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Implications of risk adjusted lockdown level three for the tourism industry

The National Coronavirus Command Council has announced that the whole country will move to Level 3 of the Risk Adjusted Strategy from 01 June 2020. Further amendments have been made to the measures pertaining to Level 3 effective 25 June 2020.

All domestic and international travel as well as interprovincial movement remains prohibited except for people are travelling for the purposes of work or the specific provisions stipulated in the legislation. Domestic flights for business purposes will be available between OR Tambo, Cape Town and King Shaka International Airports. Lanseria Airport will be added when the port health capacity has been arranged and the government has certified it open.

Car rental companies are allowed to operate.

All hotels and establishments – except accommodation establishments not formally accredited and licensed, such as private homes for paid leisure accommodation - are allowed open if they are providing accommodation for people travelling for the purpose of business permitted under Level 3, international tourists who remain in South Africa or are appointed as quarantine facilities. No accommodation establishments are allowed to open for leisure purposes. Establishments will no longer require letters from the Minister of Tourism to operate. 

Restaurants, take-aways, and food establishments are allowed to open for delivery and collection of food. Sit-down meals are allowed with strict adherence to all health protocols and social distancing measures. Liquor is not allowed for on-site consumption. All restaurants with liquor licences are allowed to sell alcohol for takeout and delivery during the legislated hours from 09:00 to 17:00 on Mondays to Thursdays. 

Professional services such as tourist guides, tour operators, travel agents and tourism information officers including training of nature guides and other related services are allowed to come back into operation.

Public and private game farms are open to travellers from the same provinces for self-drive excursions from 06:00 to 18:00. Hunting and gaming activities are allowed. The following gatherings are allowed under strict adherence to all health protocols and social distancing measures:

  • Conferences and meetings for less than 50 people, excluding those who participate through electronic platforms, and are restricted for business purposes
  • Casinos provided that the number of persons allowed in the casino is not more than 50 percent of the available floor space, with patrons observing a distance of at least one and a half metres from each other
  • Museums and galleries

All restaurants, fast food outlets and coffee shops; hotels, lodges, bed and breakfast, time share facilities, resorts and guest house, conference and meeting venues including casinos will provide detailed training for their staff and inform staff of their responsibility to advise the employer if they are tested positive for Covid-19 or have been in contact with someone who is Covid-19 positive.

Click here for a copy of the Risk Adjusted Regulations applicable to Level 3

Click here for a copy of the directions issued by the National Department of Tourism


Who is allowed to travel under Level 3 of the risk adjusted strategy?
What domestic travel is allowed under Level 3 of the risk adjusted strategy?
When will the other airports be allowed to operate?
What documentation must be provided by people who are travelling for business?
How will the tourism sector be controlled to ensure that people are travelling for business and not leisure?
Who will be allowed to advertise and take bookings?
What establishments are allowed to operate?
What health and safety protocols must establishments put in place?
What tourist facilities remain closed under Level 3?
What are restaurants allowed to offer under Level 3?
Are game reserves are allowed to open?
When will South Africa open its borders for international travel?
When will the tourism industry be allowed to take bookings for international travellers?
How will the Tourist Guide Relief Fund work?
Are conferences allowed?
What restrictions apply to casinos?

UUPDATE:  27 March 2020, Let's work together during this touch time

The Tourism Grading Council of South Africa is extremely grateful for your cooperation as our country and the world locks down. This is an incredibly challenging time for us all especially in the tourism sector as we are bearing the brunt of our guests’ inability to travel. We urge you to abide by the measures announced by South Africa’s National Command Council.  Darryl Erasmus, Chief Quality Assurance Officer, has some pertinent messages for you as we commit to providing you with documented information you can make use of during this unprecedent time.


UPDATE: 22 March 2020, Central Traveller Registry for accommodation establishments

As per the Immigration Act of 2002, all hotels, motels and accommodation establishments must keep a register containing details of all persons who are provided with lodging or sleeping accommodation.

South African Tourism (SA Tourism), the Tourism Business Council of South Africa (TBCSA) and the Federated Hospitality Association of South Africa (FEDHASA) are coordinating efforts to create a central portal where all accommodation establishments across the country can load the information of the local and international guests staying at their establishments.

It is imperative to ensure the health and safety of all South African citizens and tourists travelling within South Africa in containing the spread of the virus.

In light of the Act, SA Tourism, TBCSA and FEDHASA have requested all establishments to send through booking data to a central repository dating back to the last 14 days.

The benefit of a single repository allows for accurately locating tourists within the country, their movements and to facilitate contact tracing for positively confirmed cases and assist tourists to make the necessary arrangements for their wellbeing.

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