Cape Town is open for business and ready to welcome all visitors
18 September 2020
STATEMENT BY THE CITY’S MAYORAL COMMITTEE MEMBER FOR ECONOMIC OPPORTUNITIES AND ASSET MANAGEMENT, ALDERMAN JAMES VOS
From my various site visits this morning, I can confirm Cape Town is bouncing back. The airport is ready to welcome back all visitors safely, our iconic attractions are welcoming tourists and our restaurants are back in business.
This morning I met with officials at our award-winning Cape Town International Airport, together with MEC David Maynier, for a high-level meeting on safety innovations and protocols as well as our plans to boost travel and trade to help get our economy back to business. I was very pleased to hear that the three airlines currently flying to Cape Town, Airlink, FlySafair and Mango, now have a combined 314 domestic flights a week, which is an increase of 74% month on month.
According to information from TravelStart, bookings on the route between Johannesburg and Cape Town has increased by an impressive 190% over the last month. Wesgro’s Air Access, which the City funds to boost flight connections to Cape Town, has also found that traveller confidence is returning as load factors (i.e. the number of passengers divided by capacity of aircraft) have increased from 59% in June to 87% by the first week of September.
This will be a lifeline for the tourism and related industries such as food, beverage, accommodation and transport services. To ensure we keep our destination open, safe and healthy, I remind all visitors to wash their hands regularly, wear a mask in public and maintain social distance.
Cape Town has so much to offer and there is a reason that it has been voted the best city in the world seven times in a row. My next stop was to the iconic and stunning Cape Point, where I was joined by the City’s official destination marketing organisation’s CEO, Enver Duminy and Brett Hendricks, the chairperson of the Cape Town Tourism Board. We had the great pleasure of officiating at the reopening of the Cape Point Funicular (Flying Dutchman) and its restaurant and retail facilities.
I then headed to the most visited attraction in Africa, the V&A Waterfront, together with officials from the City’s Enterprise and Investment Department (E&I). To support local SMMEs in the craft and design space, the City provides funding to the Craft and Design Institute (CDI). At the V&A, I had the opportunity to visit the CDI’s shop in the Watershed to have a look at how they provide vital exposure, shop space and visibility to products made by our local crafts-people.
At the end of the day, the visitor economy is everyone’s business. That is why I will continue to implement proven strategies to help get our economy back to businesses and thriving.