8 May 2014

Durban gets ready for INDABA 2014

The city of Durban is ready and waiting for exhibitors, buyers and visitors to the annual tourism INDABA – Africa’s top travel show.

Durban, KwaZulu-Natal The coastline of Durban

‘We have a long-term view of the future of INDABA as the most influential and valuable African travel trade show. We are confident that the number of exhibitors from other African destinations will grow over the next few years. We look forward to near-full African representation on the exhibition floor in the medium term.’ – Thulani Nzima, CEO of South African Tourism

INDABA 2014 is just around the corner, and Durban (eThekwini) is poised to welcome guests to one of the largest tourism marketing events on the African calendar.

INDABA is an annual event which takes place at the Inkosi Albert Luthuli Convention Centre (Durban ICC) and the Durban Exhibition Centre. This year the show takes place from Saturday 10 May to Monday 12 May. The event showcases a wide variety of South Africa's best tourism products, and attracts buyers and media from all over the globe.

This year, INDABA will also have a strong pan-African focus, over and above the SADC countries that have been regular INDABA exhibitors for the past 15 years. This year, the following destinations will be exhibiting: Angola, Benin, Botswana, Burkina Faso, the DRC, Kenya, Ethiopia, Lesotho, Madagascar, Malawi, Mauritius, Mozambique, Namibia, Nigeria, Réunion, the Seychelles, Swaziland, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia and Zimbabwe and, of course, South Africa.

The CEO of South African Tourism, Thulani Nzima says, 'We have a long-term view of the future of INDABA as the most influential and valuable African travel trade show. We are confident that the number of exhibitors from other African destinations will grow over the next few years. We look forward to near-full African representation on the exhibition floor in the medium term.'

Nzima says INDABA is the 'engine room' of travel trade marketing for the continent, and points out that there continues to be a strong interest in South Africa and African destinations from buyers and media around the world, many of whom will be attending INDABA.

One of the fun aspects of INDABA 2014 is the return of the bloggers to #MeetSouthAfrica at INDABA 2014. Following on a from a hugely successful campaign at last year's INDABA, SA Tourism is once again hosting top bloggers from around the world to #MeetSouth Africa. 

Fourteen bloggers have been travelling around South Africa, experiencing unique aspects of the country. Among the bloggers are Melvin Boëcher (Traveldudes), Matt Karsten (expertvagabond.com), Caspar Diederik (StoryTravelers) and JD Andrews (earthXplorer.com), to mention just a few of the international and local bloggers on board. Last year's campaign saw over 219-million impressions of the #MeetSouthAfrica hashtag, and already the Twittersphere is buzzing with this year's bloggers telling their South African stories.

An exciting new addition to INDABA 2014 is the TechZone – an exciting space for premium digital service providers in the travel industry to meet exhibiting delegates and buyers. Travelstart, WAYN.com, TripAdvisor, Expedia, Springnest and NightsBridge will all be exhibiting at the TechZone.

This year, INDABA will touch on South Africa's 20 years of democracy, and celebrating the country's unique heritage and culture as well as a multitude of tourist attractions, is definitely on the cards. For many international delegates attending INDABA, the pre- and post-tours provide an opportunity to explore the highlights of Durban and the province of KwaZulu-Natal, as well as the rest of South Africa. Of course, the beautiful Durban weather, gorgeous beaches and warm welcome from the locals are added benefits of any visit to the city.

Here's to a great INDABA 2014!