This week, Minister van Schalkwyk announced South Africa's year-end tourism arrival numbers and the overall number of tourists to South Africa grew by 15.1% to over 8 million compared to 2009. This compares very well in international terms. Figures from the United Nations World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO) show that global tourism arrivals is estimated to have grown by 6.7% in 2010, which means that South Africa outperformed the global market by more than 8%.
In 2010 the US had one of its strongest years yet. A total of 282,377 tourists visited South Africa which is a 22.6% growth over 2009. While the World Cup clearly gave a significant boost to growth in 2010, it must be noted that all subsequent months till year-end performed fairly well signaling a rebound in travel following the recession. This is a remarkable achievement and we all have something to be proud of. This is a collective effort and we are grateful for all that you do to promote and sell destination South Africa in the United States. Congratulations to all of you!
For a month-on-month comparison and trendline on US specific tourist arrivals please see the chart below and for additional statistics and research, please visit SouthAfrica.net/research.
Sthu Zungu, President