Ms. Ribeiro (Tourism Information Clerk) and Mr. Stroebel (First Secretary) promoting South Africa in the road show
The SA Embassy in Lisbon was on the road in April 2013 to promote South Africa as a holiday destination of choice among travel agents. The workshops were held in 3 cities across Portugal - Porto, Coimbra and Albufeira (Algarve) - and evoked good response from the tourism industry.
According to the press, as many as 135 travel agents attended the event in Coimbra, 103 in Albufeira (Algarve) and 310 in Porto. A quality crowd of 160 trade partners had already attended the road show in Lisbon during BTL (Lisbon International Tourism Fair) on 28 February 2013.
The SA Embassy in Lisbon has been using this annual road show to actively promote South Africa as a holiday destination of choice among Portuguese travel agents and updating them on the variety of experiences and products on offer across the destination. This is a unique opportunity to directly communicate with travel agents from different parts of Portugal and increase their awareness about South Africa as a destination with rich natural and cultural heritage.
Road Show in Coimbra
The road show further highlighted the assistance the Embassy can offer in terms of material and advice. Many agents were unaware that the Embassy had a tourism section and could assist them.
From the feedback received, it is interesting to note that more and more agents are getting familiar with South Africa as a destination.
The Mission also found that agents throughout the road show recognized us from previous years. Many mentioned that they receive our newsletter and expressed their congratulations on this initiative.
Finally, direct contact with agents has been important to remove any prejudices regarding the insecurity of the country. Unlike previous years, travel agents asked very few questions about this issue and pointed out the high cost of travel as the main obstacle for them to sell South Africa more.
Road Show dinner in Porto
Ultimately, the road show is expected to attract interest and awareness of South Africa’s tourism potential by travel agents in Portugal and result in upscale of sales volumes.