Online Tourism Growing With Cell Phone Use In Africa

Online Tourism Growing With Cell Phone Use In Africa

From News24.

Growing cell phone use in emerging markets such as Africa and greater consumer confidence in online payments have led to the rapid increase in online travel sales, according to a report in News24.

Online travel and tourism is expected to see solid growth for the next five years with Africa and the Middle East leading the way, said Damian Cook, CEO of Nairobi-based E-Tourism Frontiers.

Online travel will also benefit from Africa’s growth in cell phone use, Cook said. Mobile penetration across Africa is expected to reach 80 percent this year and smart phone ownership is around 17- to 19 percent, according to the 2012 African Mobile Factbook, Cook said in the report. Online mobile travel sales will be very important for domestic and regional travel bookings, he said.

Cook also quoted statistics from online travel research company PhoCus Wright and  Euromonitor.

South African Tourism plans to bring together experts on online tourism with representatives from Facebook, Tripadvisor, Expedia and Twitter at a September summit in Cape Town. They will take a closer look at mobile use during the summit. “That will give the travel trade the opportunity to focus strongly on which social media campaigns, channels and online business opportunities work well in Africa and for their own markets,” Cook said in the News24 report.