Workcation and luxury trends will lead tourism recovery


The much-anticipated WTM Africa event in South Africa’s Mother City, Cape Town has officially come to an end, and it has been absolutely electric. How wonderful it was to see old friends face-to-face once again, celebrating the resilience of our industry and looking forward to the revival that’s clearly on the horizon.

Cape Town’s CTICC was buzzing with travel professionals looking to unlock the ideas set to shape the world’s dreams and plans for the future of travel. Here’s a recap of the show highlights:

The long-stay business traveller and the luxury traveller will lead the recovery for tourism to Africa in 2022. This is according to a travel review presented by ForwardKeys at WTM Africa.

Luis Millan, Head of Research at ForwardKeys, explained that long-stay travellers have shown the most resilience over the past months. Next in line has been the luxury, high-end market, with travellers willing to spend more on premium services to Africa.

Millan said that whereas global markets have relied heavily on inter-regional travel, the situation for Africa is very different. He explained that African tourism is driven mainly by long-haul travel, with the top three source markets currently leading the recovery for Africa being France, the US and the UK.

Interestingly, African tourism performed above the global benchmark in 2021. In 2021, arrivals to Africa were down 64% compared to 2019 as opposed to 74% internationally. Global recovery picked up pace in 2022, and arrivals for Africa are currently only 33% down compared to 2019.