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FNB data points to a strong rebound of the tourism sector

FNB data points to a strong rebound of the tourism sector
13-12-22 / Shelly Nxumalo

FNB data points to a strong rebound of the tourism sector

Johannesburg - Tourism was one of the most impacted sectors during the peak of the lockdown between 2020 and 2022. However, data from FNB points to a strong recovery and growth prospects look promising due to the much-needed growing trend of local tourism.

Thokozani Dlamini, FNB Merchant Services CEO says, we have seen an increase of 55% in turnover on our merchant services platform for the overall tourism industry coupled with a 17% year-on-year increase in transaction volumes.

"An increase in travel spend in 2022 is further supported by the hospitality and tour operators within our base showing significant participation, contributing 35% and 16%, respectively, to overall tourism turnover. The total increase in travel spend is driven largely by the increase in airline travel with total spending up from R4 billion to R8 billion in 2022 thus far," adds Dlamini.

The Hotel Accommodation Income Statistics for September 2022 released by Stats SA showed the Hotel Sector's income levels making further progress post-lockdown recovery. On a year-on-year growth rate basis, total hotel sector income was substantial, with a 118.6% increase in September, which was a renewed acceleration on the already strong growth of 58.5% in August.

According to Stephan Claassen, FNB National Sales Head, “This points to a strong rebound of the sector as we have seen a 72% increase in travel turnover and a 71% increase in transaction volumes which points to optimistic signals ahead of the festive season. This also suggests that short stays and breakaways coupled with experiences are popular trends in the local markets, particularly in the Coastal regions.”

He adds that “the impact of the tourism sector during the previous years has negatively impacted businesses and the industry. However, hospitality and travel, together with popular tourism-linked companies, have benefited with increased growth rapidly re-approaching pre-Covid levels in some areas.” 

“Also, with local tourism booming, as consumers explore different parts of the country, growth is set to contribute positively to this growing trend. However, there is also a broader responsibility in elevating the informal economy, which has previously impacted communities positively in holiday destinations. There is also a need to drive a message of support for SMEs, particularly the micro survivalist entrepreneurs in the sector’s value chain,” says Claassen.

FNB’s refreshed brand positioning of 'change needs you' is best expressed through the call to action it is leading to support the local tourism sector. The Bank is calling all its #TheChangeables customers to prioritise safe travel during the festive season and focus their spending locally to support SMMEs, to contribute towards changing the fortunes of micro and small businesses, to help reverse the losses incurred during the COVID period. FNB’s marketing efforts and activations will highlight these opportunities and remind consumers of the importance of collective action to support the sector.

“The sector has begun seeing an increase in transactional activity, which aligns with the Bank’s efforts to create ways that make it easy for customers to pay through innovations on its FNB App and for merchants to get paid safely through its Speedpoint range and Speedee solutions,” concludes Dlamini.

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