New set of Tourism Awards to award excellence of service

A new set of South African Tourism awards recognising excellence in the Tourism industry was launched by Minister of Tourism, Marthinus van Schalkwyk, at Indaba 2013 yesterday, 11 May.

These Lilizela Awards will recognise and reward tourism players and businesses who work passionately and with pride to deliver a world class product and service and whose delivery grows South Africa’s global destination competitiveness.  All graded establishments have automatically been entered in the Lilizela Awards that will honour the industry’s best graded establishments.

Establishments will be awarded according to a number of broad categories: Service Excellence, Emerging Entrepreneur, Tourism Responsibility and Sustainability, Universal Accessibility and the Minister’s Award.

  • Minister’s Award:  Recognises outstanding, unique, impactful people, events, organisations that have performed in a manner that urges the industry closer to tourism’s 2020 vision (to grow arrivals to 15 million and create 225 000 new jobs by 2020. Total direct and indirect GDP contribution target from R189.4 billion (2009) to R499 billion (2020).
  • Service Excellence:  How well tourism products are doing in this area. A large portion of the decisions for this award will be made based on guest feedback. Measurements have been put in place to allow the public to cast their vote. The Accommodation sector will be recognised during this first year, with the other service providers and operators to follow.
  • Emerging Tourism Entrepreneur of the Year Award (Eteya): This award recognises black owned SMMEs that have achieved notable success since starting up.
  • Universal Accessibility:  Facilities and services at accommodation establishments and venues that are accessible for people with disabilities, using the Tourism Grading Council of South Africa grading criteria which were introduced with the normal quality grading criteria back in 2010.
  • Sustainability Award: This award will recognise the business that best incorporates the three development and sustainability pillars into their business operating models and the Imvelo brand will be incorporated accordingly.

Van Schalkwyk said achievements in different areas should be recognised and the awards will be expanded to later include products and services across the tourism value chain.. He said, now tourism businesses in South Africa have something more to strive for in addition to profitability and a healthy, robust bottom line.

The five award categories will in time be extended to an eventual 18, the Minister added.

Th first overall winners from each category will be announced at a ceremony in September 2013. The awards will be preceded by provincial recognition awards to be handed out at provincial events.

Lilizela is an Nguni word which means to ululate: an act of congratulations when someone has done something well. 

News info courtesy of SAnews.gov.za 

(edited)

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