Cape Town’s tourism industry took a knock with talks of ‘Day Zero’ and declining water levels, however hope has been restored as the City of Cape Town announced on Monday (September 17) that dam levels had improved by 0.9% over the last week to 70% storage capacity.
“This is indeed a welcome relief and positive sign for the future of tourism within Cape Town and South Africa,” says Collin Thaver, MD of Southern Africa 360: “It also shows the unity between the local community and the tourism sector, and their resilience to work together to reduce the negative impact of the situation.”
Enver Duminy, CEO of Cape Town Tourism, says the news released on Monday (September 17) is deeply encouraging, noting that last year on the same day, water levels were sitting at 37.5%.
The average water consumption for the past week declined from 526 million litres per day to 505 million liters per day.
Last week, the City of Cape Town announced that it would lower water restrictions and tariffs from Level 6 to Level 5, as of October 1 due to the encouraging dam recovery and the ongoing conservation efforts by locals.
“This relief is a result of a combination of factors, including alternative water sources coming online, the dams are filling up with seasonal rains and the actions of local in adopting water-friendly lifestyles at home and in business. We believe that visitors can enjoy a rip to Cape Town with very little disruption to their time here. This is a world-class destination that continues to garner accolades, a must-experience place that will delight.”
Thaver says he has started to note some positive signs with regard to bookings from December onwards, especially from traditional markets, with an increase in enquiries and bookings.
The City encourages its water users to continue conserving water to ensure that Cape Town’s dams recover adequately for the summer months ahead.
Duminy adds: “We ask that tourism businesses, locals and visitors continue to carry out daily activities in a water-conscious way that will contribute to sustainable tourism. This will continue to reassure the world that tourism activities continue.”