Marginal increase in travellers in and out of SA over festive season

South Africa experienced a marginal increase in travellers over the festive season compared to the same period last year, the Department of Home Affairs says.

From December 1, 2018 to January 15, 2019, 6 852 972 people entered the country. This is a 0.61% increase from the same time during the previous year, when 6 811 510 people entered the country.

At a media briefing on Sunday, Home Affairs minister Siyabonga Cwele said the figure is mostly made up of foreign tourists entering the country.

The figure also includes people travelling in and out of the country for reasons of cross-country employment, business, and education programmes.

OR Tambo International Airport experienced the highest number of traveller volumes, Cwele said, with 997 167 traveller movements.

This was followed by Beit Bridge (884 992), Lebombo (625 975), Ficksburg Bridge (471 474) and Maseru Bridge (428 038).

The biggest number of travellers cleared at the country's ports of entry, according to Cwele, were from: Lesotho, Zimbabwe, Mozambique, Swaziland, Botswana, the United Kingdom, Germany, the USA, Namibia and Zambia.

"Statistics on traveller movement are an important indicator of how busy our ports are, and how efficient we are in processing movements…

"I thank our travellers for their conduct during this period and all officials across government for meticulous planning, execution and responsiveness to operational matters during the 2018/2019 festive season," Cwele said.

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