South Africa’s tourism losing over 18 million USD daily without international tourists

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SABI SANDS, SOUTH AFRICA - MARCH 29: Tourists in a safari vehicle watch a cheetah during a game drive on March 29, 2015 at the Sabi Sands private game reserve in the eastern province of Mpumalanga, South Africa. Sabi Sands is a 65,000 hectare reserve, pioneered by local landowners in the 1950's, and shares an open border with the world-renowned Kruger National Park. It is home to the Big 5 of wildlife and is in particular well known for its leopard sightings. Visitors to the park must stay at the 23 unique game lodges, day visitors are not allowed, and are taken on twice daily guided safaris by armed rangers in open jeeps, something that is strictly prohibited in neighboring public Kruger National Park. (Photo by David Silverman/Getty Images)
SABI SANDS, SOUTH AFRICA – MARCH 29: Tourists in a safari vehicle watch a cheetah during a game drive on March 29, 2015 at the Sabi Sands private game reserve in the eastern province of Mpumalanga, South Africa. (Photo by David Silverman/Getty Images)

South Africa’s tourism industry was losing over R300 million (18.4 million U.S. dollars) daily due to the lacking of international tourists, said Tourism Business Council of South Africa (TBCSA).

“It’s a large sum of money we are losing. There’s little activity that has happened since the re-opening of borders,” TBCSA CEO Tshifhiwa Tshivhengwa told Xinhua on Wednesday.

While borders were reopened on October 1, tourists from some European countries and the United States are barred due to high levels of COVID-19 cases there.

“People who were coming through have canceled their bookings due to high-risk list,” said Tshivhengwa, accommodation figures were down more than 80 percent.

Statistics South Africa estimated that accommodation alone lost more than R7 billion between March and July which was during the lockdown.

He said tourists from countries not on the high-risk list such as China and Japan usually make their bookings at this time of the year, but he was not sure if they would still come in their numbers in 2020.

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