Minister encourages South Africans to explore and support South Africa’s own tourism products and destinations
19 Aug 2010
South Africans should continue living the spirit of the 2010 World Cup by supporting all South African sports teams, whether at a national or international level. This is according to National Tourism Minister Marthinus van Schalkwyk.
The Minister was speaking today at the Ipelegeng Community Centre in Soweto, where he celebrated the launch of South African Tourism’s “I’m a South Africa fan” campaign.
“By being the loudest and proudest of cheerleaders during the successful 2010 World Cup, we showcased how passionate South Africans are about all things sports and African. It is among others thanks to sports that South Africa recently won the reputation as one of the world’s premier leisure destinations. And sports is one of the crucial elements of our tourism offering that will help ensure that this reputation endures and tourism continues to grow in order to make its vital contribution to the economy, job creation and development,” Minister Van Schalkwyk said.
The “I’m a South Africa fan” campaign aims to encourage South Africans to continue flying the flag, cheering for their sports teams at sporting events, and being the welcoming, hospitable hosts they have proved themselves during the 2010 FIFA World Cup.
“The success of our industry is rooted in the participation of all South Africans in tourism. The best way for South Africans to be better and more welcoming hosts is to travel their own country, whether it is travelling from Cape Town to Johannesburg to watch a rugby or football match, or going on a family holiday. This way you get to give praise where it is due, gauge service levels, and offer constructive criticism where it is warranted to improve service excellence in the industry,” the Minister said.
Minister Van Schalkwyk undertook a brief tour of Soweto on the back of a motorbike as a guest of the Soweto Sopranos Bikers Club. Together with fellow bikers, he visited the Soweto Hotel, Orlando Towers, former President Nelson Mandela’s home in Vilakazi Street, and the Ipelegeng Community Centre in Jabavu.
Soweto is one of the most exciting, historically rich tourism destinations in South Africa. It also boasts a range of diverse tourism offerings. This campaign encourages South Africans to take a ‘sho’t left’ and to visit our own gems.
On Saturday, the Springboks meet the New Zealand All Blacks for their Tri-Nations rugby clash at the FNB Stadium outside Soweto. Minister Van Schalkwyk encouraged the nation in general (and rugby fans in particular) to support the Boks in this important event.
“Soweto has opened its heart to rugby fans already. Now, as the Springboks play the first rugby match ever at the ‘Giant Calabash’, I am certain that this unique and fascinating part of Johannesburg is going to erupt again in national pride, patronage and support for the Springbok team. Please do come early on Saturday so that you can taste and enjoy the great fare that Soweto has to offer,” the Minister concluded.
For further information, contact:
Ms Sandisiwe Gugushe
South African Tourism
Tel: 011 895 3000
Cell: 073 126 9128
Tel: 012 310 3631
Cell: 082 771 6729
Issued by: Department of Tourism
19 Aug 2010
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