry emphasized on the cheapness of travels in the country. Though
this worked for a while, the agency felt that it was better for people to market the sector as being a value-for-your-money-destination. With this in place, more people felt confident about visiting the country. The
notion that cheap is always expensive thus held in this scenario and the agency helped players avoid losing customers.
The SA Tourism Agency also does extensive research on what works for tourists as well as the trends in the industry. Through looking at the image of the sector as well as the willingness of visitors to tour the country
at another time, they can see where players are going wrong and thus put measures to help them out.
The country is quite big, boasting of national parks to the north, vibrant cities all around and expansive coastlines to the east, west, and south. For this reason, people visiting the country have an array of options available
Tourists can choose to tour the game reserves where they can view wildlife, hike and enjoy the beautiful landscapes in the country as they delve into African culture, and enjoy a diverse range
of wines as they take a safari in the parks. There is no shortage of activities in the region, and there are lots of hotels in which tourists can stay.
Summarized, the options include but are not limited to eco-tourism, bio-diversity, cultural attractions and heritage sites.
A survey done in August 2017 revealed that 3.5 million travellers had passed through the points of entry in South Africa. Most of the international visitors came from Germany, France, USA, the Netherlands, and the UK. There
were also visitors from other parts of Africa, with most of them coming from Botswana, Mozambique, Swaziland, and Lesotho. As of 2015, the country recorded fifteen million overnight foreign visitors. The number keeps
growing by the day, owing to measures taken by the SA Tourism agency and players in the industry.
There are thus projections showing that the numbers will keep rising as more and more people appreciate the beauty that is South Africa.