Chinese tourism to Africa represents a great potential with South Africa leading the chart as the favourite tourism destination in the continent.
The Rise of Africa news website reported in 2015 that South Africa leads the graphic of 10 countries in Africa that are most successful in attracting Chinese tourists for holiday destination.
Tourists from China to South Africa, according to the website, are on a rapid growth year-on-year with the Chinese holiday makers favouring the country as their number one choice.
“The increase in Chinese tourists in South Africa is impressive and shows growths of more than 50 percent from one year to another. The development of Chinese tourism in South Africa is strongly due to the introduction of the direct flight between Beijing and Johannesburg,” said the website.
Then Egypt, Kenya, Cameroon, Senegal, Algeria, Angola, South Sudan, Mauritius and Zimbabwe respectively follow in the chart.
To show the significance of the Chinese tourists to South Africa, the Department of Basic Education is considering introducing Mandarin as an unofficial language in public schools.
The Department of Tourism on the other hand, has also sent 20 frontline tourism staff to China in 2016 to learn Mandarin.
This comes after the staff participated in an initial training course on Mandarin and subsequently awarded the certificates.
They were awarded by Minister of Tourism Derek Hanekom in a ceremony held in Johannesburg.
Hanekom said then that the language training will enhance the experience of Mandarin-speaking visitors and make their stay in South Africa memorable.
“The frontline people will help Mandarin speakers with making arrangements for travel, accommodation and sites to visit. The tourist guides will be able to tell the fascinating stories behind our sites better and the tourists will understand them better and spread the word when they return home,” said Hanekom then.
Based on a report published recently on Brand South Africa official website titled: Total Tourists Arrivals Excluding Transit Tourists, South Africa had 53, 6 percent of Chinese tourists who visited the country between January and October 2016.
About 98 814 tourists visited the country from Asia during that period compared to 64 340 who visited in the same period in 2015. The difference is 34 474 in total.