7 July 2014

7th E-Tourism Africa Summit to be held in Cape Town and Johannesburg

The E-Tourism Africa Summit will for the first time be held in both Cape Town and Johannesburg, making it accessible to a greater number of travel and tourism industry members.

Damian Cook, CEO of E-Tourism Frontiers. Damian Cook, CEO of E-Tourism Frontiers

The E-Tourism Africa Summit offers a unique networking space for our tourism industry to reconnect, share and learn about the latest online tourism and travel developments and technologies – Jan Hutton, SAT chief marketing officer

The world’s leading online tourism and travel experts will gather at the 7th annual E-Tourism Africa Summit to share the latest tools and trends in the online travel arena, and reveal how members of  the travel and tourism sector can best leverage social media to grow their businesses and improve the bottom line.

The summit takes place at the Cape Town International Convention Centre from 4-5 September 2014 and at the Museum of African Design in Maboneng, Johannesburg from 8-9 September 2014.

Damian Cook, CEO of E-Tourism Frontiers and creator of the E-Tourism Africa Summit, said more than 59% of travel is now being researched, booked and paid for online, contributing more than US$400-billion to global travel sales.

And according to Cook, a Nielsen report has revealed that in 2012 more than 200 000 travellers to South Africa booked their travel online generating more than R790-million for the South African economy.

'Ensuring the African tourism sector is partaking and benefiting from this fast growing space, is essential for the sector’s growth and survival,' he commented.

Confirmed speakers at this year’s summit include experts from Facebook, TripAdvisor, Expedia, Twitter, Google, Tripbod, Instagram, One Fine Stay and South African Tourism (SAT). There will also be a host of local and international speakers and travel bloggers who have not presented at the summit before.

A key topic on the agenda at this year's summit will be the ever-increasing use of mobile technologies in the travel space.

'According to a recent PhoCusWright study, seven percent of total hotel bookings in 2013 were made via tablet and mobile phones. That’s 12 times more than in 2010, and this figure is expected to rise to 20% by the end of 2014,' said Cook.

He added that one in five consumers booking with Expedia, book their travel via mobile (apps or mobile website), while the majority of Expedia’s customers use mobile devices to research elements of their booking.

Delegates at this year's summit can also look forward to more hands-on workshops, seminars and training sessions.

SAT is the title sponsor of the summit in Cape Town and Johannesburg, with the Gauteng Tourism Authority supporting the summit in Johannesburg.

Jan Hutton, SAT chief marketing officer, said SAT is very much looking forward to once again partnering with E-Tourism Frontiers for what will be a high-tempo, cutting-edge tourism marketing event. 

'The event offers a unique networking space for our tourism industry to reconnect, share and learn about the latest online tourism and travel developments and technologies. 

‘The role of digital marketing platforms is exciting, and essential for the long-term sustainability and growth of the tourism sector. The E-Tourism Africa Summit provides an invaluable opportunity to showcase local and global online solutions, partnerships and new innovations from the South African tech trade, from SAT and international providers,' she commented.

The cost of attending the two-day summit in either Cape Town or Johannesburg is US$385 per delegate. But if delegates register and pay before 31 July 2014, they receive a US$100 discount off the regular price.

For more information and to register, visit the E-Tourism Frontiers website.