by Simon Capstick-Dale

With open arms

Cape Town gears up for Festive season arrivals

Cape Town gears up for Festive season arrivals
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The UN World Tourism Organisation is predicting that the number of international tourists will surpass the one-billion mark for the first time, despite the challenging economic conditions, amounting to a growth of three or four percent for the year. And the good news for Cape Town’s tourism and hospitality sector is that they are expecting one of its most successful festive seasons of all time. 

Susanne Faussner, a board member at the Federated Hospitality Association of Southern Africa (Fedhasa), said that accommodation occupancy projections in Cape Town for December were up by 10 percent compared to last year and she expected the “season” to last until the end of March 2013.

Another indicator is the percentage of hired cars booked for the peak season. Our information tells us that hired cars in Cape Town are ‘sold out’ between December 24 and January 6, which hasn't happened since the economic downturn in 2008.

Flights over Christmas are also all full and the business class on the Lufthansa service from Munich is booked until March. This is an indicator of an influx in high-value customers.

"The mood in the industry is optimistic and understandably so,” said Faussner

In 2012 alone Cape Town received these accolades:

  • Favourite City World Wide, Telegraph Travel Awards 2012
  • Number Two City in the World, Condé Nast Traveller Readers’ Choice Awards 2012
  • Top City in Africa, Condé Nast Traveller Readers’ Choice Awards 2012
  • Eight beaches and two marinas got Blue Flag Status 2012
  • Best Beach Destination in Africa, World Travel Awards 2012
  • The World’s Top City in Africa and the Middle East, Travel + Leisure World’s Best Awards 2012
  • Fourth Top City in the World, Travel + Leisure World’s Best Awards 2012
  • Muizenberg was voted One of National Geographic’s World’s 20 Best Surf Towns
  • 8th Top 10 Truly Unique Beaches in the World, Tripadvisor 2012
  • One of the World’s Ten Most Loved Cities 2012, CNNgo
  • Top 25 Destinations in the World, Tripadvisor Travelers’ Choice Awards 2012
  • Top 10 Beach Destinations in Africa, Tripadvisor Travelers’ Choice Awards 2012
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