“While it’s not possible to predict the exact number of international tourists due to arrive in the City of Cape Town for the upcoming season, we estimate a slight increase from 2016.” During October – December 2016, the Western Cape saw approximately 450 000 international visitors over a three month period. During this time, international visitors to the province stayed an average of 10 nights.
Brueton continues “It is key to understand that, during the high season, visitor arrivals are spread across three months, and on average stay 10 days. In other words they are not here all at once. This equates to approximately 50 000 international visitors in the Western Cape at any given time.”
Even at the peak of the tourist season, international tourists on average add less than 1% to the overall population of the Western Cape. “If domestic tourists are added to the calculation, then tourists as a whole only add around 3.4% to the population of the Western Cape.”
Bruteon explains that this makes it highly unlikely that the influx of tourists will significantly impact water consumption. Adding that instead, as a major capital injection, tourism can be an important way to buffer the Western Cape’s economy in the face of impending, drought-induced financial pressure.