Wide reach of SAA and Ethiopian Airlines beneficial to Seychelles tourism by STB
The “wide reach" of South African Airways ( SAA) and Ethiopian Airlines is being used to tap into new markets in Africa, has said David Germain, the Seychelles Tourism Board’s ( STB) Director of Marketing for Africa, the Americas and the Middle East.
Speaking at STB's mid-year review in June, Mr Germain said that the African market looks very promising.
Seychelles Tourism Board’s Director of Marketing for Africa, the Americas and the Middle East' Mr. David Germain.
He noted that as of the second week of June 2013, Seychelles had received just over 11,000 visitors from the African continent, which is a 14% hike on the corresponding period of last year. Slightly less than half of that number had come from South Africa, which has provided 5,000 tourists, representing a 13% increase on 2012.
Mr Germain said STB had selected four new African markets for special attention – Nigeria, Angola, Botswana and Namibia – and that the "wide reach" of South African Airways and Ethiopian Airlines, which both have several weekly flights to Seychelles, will be particularly helpful in tapping into these markets.
He noted that all those countries are rich in minerals or petroleum and a significant segment of their population are opting for vacations outside the continent.
Mr Germain noted that the Indaba trade fair in May this year was particularly beneficial with the participation of many African and American operators.
He also noted that STB's marketing strategy, with more PR activities, is paying off in terms of more visibility for Seychelles. He said the destination had been featured on some TV channels and in 73 articles.
More press and media visits to Seychelles are planned for this year and some road shows are planned to target special regions.
Mr Germain highlighted that the competing markets for the South African tourism market remained Mozambique, Zanzibar and the Maldives. He added that Mauritius was getting too commercialised and not as appealing to South African vacationers as before.
On the South America market, Mr Germain said the Seychelles' share market is still small, with only 360 arrivals in mid June from Brazil, where STB appointed a tourism representation in the Brazilian economic powerhouse of Sao Paolo in April. He added that the market has strong potential and SAA can help tap into that with its daily flights to the Brazilian cities.
It is to be noted that STB is also targeting Argentina, Chile and eventually Paraguay.
Mr Germain said that the recent code-sharing agreement between Air Seychelles and SAA would mean easy access to the islands. On North America, Mr Germain said that four airlines – SAA, Ethiopian, Emirates and Etihad – which have daily flights to different US cities, would provide easy connections to Seychelles.