Dear Partners in Tourism
I’m sure that all will agree that being in tourism is definitely not for the faint-hearted. Considering what we’ve been through during the last 2 years we probably should have expected a few more curveballs – the recovery has not been smooth-sailing.
First Putin invaded the Ukraine to end any smooth recovery hopes….and then the roller-coaster ride started. I’m sure I don’t have to highlight the loops and curves that we all had to contend with.
One constant that we’ve however noticed in this recovery conundrum is the fact that people are now more than ever before looking for a reliable and trustworthy partner.
Over the many years (we celebrate our 24th year in August) we’ve ensured that our reputation in this regards remains unblemished and constantly enhanced. Our regular and long-time partners have always valued it but we’ve noticed how this has been cemented both during COVID19 and also during the recovery phase.
Trust in our knowledge and expertise; trust in our honest business practices; trust in our reputation to deliver as expected; trust in our relationships with our suppliers such as hotels, lodges and activity providers; trust in the fact that we’ve remained financially solid (although a bit bruised like everyone else); trust in our ability to retain and look after a team of people that are integral to our ability to deliver and to WOW; trust in our understanding of the tough journey our partners also endured and trust to the fact that we’ve remained committed to always deliver exceptional value to our partners, our suppliers, the destinations we work in and the tourism industry in general.
The concept of ‘fair partners’ has never been more important. But I’m also under no illusion that those with a totally different mind-set will soon be popping out of the woodwork again. We however believe our partners (both established and new) will see the value of a trusted, reliable and fair business ethic and partnership.
As we’re about to head into the traditional high season period for South Africa we’d like to highlight a few things:
- South Africa has removed all COVID19 regulations. There is thus no entry regulations around vaccination (please note however some of our neighbouring countries still have vaccination requirement regulations in place). There is no mask mandate and masks are not required anywhere, however those who still wish to wear a mask can naturally do so.
- South Africa is a destination that lends itself to outdoor living and activities. And we have lots on natural open spaces.
- South Africa has been open to international tourists since October 2020. Hotels, restaurants and other tourism related companies have been operating for an extended period.
- The South African tourism industry is not experiencing teething issues such as airport luggage handling struggles, flight delays and cancellations or hospitality staff shortages that has been commonplace in much of Europe, US and Australia.
- South Africa and its people remain a welcoming, open, friendly and hospitable society.
- South Africa remains an exceptional value-for-money destination.
High demand periods:
- The Rugby World Cup Sevens takes place in Cape Town 9-11 September 2022. Availability is critical and all Cape Town hotels will apply surcharges over these dates and on the days immediately prior to and after the event. The rest of the country is not affected with availability issues over this period and with prior itinerary planning, stays in Cape Town over these dates can be avoided.
- Many December 2021 bookings were postponed due to Covid (Omnicron) related travel bans. The majority of these bookings postponed to December 2022. Availability (particularly & predominantly in the 5 star category) is thus critical from just before Christmas until after New Year. As these postponed bookings are already fully paid, a change in the situation is unlikely. Suppliers are therefore ultra-strict on new bookings and implement strict terms and conditions around immediate full payment and non-refundable deposits for the Christmas/New Year period.
- Travel outside these 2 high demand periods are encouraged and welcomed. Please don’t hesitate to contact us on enquiries for the rest of 2022. And of course 2023 too!
As we approach Spring and look forward to seeing the Jacarandas in bloom again, we wish all our partners a speedy and spectacular tourism recovery.