Foreign tourists keen to start visiting SA again

SA Tourism. File Picture

South African Tourism’s (SAT) strategy insights and analytics (SIA) team say foreigners are keen to visit SA again, with at least 45% saying they are ready to travel again once the virus woes blow over.

People overseas are regaining their appetite for travel and South Africa could be a big winner in the post-Covid-19 tourism world, believes South African Tourism (SAT).

The organisation’s strategy insights and analytics (SIA) team went online to ask people who have visited the country in the past three years what their travel plans were. And the findings were encouraging. Of those international travellers spoken to, 45% will avoid  travel, while 45% are inclined to either travel as they did in the past or travel more. The other 10% are indecisive.

In Europe, at least 62% were eager to travel abroad, while 29% said they would avoid taking international trips. In the Americas, 51% of the tourists surveyed were eager to travel and 28% said
they would avoid it.

African international travellers, on the other hand, were likely to defer travel until was is safe, or a vaccine is found.

SA Tourism says millennials, aged between 25-34 and tourists over 65 years old are most likely to express positive travel intentions.

The age group between 35 and 54 are the most negative.

Younger generations are eager to travel and are less risk adverse. Millennial travellers will be at the forefront of tourism recovery because of their relatively higher sense of safety for  themselves, SA Tourism said. Travellers without children are most likely to travel to international destinations, while parents are most likely to prefer domestic destinations.

Leisure and holiday are the main reasons for travel, followed by travel for business. Tourists who will avoid international travel said they would prefer destinations in their own country until it was safe enough to cross the borders. At the same time, tourists keen to travel were wary of potential price hikes and the affordability of travel.

Strong drivers for potential foreign visitors were spending time with friends and family, nature and scenic outdoors, while there was a much lower interest in indoor experiences such museums, spa and family entertainment centres.

South Africa is a preferred destination and the key reasons for wanting to visit South Africa were safari, visiting friends and relatives, and scenery.

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