We now find ourselves in the peak tourism period with large numbers of people visiting our city’s attractions.

The reality is that if we don’t all take the necessary measures now to contain this health crisis, the visitor economy could suffer even worse long term damage.

We realise that these new restrictions make it difficult for some establishments to operate sustainably, but if we all do our part in reducing the spread of the virus over the next few weeks, these could possibly be lifted.

The visitor economy is everyone’s business. Tourism is the economic lifeline for many businesses in Cape Town and supports thousands of jobs.

We call on locals and visitors to take responsibility to stop the spread of COVID-19. All of us, businesses, residents and tourists, need to change our behaviour and adhere to safety precautions so that we can remain open for business.

If we all work together, we can do wonderful things. We’ve done this before when we faced Day Zero and we can do it again.

In this way, tourism can help bring about economic recovery, just like many times before.

The safety of our people and our tourists must be our priority. Our shared goal must be to flatten the COVID-19 curve urgently, so that these new restrictions can be lifted and we can once again focus on rebuilding this vital industry.

A few months ago we put together the Tourism Task Team. Its aim was to get industry through these tough times, while also focusing on our future prospects. It enjoys high level support from across the sector as well as our official destination marketing organisation, Cape Town Tourism.

I am pleased to say that we are constantly implementing measures to drive the various stages of recovery and readiness, as well as campaigns to stimulate supply and demand for specific key source markets such as domestic and international travel.

I trust that these initiatives will help tourism flourish in the challenging weeks and months ahead, within the framework of strict COVID-19 protocols.

Visit the Cape Town Tourism website for information on things to do and places to visit, including details on the campaigns and programmes available.

We need to ensure continued compliance of all COVID-19 protocols across the tourism value chain for the safety of our visitors and locals as well as employees and clients.

The City has also established a compliance hotline where the public can report outbreak events or non-compliance by establishments. The number is 021 444 3582.

Now more than ever we must pull together and keep each other safe. We will bounce back stronger than before.

Let’s do it right.  Let’s do it for Cape Town.

To view Alderman Vos’s message on tourism and flattening the curve, click here.

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