Let’s hear it for CT!

2015-07-28 15:46

Your raving review of the Mother City is boosting tourism.

This as 37% of visitors list word-of-mouth as their top information source on Cape Town, followed by the internet.

This was made public by Wesgro, the official tourism, trade and investment promotion agency for Cape Town and the Western Cape, as part of its research on Cape Town visitor trends for January to September last year.

“The release of annual trends gives us the opportunity to evaluate the success of our strategy in promoting Cape Town. Trends tell us where visitors are going, what activities they like, where they like to stay, how much they are willing to spend and so on,” explains Wesgro CEO Tim Harris.

As tourism becomes more competitive around the world, it’s no longer good enough to rely on the beautiful scenery and natural experiences of Cape Town, says Velma Corcoran, marketing manager at Cape Town Tourism.

“Staying in tune with trends allows us to adapt to the needs of our visitors and to ensure that we are equipped to cater for them,” she says.

Word of mouth is crucial to the travel industry, Corcoran says.

“Frequently, travel consumers hear about cities or experiences through word-of-mouth first. The best brand ambassadors are the travellers, who share their experiences about Cape Town,” she says.

This is also frequently regarded as more credible information, explains Harris.

“Visitors to the destination have a specific experience and relay these messages to friends, colleagues and family. It is therefore very important for us as a destination to enhance the visitor experience. In this way visitors have a positive story to tell about their time sent with us, which either leads to repeat visits or new visitors,” he says.

The trends show that almost 90% of visitors come to the Mother City for holiday, and more than 30% stay for a week or more.

Almost half of visitors spend between R500 and R1000 per day while in the city.

The majority of travellers who come to Cape Town are here for a holiday, Corcoran confirms.

“When these visitors are here, they want to get the whole experience and to absorb as much of our beautiful city as they can. Whether it is a nature walk, a shopping trip to the Vandamp;A Waterfront or a ferry ride to Robben Island, all these activities easily can take up to a day to enjoy. These numbers are encouraging as they show that there is depth to our tourism offering. Ultimately our purpose is to get more visitors to Cape Town all year round, but then to get those visitors to stay longer and experience more,” she says.

Domestic visitors – the majority from Gauteng – take part mostly in nature activities, followed by going to the beach and dining out at gourmet restaurants.

Foreign visitors, of which 23% come from Germany and 15% from the United Kingdom, also listed the city’s nature activities as their first pick. Cultural and heritage activities followed.

“With natural scenic beauty found throughout our province, this is easy to understand,” says Harris. “We need to ensure that our nature activities remain sustainable.”


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