by Simon Capstick-Dale

Jazz Fest: a boost for tourism

Rhythm of the city

The Jazz festival promises to be a huge tourist attraction

In order to meet the tourism ministry's target of creating more than 225 000 jobs in the tourism sector by 2020, the tourism industry needs to make an concerted effort to take full advantage of events, such as the Cape Town International Jazz Festival, which created 2 715 jobs in 2012 and will do the same for South Africa's tourism industry this year.

This weekend (5-7 April) will see the 14th annual Cape Town International Jazz Festival take place, an event considered to be the largest lifestyle festival in Africa and a major draw card on South Africa's social calendar. The festival provides not only the opportunity for attendees to see both international and local artists performing, but it has a significant beneficial impact on the local economy and tourism.

The Jazz Festival has grown year-on-year and currently attracts approximately 33 500 people from South Africa and abroad. Apart from the festival providing an additional boost for tourism in terms of revenue for the city, the festival attendees make use of local hotels and restaurants, which in turn stimulates job creation.

Research conducted by espAfrika revealed that festival goers who traveled to Cape Town for the 2010 Cape Town International Jazz Festival spent most of their money on accommodation, followed by food, restaurants and transport. The 2012 festival summary report revealed that it generated R29.7 million based on visitor spending and the total direct spending amounted to R50.8 million.

Nick Seewer, CEO of Pepperclub Hotel & Spa says that this research proves that the capital generated by the festival flows directly into the tourism industry, which is very encouraging. He adds that in addition to the economic boost, events of this scale also promote the country as a tourist destination, as well as to allow the country to showcase its ability to host world class events.

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