South African Tourism organises Corporate Think Tank in India

After concluding an extremely successful Annual India Roadshow 2024, South African Tourism has kickstarted the third edition of its incentive travel initiative – Corporate Think Tank. Following its inaugural event in Mumbai on 02nd February and its second chapter in Delhi on 23rd February, the event recently concluded its third chapter in Bengaluru, the IT capital of India, on 7th March. It is now gearing up to arrive in Chennai on 15th March and Hyderabad on 22nd March 2024.

India is amongst the largest markets contributing to inbound incentives travel in South Africa. Demonstrating marked success following the previous editions, Corporate Think Tank programmes have emerged as an essential platform for South African Tourism to understand and simplify corporate travel needs for Indian businesses. Hosting such events enables the tourism board to connect with decision makers and solidify its relationships. Owing to attractive exchange rates in comparison with USD ($1 = 82.70 INR approx.) and GBP (£1 = 105.50 INR approx.) The Rainbow Nation remains one of the most affordable and accessible international destinations, with 1 ZAR valued at just 4.40 INR approximately. Besides, the tourism board has observed a visible appetite for South Africa as an incentive destination against the backdrop of increased focus on such travel programmes by Indian corporates.

Led by Neliswa Nkani, Hub Head – Middle East, India and South-East Asia, South African Tourism the Corporate Think Tanks are specifically curated to be highly interactive and encourage attendees to participate in a healthy free flowing discussion. At a time when outbound tourism from India is firing on all cylinders, engagement sessions such as these assists in setting the ground for quick recall and are particularly aimed at capitalising on the growing demand in Meetings, Incentives, Conferences and Exhibitions travel segment. The conversations during the session touched upon varied subjects from South Africa’s infrastructure in accommodating corporate travellers, closed door meetings and seminars to the destination’s USP for incentive led travel.

Nkani said, “Today, South Africa stands out as a preferred premier yet value for money destination in conducting vital business events for corporates from India and around the world. Our recent successful hosting of BRICS Summit serves as a testament to the Rainbow Nation’s world class capabilities in supporting large scale conventions as well as intimate corporate gatherings.”

She further added, “India has been a long-standing ally to South Africa, and it is heartening to witness the friendship materialising in an economically beneficial partnership for both the nations. The country has been fast climbing up the ladder of outbound tourism and emerged amongst the leading contributors to the travel and tourism sector from Asia. On the back of strengthening demand, we hope to continue building on the MICE travel momentum from India in 2024.”

South Africa boasts some of the world’s most breathtaking landscapes, thrilling 3,000+ adventure activities catering to millennials, and mesmerizing wildlife encounters. Employees arriving on incentive trips are presented with many opportunities, from surfing through wildlife safaris, road-tripping famous routes or basking in the nation’s natural beauty, all within a week. Understanding the importance of quick turnarounds, South African Tourism processes corporate visas within 5-7 working days. The country has a glowing track record and have successfully addressed MICE travel needs of renowned Indian corporations across India in the past.

India holds a position of strategic importance for South African Tourism and has cemented itself amongst the top three growth markets. The country’s growth over the recent years has outperformed many nations and displayed remarkable resilience. Being the Silicon Valley of India, Bengaluru is a city of foremost significance in realising the tourism board’s MICE arrivals targets from India. Amongst the overall inbound traffic from Bengaluru in 2023, 53% of visitors chose the Rainbow Nation for professional travel needs. Adopting a multi-faceted approach, the tourism board also conducted its Annual India Roadshow 2024 in the city to tap into Bengaluru’s vibrant leisure travel market.

Overall, South Africa welcomed 79,774 Indian travellers last year, marking an increase of 43% in visitors from India on a year-on-year basis. Notably, 46% of overall travellers were motivated by business travel of which MICE alone attracted 21% signifying its underlying potential. To further propel this momentum, the tourism board will continue with its efforts to improve accessibility and encourage dialogues aimed at establishing direct air connectivity to boost tourism and trade between the two nations. In its endeavor of providing further value to travellers coming to the Rainbow Nation the tourism board is also running a campaign in partnership with Ethiopian Airlines offering return fares to South Africa starting at just Rs. 39,990.


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