Tourism sector expecting to do well in Oct as level 1 kicks in

South Africa has been severely restricted by the UK keeping the country on its red list in efforts to improve an industry already crippled by COVID-19.

City of Cape Town Mayco member James Vos (right) launched a tourism initiative at Kirstenbosch Gardens on 8 September 2021. Picture: Kaylynn Palm/Eyewitness News

JOHANNESBURG - The Department of Tourism has anticipated an influx of tourists from this month with the relaxation of lockdown restrictions.

President Cyril Ramaphosa has placed the country on adjusted alert level 1 from Friday.

The tourism sector is one of the industries that has been hardest hit by the COVID-19 pandemic. Eighteen months into the crisis, the situation continues to evolve, and the outlook remains uncertain.

READ MORE: UK to review SA's red list status within next 2 weeks - Tourism Dept

South Africa has been severely restricted by the UK keeping the country on its red list in efforts to improve an industry already crippled by COVID-19.

The government is pushing to vaccinate to 70% of adults by December.

The department on Thursday said it had already started seeing improvement in certain sectors of the industry.

“Restaurants are beginning to pick up, I think they picked up by 17% quarter on quarter and that includes July, August and September. We expect the numbers to go up dramatically in the next 10 to 15 days. What you will see in October and November are big numbers because of the of the school holidays moving a little bit around,” said spokesperson Blessing Manale.

Manale said more would be done to restore the once thriving tourism sector.

Download the Eyewitness News app to your iOS or Android device.