SA Tourism targets GCC market with Arabian Travel Market showing

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As global travel once again picks up momentum, following the COVID-19 pandemic, South African Tourism is bolstering its marketing efforts in the Middle East market.

As such, South African Tourism will this year elevate its presence at the Arabian Travel Market. A leading international trade show which brings together global destinations to showcase their tourism offerings to this market, Arabian Travel Market takes place in Dubai from 9-12 May 2022.

This year, ten South African products and experiences will be showcasing authentically South African experiences, which are geared towards travelers from the Middle East. In addition, South African Tourism will be providing nine Small Medium and Micro Enterprises (SMMEs) the opportunity to showcase at the Arabian Travel Market. This is part of the organisation’s efforts to provide market access to upcoming tourism businesses, to not only aid in the recovery of the sector, but to ensure inclusion in the sector.

This will be the sixth time that South African Tourism will be participating at the Arabian Tourism Market, and for the first time, the trade show now forms part of the organisation’s nine strategic platforms due to the importance of the Middle Eastern market.

The South African Tourism delegation traveling to the Arabian Travel Market will be led by the Minister of Tourism, Honourable Lindiwe Sisulu and will include engagements with key trade partners to reignite travel between the two markets, in line with the sector’s recovery.

“It is really important for us to intensify our efforts in promoting our beautiful country on global platforms again as we have had limited opportunities to do so in the two last years. Our tourism sector recovery depends on this and of course on us working collaboratively to really show the full might of our tourism potential. I am looking forward to the engagements at Arabian Travel Market,” said Minister of Tourism, Lindiwe Sisulu.

South African Tourism Acting Chief Executive Officer, Themba Khumalo echoes the Minister’s sentiments.

“As our tourism sector recovers, we want to once again assure travellers from the Middle East that South Africa as a destination caters for them and is ready to welcome them onto our shores. South Africa is well positioned to cater for the needs of the Muslim traveler seeking the Halaal traveling experience,” says Khumalo.

The Middle East forms one of South Africa’s key source markets, contributing to international arrivals and although travel during the pandemic did slow down, travelers from this market are once again returning to South Africa. During January and February 2022, travel from the Middle East increased by 327% compared to the same period in 2021.

South Africa boasts various quality assured products and experiences to cater for the Middle East market including; family friendly accommodation establishments and activities, a diverse offering of cuisine, wildlife and safari as well as one-of-a-kind shopping experiences.

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