Kruger Lowveld Tourism Newsletter – 6 March 2018

Author: | Published by KLCBT on at 11:29:41 | Last Updated On: 7 March 2018
  • VAT increase a double-edged sword for tourism in SA;
  • Entries are open for the Innibos National Craft Awards;
  • Sponsors needed for the Lydenburg MTB race and Trail run…

VAT increase a double-edged sword for tourism in SA

According to an article published on Tourism Update, the announcement of the increase in VAT from 14% to 15% by Finance Minister, Malusi Gigaba, in his 2018 Budget speech, has caused mixed reactions in the South African tourism community. “With a strengthening rand and an incremental increase on VAT, we may well observe an impact within the South African inbound tourism sector in 2018. At face value, the increase may seem negligible, however, when viewed in contrast to the bigger picture, the impact on the bottom line is significant,” says Commercial Manager for Federal Airlines, Nik Lloyd-Roberts.  While some are concerned about the logistical implications of integrating the increase into existing travel bookings, and who will carry the cost – the service providers or the customers – others are moving ahead with strategic management and integration plans. 65% to 70% of overseas tourism is contracted to trade, with a general 12- to 18-month advance-booking process. This makes the question of who will cover the increase in rates/fees already quoted and accepted, a valid concern. The recalculation of figures on packaged products such as transport/hotel accommodation/domestic flights is highly complex, with VAT being applied differently to each element. A VAT-tacked package in South Africa could include the following: · Transport of fare-paying passengers: VAT exempt (no VAT chargeable) – no VAT impact · Hotel accommodation – 15% VAT · Domestic flights – 15% VAT The Southern Africa Tourism Services Association (Satsa) has indicated that it will publish a set of guidelines to advise the industry on the best way to manage the VAT increase. We have our concerns, as does the tourism community as a whole, when considering the time and logistical implications of implementing the 1% increase,” says CEO, David Frost. “But we will release a set of guidelines to the market to advise on the best, most practical ways to understand the implications of the increase, and how to adapt systems and procedures to take this increase into account.” Read the full article.

Entries are open for the Innibos National Craft Awards

The winner of last year’s inaugural Innibos National Craft Awards, Thami Kitty, says that winning the competition generated much interest in his work. His range of intricately carved walking sticks impressed the judges enough for him to take first prize from among a host of world-class crafters. Crafters have until April 20, 2018, to enter this year’s competition. They need simply take a photo of their entry – next to a matchbox for size of scale, and either email it to or send it to 071 621 3597 via MMS or WhatsApp. There is no entry fee. Remember to include your name, the town in which you live and your contact details. Entrants who have not heard from the organisers within 30 days of the closing date must take it as given that they did not make the shortlist for final judging. Sixty entries will be shortlisted and these will form part of an exhibition to be held in Mbombela during the Innibos National Arts Festival from June 24 to 30, 2018. The finalists must be available to attend the awards evening on Sunday, June 24, at which the winners will be announced. The winner of the Platinum Award will receive R50 000, the Gold Award winner will pocket R20 000 and the Silver R15 000. There will also be merit awards for the Best Emerging Craftsmen, along with sound financial advice to grow their business. In addition, a Craft Retail Apprenticeship with Tourvest Destination Retail will be bestowed on one of the winners. Entries in the disciplines of Ceramics, Beadwork, Wirework, Wood, Jewellery, Paper, Fabric Painting and Printing, Quilting, Leatherwork, Pewter, Glasswork, Embroidery and Mixed Media are invited. For information, please contact Jan Bhuda on 083 719 1731 or e-mail John Anthony Boerma. Like the Facebook page for updates.
Sponsors needed for the Lydenburg MTB race and trail run

The thrid Annual Lydenburg Heritage MTB Race and Trail Run will take place on 24 March 2018. What started as an initiative to get more people to Lydenburg now unites communities and mines in surrounding areas. Sponsorship opportunities are available! For more information, email Charlene Coetzee.