By Wallace Mawire
Zimbabwe continues to target the South African market as it remains the most significant market from mainland Africa accounting for 42% of arrivals from the continent and with a 23% increase from 679937 in 2014 to 744 627 in 2015, a Zimbabwe Tourism Authority (ZTA) spokesperson has announced.
According to the spokesperson, despite the weakening of the rand currency in the recent months and economic slowdown of South Africa, Zimbabwe recorded growth in tourist arrivals from its Southern neighbor during 2015.
Speaking on Zimbabwe’s participation at Indaba 2016 the Zimbabwe Tourism Authority Chief Operating Officer, Givemore Chidzidzi said ‘Positive results through the participation at Indaba by the private sector has even seen some operators having their own stands at the show. International tourism arrivals in Zimbabwe have largely been dominated by the South African market principally due to the market’s proximity.
Chidzidzi said that this emphasized the need to have a campaign targeted at the South African market and this will be launched later in the year.
South Africa has a growing middle income group that has a high propensity to travel and Zimbabwe ought to get its fair share, according to ZTA.
He added that it should be noted that the majority of South African visitors to Zimbabwe prefer to drive and as such their smooth passage into and through the country needs to be guaranteed by all concerned.’
“The Zimbabwe Tourism Authority is very happy with the support the private operators continue to provide at international shows in different source markets. This participation is important for the promotion of the destination image and positioning Zimbabwe as a safe and peaceful tourist destination in our region and the African continent at large,” Chidzidzi said.
The Zimbabwe Tourism Industry, led by the Honourable Deputy Minister of Tourism and Hospitality Industry, MsAnnatsaciaNdlovhu participated at one of the largest tourism marketing events on the African calendar and one of the top three ‘must attend’ events of its kind on the global calendar, Indaba.
Hosted annually in Durban, South Africa, Indaba showcases the widest variety of Southern Africa’s best tourism products and attracts international buyers and media from across the world. The show is set to ran from 7 to 9 May 2016.
A total of 21 tourism operators exhibited at the Zimbabwe stand marketing the destination Zimbabwe ‘A World of Wonders’. Among the tourism industry players participating at Indaba 2016 were Ilala Lodge, Wild Horizons, Legacy Hotels and Resorts, Cresta Hotels, Nyati Travel, Southern Africa Tourism Services, Civil Aviation Authority of Zimbabwe, Zimbabwe Parks and Wildlife Management Authority of Zimbabwe, Rainbow Tourism Group, Eastern Highlands Experience and Off the track Expeditions.