Travel professionals from around the globe gathered in South Africa over the weekend for the annual INDABA event.
Held in Durban from 9 to 11 May, a record number of hosted buyers attended this year, with some 299 hosted buyers from key tourism markets coming from Australasia, Europe, the Americas and Africa.
Of those buyers, 285 were from outside South Africa.
The other 14 were South African buyers and over 90 percent of INDABA exhibiting floor space (10 511 square metres) was assigned to exhibitors.
According to Themba Masheula from the iconic Blue Train, exhibiting at the event every year is vital to her business because around 65 percent of her clients come from international markets.
“INDABA offers direct access to these markets… [and] an opportunity to meet with clients and increase our occupancy. We always get value and good business from INDABA.”
Themba Masheula, Blue Train Manager
Jaco du Plooy, Marketing Manager at Cape Town’s four-star Lord Charles Hotel said INDABA gave the company the opportunity to touch base with existing clients and network with key industry players.
“It also showcases what our competitors are up to and gives us an insight into new developments in the market.”
Jaco du Plooy, Lord Charles Hotel Marketing Manager
This year, guests to the annual exhibition was treated to a pre-party at The Market Restaurant where attendees were joined by Sun International Miss South Africa 2015.
During the evening, Miss South Africa aka Liesl Laurie chatted to guests about her home land and people.
Tourism KwaZulu-Natal hosted the Annual Tourism INDABA Breakfast this year, which allowed organisations to update international media and trade on key developments in the province.
The Business Buyers Lounge returned this year in direct response to interest from exhibitors and South African Tourism’s determination to put exhibitors first at INDABA through offering optimised business opportunities.
The Business Buyers Lounge at INDABA 2015 gave exhibitors an exclusive area to accommodate deal-making meetings with buyers.
On the show floor, 24 destinations across Africa were represented during two days of robust speed marketing sessions.
The highly regarded INDABA speed marketing sessions connected local trade and international hosted buyers, while the Speed Marketing sessions gave buyers easy access to South African SMME’s, who are already established in the South African Domestic market.
This year, INDABA 2015 is expected to contribute around R144 million to the city and support around 500 jobs.
Did you attend INDABA this year? What did you think?
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