19 February 2012

Jonty Rhodes to wave the South African flag in India

Famous cricketer Jonty Rhodes has teamed up with South African Tourism to promote the destination in India.

Jonty Rhodes and Minister of Tourism Marthinus van Schalkwyk

Jonty himself has volunteered to help us promote the destination in India given his passion for travel, adventure and South Africa. He is one of the best fielders in the history of cricket. India is a cricket-crazy nation and with Jonty’s support we want to connect with Indian travellers.
- Hanneli Slabber, South African Tourism country manager, India

Jonty Rhodes is known around the world for his prowess on the cricket field. After an incredible 11 years playing in the international cricket arena, he is now the fielding coach for the Indian Premier League Team, the Mumbai Indians, and widely revered all across India. It was recently announced that Rhodes has agreed to promote South Africa in India as a brand ambassador for South African Tourism.

India is a core market for South African Tourism and Rhodes is well-loved in India, making him the perfect 'brand ambassador' to promote South Africa as a travel destination.

Hanneli Slabber, the country head of South African Tourism in India, says Rhodes will do much to raise the profile of South Africa as a choice travel destination. 'Being a part of the Mumbai Indians team, Jonty has a great fan following in India and is extremely popular and loved cricketer.'

Slabber explains that, for South African Tourism, India is now a core market to attract travellers to South Africa. The numbers say it all: almost 75 000 Indian visitors travelled to South Africa in 2011 (18 percent up on the previous year’s figures).

She adds that South African Tourism couldn’t ask for a better brand ambassador: 'Jonty himself has volunteered to help us promote the destination in India given his passion for travel, adventure and South Africa. He is 1 of the best fielders in the history of cricket. India is a cricket-crazy nation and with Jonty’s support we want to build an engagement and connect with Indian travellers.’

Rhodes will be promoting the destination to the Indian market in various ways and via social media. Slabber says: 'Jonty will be travelling to South Africa to experience varied adventure activities, shopping, lifestyle, food in South Africa and will write down his experiences for us.'

Rhodes will be a writing a guide for Indian consumers, which should prove interesting reading. 'As the year passes, we want to work more closely with Jonty and promote the destination in India. Together, we want to highlight varied experiences that South Africa has to offer to Indian tourists,' says Slabber.