- South African Tourism has launched its Automated Data Capturing Solution, which will require establishments to register their guests using a QR code.
- The SA Tourism CEO explained that ACDS is currently being rolled out at 150 of South Africa’s 5 300 graded establishments with the rest to follow.
- Consumers will have access to a feedback line and email address to report non-compliance.
South Africans travelling to the country’s Covid-19 hotspot areas can expect graded accommodation establishments to capture their details digitally to assist with tracking and tracing of positive cases.
On Wednesday, South African Tourism (SA Tourism) launched its Automated Data Capturing Solution (ACDS), which will require establishments to register their guests using a QR code. The body’s CEO Sisa Ntshona said the solution was funded by its business unit, the Tourism Grading Council of South Africa, using membership fees.
Ntshona said the launch follows the identification of Nelson Mandela Bay, Sarah Baartman and the Garden Route municipalities as the country's top three hotspots and the discovery of a new variant of the virus.
“These particular three areas actually experienced heightened lockdown levels and restrictions some businesses in this area experienced 50% cancellations because places like beaches are being closed,” he said.
The SA Tourism CEO explained that ACDS is currently being rolled out at 150 of South Africa’s 5 300 graded establishments with the rest to follow.
“Our graded establishments are on the front line of the pandemic as they welcome guests both local and international to their establishments.
“They need to be equipped with the necessary tools to create awareness, and at the same time ensure that safety protocols and compliance are adhered to,” said Ntshona.
He added that the power to ensure the compliance of establishments was with consumers, who will have access to a feedback line and email address to report non-compliance. Ntshona said Covid-19 had accelerated the development and rollout of the digital solution, which will be a permanent fixture at establishments, as the need for better hygiene practices heightens.
The country’s tourism sector has been battered by the pandemic and the lockdowns that have come with it and is on the road to recovery, which will take some time.
“Globally, tourism is at 1990 levels, so it is going to take us at least five years just to take us to 2019 levels. There’s still a long road ahead of us,” said Ntshona.
He also encouraged travellers to ensure that they stick continue to sanitise and use masks to travel “off the beaten path” to curb the spread of the virus.