Sojern announces expansion into South Africa | The Planner

Following the lifting of Covid-19 restrictions in South Africa less than a month ago, Sojern has announced its entry into country with a brand new trends report.

It was to be expected that tourism activity in South Africa would quickly ramp up after Covid-19 restrictions were lifted on 22 June 2022. Sojern, a digital marketing platform built for travel marketers, is positioning itself to take advantage of the increased activity and has announced its foray into the country.

“South Africa was hit harder than many countries by Covid-19, the travel industry in particular across the country was brought to its knees. In the aftermath of the Omicron variant in late 2021, the country is now in a fantastic position to capitalise on global travel recovery and Sojern is launching at a brilliant time to help travel marketers remind travellers why South Africa is one of the greatest countries on earth,” explains Stewart Smith, Sojern’s MD for the Middle East and Africa.

Making an informed decision

At the same time as announcing its entry into South Africa, Sojern released a trends report in which it makes some interesting comparisons.

In summary:

–     Flight bookings are picking up and in May 2022, flight bookings were up 25% on their 2021 levels;

–     Some destinations are recovering faster than others: Destinations like Kimberley and Bloemfontein are up YoY, however, are still a long way off their 2019 booking and search volumes;

–     Flight prices are volatile: COVID-19 caused a drastic drop in inbound flight prices, however international fares into South Africa are now in fact higher than their 2019 levels;

–     Domestic travel is still booming: 49.9% of flight bookings to South Africa originate in South Africa, demonstrating how crucially important domestic travel is. The UK is 2nd, at 9.3%, with the US ranking 3rd at 5.4%, followed by Germany (4%) and Zimbabwe (2.5%);

–     How far in advance are people booking? Most domestic travel is immediate, while overseas visitors are booking their December holiday trips to South Africa already. Interestingly, international travellers are booking further in advance in 2022 than they did in 2019, whereas domestic travellers are booking closer to their departure dates than they did pre-pandemic.

“With South Africa remaining a top travel destination for global travellers we see lots of opportunities for growth throughout 2022. We look forward to building Sojern’s operations and supporting the local travel industry in its rebound,” commented Stewart.

For more findings, you can access Sojern’s full South Africa Travel Trends report here.

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