Johannesburg is set to be the most popular destination city in Africa for the fourth year, according to the 2016 Mastercard Global Destinations Cities Index, with Cape Town and Durban coming in third and fifth respectively.
The city is expected to welcome 3.6 million international overnight visitors in 2016, a 6.2 percent increase on last year’s 3.39 million visitors. Cairo in Egypt is the second most visited African city with 1.5 million international overnight visitors followed by Cape Town (1.4 million visitors), Casablanca in Morocco (1 million visitors), and Durban (831 000 visitors).
Of Johannesburg’s expected international overnight visitors, 373,000 will travel from London in 2016. Harare (294,000), Frankfurt (233,000), Maputo (185,000) and Paris (163,000) round out the list of the top five cities that send visitors to Johannesburg. Only 18% of Johannesburg’s international visitors are from outside the Middle East and Africa region.
“Tourism remains an important driver of South Africa’s economy, and the steady rise in visitor numbers indicates how the City of Gold’s fascinating mix of iconic attractions is proving ever more compelling to today’s international traveller,” says Mark Elliott, division president, South Africa, Mastercard. “Visitor spend is an increasingly important source of revenue for the city’s hospitality, retail, transport, sports and cultural sectors.”