A volatile rand and slow GDP growth is not all bad news. Tourism is one sector that stands to benefit from a relatively weaker currency, and hotels, guesthouses lodges, camps, restaurants and tour operators can all expect a busy festive season.
South Africa remains a popular luxury destination for many international travellers; especially as it offers a world-class experience from shopping to pristine beaches and unforgettable safari’s at a fraction of the price. It means that tourists can spend more here than they would in their home countries.
Giving tourists more bang for their buck
Wiza Nyondo, head of tourism at FNB Business, says our main tourism feeder markets are Germany, the United Kingdom, the United States and our neighbouring countries – which have also experienced the 2016 financial pinch, and see South Africa as an attractive and cost effective destination.
Nyondo shares a few tips that businesses can consider to retain some spend from holiday makers this this festive season:
To win from the weak rand, you must make the price attractive to the tourist. The best thing to do in this instance is to sell block bookings at a slightly lower rate than singular bookings.
Another great way of taking advantage of this season is to charge less for longer stays. It is the best way to ensure ‘bums on beds’ that have the potential to spend more on other offerings.
Consider packaged and shared services
When people are on holiday, they are essentially looking to have fun, be relaxed, and not have without having to think too much. An ecosystem that is focused on partnerships where businesses from related sectors combine to create one package to sell to the end consumer at preferential pricing.
An example is a tour operator, a restaurant owner, and a hotel owner – these parties can develop packaged holiday programs that will see all of them create revenue streams and most importantly continue driving business through added value services, while taking the stress of the holiday makers.
Make it an experience
Remember that above all else, the reasons one travels are to see, feel, and experience something outside of their normal. Beyond the rands and cents, remember to treat your customers as gold and they are likely to be repeat visitors.
“Most of all, position your business competitively and keep in mind that price will play a big role this festive season. The tourists that will visit our country are also likely travelling on a guarded budget, so make them want to spend their money on your business”, concludes Nyondo