travel and tourism
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South Africa’s Tourism Minister Derek Hanekom launched Jurni, an innovative public-private venture that will revolutionise and transform South Africa’s Travel and Tourism Industry at Africa’s Travel Indaba this week.

“This is a global first. There is no project like this anywhere else in the world,” said Andy Hedley, MD of Amadeus Southern Africa. “This initiative has brought the entire travel industry together.”

“Jurni will be a pioneer when it comes to giving our industry access to accurate and centralised tourism data in South Africa, which will empower us to make significant and informed decisions for the benefit of our sector,” said also Minister Hanekom.

A first-of-its-kind Travel and Tourism Data Management Company, Jurni will deliver unbiased, consolidated and comprehensive tourism data that will equip tourism businesses with valuable insights to inform their business strategies. At the same time, Jurni will develop a booking tool that will improve access of small and medium tourism enterprises to the global market as well as a visitor portal that will better showcase the South African tourism product.

“Tourism data and information sources in South Africa are disparate and do not provide intelligence at a granular level to inform South Africa’s travel and tourism sector. With the launch of Jurni, existing data sources will be consolidated, as well as digital platforms developed to harness missing data and plug data gaps identified by the tourism sector.

“These data sources will be merged into one comprehensive, consolidated and unbiased tourism data hub for the benefit of the entire tourism sector,” explained Dr. Nomvuselelo Songelwa, CEO of Jurni.

This initiative has been made possible thanks to investment by Amadeus. Jurni is the official rebranding of the National Tourism Visitor Information System (NTVIS) initiative, which was launched by Amadeus IT in conjunction with the South African Department of Tourism and the Thebe Tourism Group at Indaba last year.

Amadeus’ investment was intended to respond to the real needs of South Africa’s travel and tourism industry. As such, the participation of private and public sector in the initiative was key, explains Hedley.

Amadeus IT Group, says Hedley, is committed to transformational, sustainable and inclusive growth of the global travel and tourism sector. “As an invested partner of South Africa’s travel and tourism sector, we see the NTVIS, and Jurni – its Travel and Tourism Data Management Company – as fundamental to achieving this growth here.”