Talking Tourism – Annual Tourism Statistics 2012

This morning President Jacob Zuma released some encouraging figures on the growth of tourism from South Africa’s Annual Tourism Statistics 2012.

The report revealed that a total of 9 188 368 international tourists visited South Africa in 2012. This was 10.2% more than the 8 339 354 tourists in 2011.

Europe remained the greatest source market of overseas tourists to South Africa, with the second biggest market, the United States, up 13.6% on 2011 arrival figures.

A key area of development for South African tourism has been emerging markets, and this is paying off. Since 2009, arrivals from China have more than tripled, while arrivals from Brazil and India have doubled. In 2012, China became South Africa’s fourth biggest overseas tourism market, with a 55.9% increase on 2011 arrivals figures.

Inbound tourism from Africa has maintained a solid growth path – up 8.5% on 2011 tourist arrival stats.

Read President Zuma’s full address here.

Cape Town Tourism would like to commend the fantastic work that South African Tourism is doing in sustaining and growing our tourism sector. Cape Town has long enjoyed the economic and social benefits of robust tourism, but is it ready for a new type of traveller?

The demands and expectations of emerging-market travellers are very different from those of the source markets that we have created our industry around. It’s time to take a critical look at how we are developing to meet the next wave of tourism.

Cape Town Tourism would like to commit to its membership and tourism stakeholders that we are currently devising materials to assist the tourism industry in maximising and adapting its businesses for a new type of traveller. We will share our knowledge and industry network with you soon.

We would also like to congratulate you for your part in making South Africa a great destination.

Mariette Du Toit-Helmbold
Cape Town Tourism CEO

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