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Digitilisation in the tourism sector

Nasreen Ismail, information officer from Tourism KwaZulu-Natal's information office based at Ushaka Marine World illustrating how easy it is to navigate through Tourism KZN's Travel Guide App. The app allows travellers to access information about the province. Tourism KwaZulu-Natal Nasreen Ismail, information officer from Tourism KwaZulu-Natal's information office based at Ushaka Marine World illustrating how easy it is to navigate through Tourism KZN's Travel Guide App. The app allows travellers to access information about the province.
Tourism KwaZulu-Natal's Travel Guide App gaining momentum in the digital space
 
May 07, 2019 
 
Supplied 
 
KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa: Digitilisation has taken the tourism sector by storm – from reviews on destinations, to booking your holiday, to making decisions about your vacations or business trips, all at the touch of your fingers.

Tourism KwaZulu-Natal’s KZN Travel Guide app, which was launched last year, is gaining momentum uses increasing on a month to month basis.
 
Furthermore the entity’s Virtual Reality displays like the one displayed at Africa’s Travel Indaba including a surf ride, zip line and zulu dancing has helped boost local and international tourism.

The app allows travellers to access a range of information about the province like their activities, eateries and accommodation with a click of a button.
 
The Acting CEO of Tourism KwaZulu-Natal, Phindile Makwakwa, said the app encouraged locals and visitors to explore the province without having to spend hours looking at brochures.

“We applaud the advancements and critical role digital transformation has played in growing an inclusive and sustainable tourism economy in our province.
“We are ready for these changes and look forward to the future of travel,” she said.
 
Makwakwa continued: “There was a time when planning a holiday was a daunting project, with information on diverse tourism offerings not easily available. But travelling anywhere these days is just a click away, usually preceded by Trip Advisor searches and recommendations. A savvy potential tourist checks to see what other people have to say about their experiences before booking. Businesses which therefore deliver exceptional service to their guests can only benefit, as the power of the digital space runs supreme.
 
“Digitalisation was the UN World Tourism Organisation’s (UNWTO) theme for 2018. And that’s why we at Tourism KwaZulu-Natal are encouraging the tourism trade, particularly emerging tourism enterprises, to embrace it. When tourism businesses go digital, they can gain important insights on what consumers look for when making travel decisions, and
can package their offerings to be in line with market trends, ensuring business growth and sustainability.”
 
At Africa’s Travel Indaba, Minister of Tourism Derek Hanekom introduced Jurni, a first-of-its-kind Travel and Tourism Data Management Company.
 
The initiative, hailed as an innovative collaboration between the private sector and the National Department of Tourism, will seek to fill some of the gaps identified by the National Tourism Sector Strategy.
Jurni will ensure that relevant technology solutions are built to meet industry needs with the ultimate goal of collecting and showcasing meaningful travel and tourism data.
 
Dr Nomvuselelo Songelwa, CEO of Jurni, said the digital platforms will help generate missing data that the industry needs to make better decisions, reach the traveller more effectively and connect SMMEs to the global market.
 
“Jurni is a big step for the South African digital space as it will help to merge new and old data through our digital platforms like the Jurni App and Information Portal that will be developed soon.
 
“Jurni will, therefore, provide a centralised data hub that will help the travel industry better respond to the needs of the traveller visiting South Africa,” she said.
 
The platform will also afford smaller SMMEs the opportunity to showcase the hidden tourist attractions and establishments.
 
A visitor app and information portal set to launch soon will provide travellers with a wealth of useful real-time travel information including GEO-location and mapping of South African experiences, access to a tourist safety tool, a helpline and social media sharing.
 
Last modified onTuesday, 07 May 2019 10:29
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