African economies drive on tourism growth
Travel remained among the key growth drivers of Africa’s economy, contributing 8.5% of the GDP in 2018; equal to $194.2 billion. In accordance with a recently available report, this growth record placed the continent because the second-fastest growing tourism region in the global world, with a rise rate of 5.6% after Asia Pacific and against a 3.9% global average growth rate.
Africa received 67 million international tourist arrivals in 2018, to record a +7% increase from 63 million arrivals in 2017 and 58 million in 2016. This gradual increase is related to the ease and affordability of travel especially within the continent, with spending among domestic travelers accounting for 56% in comparison with 44% international expenditure. Additionally, leisure travel remains a significant element of Africa’s tourism industry, taking on most 71% of the tourist expenditure in 2018.
The implementation of the African Continental Free Trade Area (ACFTA) is likely to further boost domestic travel. To realize the entire potential gains shall require cooperation from all industry players. Governments must be ready to eliminate visa requirements for African nationals planing a trip to their countries. Ministries along with other responsible partner organizations should create campaigns which will promote their local travel destinations and tourism offerings to attract more regional travelers.
While pay-at-hotel remained the most used mode of payment among travelers. Card transactions gained popularity with +24% within exactly the same period.
On another hand, using mobile money and travel agencies decreased by -11% and -20% respectively. The mobile, as a way to obtain traffic accounted for an archive of 74% in 2019 from 57% in 2018, regarded as a total consequence of the increased mobile penetration on the continent. The mobile industry contributed $144 billion to Africa’s economy (8.6% of total GDP) in 2018, up from $110 billion (7.1% of total GDP) in 2017.
Highlights from the Aviation Industry
While Africa’s passenger traffic increased from 88.5 million in 2017 to 92 million in 2018 (+5.5%), it’s world share was only 2.1% (down from 2.2% in 2017). The report attributes this trend to high competition from other regions including the Asia Pacific. Africa’s share is predicted to cultivate by 4 however.9% annually on the next twenty years.
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Improved visa facilitation in major tourism countries in Africa remains a significant boost to both tourism and aviation industries. For example, Ethiopia’s visa relaxation policies coupled with improved connectivity as a regional transport hub placed the national country as Africa’s fastest-growing travel country, growing by 48.6% in 2018 to be worth $7.4 billion.
“Most African government leaders are actually focused on making travel between African countries more and easier affordable. An example may be the creation of the East Africa Visa program which allows travelers to use for a visa online before visiting Uganda, Rwanda, and Kenya. Such collaborations are visionary.
In terms of top airlines generating probably the most revenue in the African airspace, the report sites Emirates near the top of the list; earning over $837 million with popular flights from Johannesburg, Cairo, Cape Town, and Mauritius. Africa’between April 2018 and March 2019 was from Johannesburg in South Africa to Dubai s most profitable air route, generating $315.6 million in revenue; while state-owned Angola Airlines and South African Airways were the only real two African airlines that managed to get to the most notable 10 Africa’s highest revenue air routes within exactly the same period. Respectively, both airlines generated $231.6 million flying from Luanda to Lisbon and $185 million flying between Cape Town and Johannesburg.
The African Tourism Board brings African destination together in continent-wide cooperation.