Appetite for travel to South Africa is still alive during the pandemic

Through Travel journalist 1h ago

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Hotel management software provider RoomRaccoon said there is always a strong appetite for travel.

The company saw a sharp increase in bookings for December 2020 and between February and May 2021, immediately after the second wave of Covid-19.

Niels Verspui, Country Manager at RoomRaccoon South Africa, said hoteliers, guest houses and lodge owners should know there is light at the end of the tunnel.

“Obviously, there is still an appetite for domestic business and leisure travel, although most South Africans cannot travel abroad at the moment. We expect to see a similar trend once the third wave peaks and declines.

Statistics from RoomRaccoon during and after the second wave of Covid-19 infections in the country showed that bookings for accommodation companies nearly doubled in December, February, March, April and May 2021, with up to to 60% of rooms booked in those months, well above the benchmark of 30%. Tourism business owners should not give up hope and should prepare for a similar rebound after the third wave “, a- he explained.

According to Verspui, the majority of customers are making future bookings for accommodation located in both small towns and major subways. He said establishments in coastal areas, including Cape Town’s Atlantic coast, Stellenbosch and Franschhoek regions, the Garden Route and Drakensberg, had the highest occupancy rates.

And, although leisure travel to Gauteng is currently limited, people are still making last-minute reservations in the area for business or essential activities permitted by current restrictions.

“Hoteliers should also note that the behavior of travelers is changing. For example, customers book rooms between Monday and Friday on average, with a marked drop at weekends. It could also be attributed to conscious travelers looking to avoid crowds or business trips. step.

“With these trends in mind, it is vital for the industry to seek ways to operate safely alongside the virus – based on the learnings and solutions implemented over the past year. More and more independent and mid-sized hosting establishments are adding contactless elements to the customer experience, including contactless payments via an app or email, ”he added.

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