The Durban Tourism Business Awards is the brainchild of Durban Tourism which is the eThekwini Municipality’s marketing wing mandated to position the city as the destination of choice. The Awards traces its roots back to 2021. This year, they will be hosted for the third time with the core aim of encouraging excellence, innovation and healthy competition within the local tourism sector thus positioning destination Durban utilising quality products.
The purpose of these awards is to recognise the businesses who have shown resilience whilst encouraging
others to constantly explore innovative ways in which they can adapt to the dynamic conditions that
influence our industry globally.
Due to the COVID 19 pandemic, businesses have been decimated and we saw for the first time, the industry’s turnover reached an all-time low. An example, for the festive season of 2020, (1st December to 31st January), our projections were sitting at an average of 45% occupancy rates in all regions in Durban.
The idea is to utilise this platform to ensure that Durban remains the destination of choice for new and repeat visitors, intra-provincially, domestically and when borders open, keeping Durban at top of mind for our international visitors.
The Tourism Awards happen at a time where we are starting to see a glimmer of hope, especially to the tourism and hospitality businesses, as we have recently entered adjusted level 1 lockdown regulations.
The relaxing of lockdown regulations by our government has meant that we are able to gradually re-open our economy and save jobs. We are under no illusion about the negative impact that the Covid 19 pandemic will have on our economy, and as such, we have already put measures in place to mitigate and cushion our businesses against this. The negative impact of this pandemic on our City’s economy is staggering and we are acutely awake to the fact that this is probably going to get worse before it gets better.
Furthermore, we are encouraged by the fact that all social partners in our City have committed to working with us in order to realise the objectives of this economic recovery plan.
Most importantly, we want our partnership with the sector in delivering the awards to be viewed as one of the efforts aimed at advancing the economic recovery agenda.