KZN tops tourism survey

Monday, December 7, 2009

Pretoria - KwaZulu-Natal has come out tops as the most visited province in South Africa.

According to the Domestic Tourism Survey 2008, the province of preference for trips in general was KwaZulu-Natal, which generated 20.6 percent of all tourist arrivals.

The province also had the highest proportion of overnight trips (22.7 percent), according to the survey, released by Statistics South Africa (Stats SA) on Monday.

Gauteng was the most visited province coming in at 24.4 percent, with regard to day trips.

According to the survey, the reasons for both domestic day and overnight trips were visits to friends and family/relatives in the six months prior to the survey.

The survey revealed an estimated 7.469 million trips were taken of which 2.252 million were day trips and 5.217 million were overnight trips.

With regard to modes of transport, the most frequently used forms of transport were taxis coming in at 8.860 million trips and cars at 7.532 million trips.

Taxis were used as the mode of transport to visit friends and family at 27.6 percent as well as to do shopping for personal use.

"Taxis were the mode of transport for more than half the trips when the provinces of destination were Eastern Cape (53.4 percent) and KwaZulu-Natal (51 percent)," said Stats SA.

Eating out at restaurants and cafes was a very popular activity for both day and overnight trips. According to the survey, an estimated 1.528 million people ate at restaurants and cafes on day trips, while 1.591 million people ate at restaurants while on overnight trips.

People aged 25-29 were also found to be most likely to travel while the two preferred destinations on overnight trips for leisure were the Western Cape with 47.9 percent and Mpumalanga at 21 percent.

Additionally most overnight trips lasted between one and three nights.

According to Stats SA in the Western Cape expenditure on day trips amounted to R187.674 million and for overnight trips to R1.397billion. In KwaZulu-Natal, expenditure on day trips was R731.303 million and for overnight trips R2.226 billion, which is approximately three times more than that for day trips.

When traveling outside the country, South Africans are more likely to travel on the African continent as opposed to further abroad.

"South Africans who travel to destinations outside the country's borders are more likely to go to other African countries rather than traveling further abroad," said Stats SA.

On the other hand, Mozambique was the preferred destination with an estimated 141 000 trips while the other most popular foreign destination was the United Kingdom.