Service Delivery within Tourism

Ugu South Coast Tourism (USCT) promotes high quality service standards within the tourism industry on the KZN South Coast.

According to the latest visitor satisfaction survey, conducted during Summer 2018, our visitors rate the destination’s service very good. USCT aims to continually improve visitor satisfaction and to uphold service excellence within the local tourism and related industries. Towards this project, USCT performs various activities, including training and information sharing, research and monitoring, stakeholder relationship building and engagement sessions. Visitors also contact USCT with any feedback or complaints, when necessary, which the organisation then further investigates and uses as learnings for future improvements. Visitor books at Visitor Information Centres, as well as owned channels, also allow visitors to share the quality of their experiences, to overall improve service levels.

Responsible and Sustainable Tourism

Ugu South Coast Tourism has a responsibility to the environment and local tourism businesses and communities to promote responsible and sustainable tourism development practices. These practices in turn contribute to the future of a destination, especially one such as the KZN South Coast, where natural resources are a key tourism asset.

Ugu South Coast Tourism pledges to promote the UNWTO Global Sustainable Tourism Standards and the organisation’s Responsible Tourism guidelines, which include:

  • Driving the conservation of natural and cultural heritage
  • Encouraging the adoption of sustainability practices for doing business (energy, water usage, waste management practices)
  • Working towards creating jobs and alleviating poverty in communities
  • Creating awareness on the protection of children in tourism

The KZN South Coast currently boasts 7 permanently managed Blue Flag beaches, which is a feather in its responsible tourism cap.

Tourism Grading

The official star grading of tourism establishments with the national grading authority, the Tourism Grading Council of South Africa (TGCSA), is paramount and a key focus area for Ugu South Coast Tourism (USCT) in 2019.

Grading of the more than 500 accommodation establishments within the KZN South Coast destination is important as it talks to the high quality standards USCT promotes, as well as visitor satisfaction in terms of service standards expected, when booking accommodation, and delivered during stay.

In April 2019, TGCSA introduced their new grading categories and processes, as well as a new aspirational 5-star Premium level, aligned to international best practice within the hospitality industry, brand new categories of Small Hotels, Boutique Hotels and Apartment Hotels, as well as new subcategories, see below:

  • Formal Accommodation – Hotel; Small Hotel; Apartment Hotel; Boutique Hotel
  • Guest Accommodation – Guest Accommodation; Country House; Guest House; Bed and Breakfast
  • Backpackers and Hostels – Backpackers and Hostels
  • Venues – Venues; In-Hotel Conference Centre; Conference Centre; Convention & Exhibition Centre; Events Venue; Historical Venue; Function Venue
  • Caravan and Camping – Caravan and Camping
  • Self-Catering – Self-catering Accommodation; Self-Catering Exclusive; Self-Catering Shared
  • Game/Nature Lodge – Nature Lodge; Game Lodge

USCT is partnering with TGCSA to enable grading of KZN South Coast establishments. Within the KZN South Coast there are currently more than 70 graded accommodation establishments.

Grading-Image

Tourism Infrastructure

Currently the tourism infrastructure on the KZN South Coast region is well-established, with the destination boasting a centrally located airport, Margate Airport; major road network and scheduled shuttles making all tourism amenities and attractions easily accessible and conveniently close; more than 500 accommodation establishments, shopping centres and multiple and diverse attractions and activities throughout the region. The destination boasts 56 beaches, including 8 permanently managed Blue Flag beaches.

Ugu South Coast Tourism is addressing Tourism Infrastructure, which talks to the attractiveness and appeal of the KZN South Coast destination, in the following areas:

  • Accessibility – air and ground transport
  • Hospitality Services – accommodation, conference venues, restaurants, entertainment facilities, etc.
  • Tourist Attractions – coastline, natural environment, museums, cultural diversity, galleries, parks, etc.
  • Municipal Support Services – beautification, cleanliness, road conditions, signage, water & electricity, communication networks, health services, safety & security, safe & clean beaches, etc.

Tourism Awareness

Tourism Awareness programmes aim to develop and build citizen loyalty to the destination. The following are key aspects thereof:

  • Encourage a sense of civic pride about the destination
  • Create ambassadors and advocates of the destination
  • Raise awareness about the destination’s attractions and diverse experiences
  • Strengthen relations with local tourism stakeholders

Ugu South Coast Tourism has several projects that address this developmental need, from creating tourism awareness at schools or involving communities in tourism awareness drives to using local radio stations and newspapers to promote tourism awareness.

The more aware residents are of the importance of tourism to the region, the more they will look after their tourism assets and the better the quality of the visitor experience.