JOHANNESBURG, South Africa – African Tourism Ministers at Indaba 2016 are calling for a unified approach to marketing the continent as a growing travel destination.
The travel trade show over this weekend in Durban is expected to link buyers and exhibitors.
Welcoming a high level delegation of African Ministers, South African Tourism Minister Derek Hanekom urged them to seize the opportunities that the Indaba brings.
Every single African country here, whether it’s Swaziland or Angola, is fighting for a share of the wallet
Hanekom says the travel trade show is aimed not only at showcasing countries’ destinations but also at making key connections and developing relationships in the industry.
“This year we have over a thousand exhibitors here at Indaba. We’ve got 1 648 buyers, 575 members of the media here. This is your opportunity like you’ve never had it. We have already set up and confirmed 14 000 meetings between exhibitors and buyers.”
Brand Leadership chairperson, Thebe Ikalafeng, focused on building the African brand collectively. He urged leaders in the tourism industry to tap into the experience of a traveller.
“Every single African country here, whether it’s Swaziland or Angola, is fighting for a share of the wallet, but what matters is your understanding of what the brand is, it is really a person’s gut feeling about a product, place, country, it’s not what you say it is, it’s what the people say it is. So the experience people have when they come to our country is very important because that experience is the brand they take with when they leave their countries.”