Last year the annual Indaba festival drew quite a crowd. Countries from all across the continent were represented including those from the East African region.
Although it’s still January and definitely along way from the festival which is usually held in may, Tanzania is set to attend the festival and market their tourism products. This years festival is slated for 9th -11th May 2015 in Durban South Africa. The Tourism Confederation of Tanzania (TCT) has confirmed Tanzania’s participation.
South Africa’s tourism Indaba is Africa’s biggest platform for promoting tourism. It is the biggest event where Africans in the tourism business across the continent get to meet global buyers for their products and services. The three day event gives various players in the tourism industry a chance to showcase their travel trade products and services in bid to attract more buyers from other parts of the world. It is owned by South African Tourism and organized by Pure Grit Project and Exhibitions Management (Pty) Ltd.
According to South African Minister for Tourism Dereck Hanekom, Indaba is the heartbeat of an African industry that’s united in Spirit. Hanekom believes that there is an entrepreneurial spirit that is shared across the continent and it is this spirit that is helping the tourism industry develop as fast as it is.
Tourism is a robust and thriving sector of the African economy that is powering job creation and economic growth.
Across the continent, tourism is faced with a challenge of attracting market in a very competitive area of business, Indaba brings together various stakeholders and ideas on how this challenge and others facing the industry can best be handled.
Sam Kasulwa, TCT’s media communications officer said that preparations are underway for Tanzanian tour operators to submit applications and register for stands. According to Kasulwa, TCT plays the role of mentoring local tour operators so as to benefit from the trade fair. They also train hotel staff to improve efficiency.
“This is an opportunity for our country to illustrate how our tourism offerings have differentiated themselves by using our unique cultural, historical and natural assets to the full benefit of our industry,” said Kasulwa. “Our work is to encourage as many stakeholders to participate in the showcase so they can realise their full potential. To achieve this, we organize training sessions for tour operators whereby we teach them how to negotiate deals with foreign tour operators like airline companies. Such training helps to enhance professionalism in the industry.”
In a bid to market Tanzania’s tourism, and increase the number of visitors coming to the country to enjoy Tanzania safari trips, Tanzania exhibited its products at Indaba 2014. The ministry of Tourism and Natural resources got the opportunity to market Tanzania’s tourist attractions such as the Kilimanjaro mountains, the Serengeti national park and several other game parks that are full of wildlife and birds and exciting things to see.