Indonesian Tourism responds to Millennials and wins Award

8 October 2019

"The challenge to the tourism world is not getting easier. It is not only the global economic slowdown, but also a change in the traveller’s lifestyle which are very dynamic. Indonesia has all the capacity to serve the millennial market, from the digital infrastructure to a variety of special-interest tourism options”, said Mr Salman Al Farisi, Ambassador of the Republic of Indonesia in Pretoria, at the Indonesian Tourism Sales Mission in Johannesburg, South Africa on 3 October 2019.

Photo: Mr Salman Al Farisi, Ambassador of the Republic of Indonesia in Pretoria addressing the Sales Mission

The Indonesian Embassy in Pretoria, the Ministry of Tourism and ITPC Johannesburg in collaboration with Singapore Airlines invited 25 travel agents and business partners in South Africa to brief them about the latest updates from Indonesia.

Although Indonesia has consistently become one of the favourite destinations for travellers from South Africa, the number of tourists recorded is still lagging behind as compared to destinations like  Australia, New Zealand, the US and Thailand.

In BPS's records, there were 38,073 travellers from South Africa in 2017. The number increased to 41,962 people in 2018. During the first half of this year, there were around 19,691 South Africans who visited Indonesia and with peak season still coming, the number of visitors will reach an all-time high this year.

In his remarks, Ambassador Farisi observed the growing of the special-interest tourism phenomenon driven by millennials born in the 80s and 90s. This generation is consumptive, social media-savvy and well-aware of the importance of personal branding. The Ambassador believes that Indonesia can seize the market opportunities, given the fact that this country has a number of sporting events, as well as international-scale music festivals.

The events include the Java Jazz Festival, the Djakarta Warehouse Project (DWP), the Mount Bromo Jazz, as well as sporting events such as the Jakarta Marathon, Tour de Singkarak, or Borobudur Marathon all of which could be attractive tourist packages. This includes halal tour packages.

The target of the Government of Indonesia is to build the tourism sector as the nation's core business. The government is targeting foreign exchange earnings from this sector to shift revenue from the oil and gas sector and CPO. This year, foreign tourist arrivals are targeted to reach 18 million people and produce no less than Rp. 17 billion.

In order to realize this target, the Government continues to encourage the "10 New Balis" Project, to diversify Indonesia's tourism which is still concentrated in Bali. To this date, Bali is still a major destination, comprising around 40% of the total number of foreign tourists.

As one of the keys to success, the government is boosting infrastructure development around tourist sites. In the case of Lake Toba, Borobudur and Mandalika, the government built or rejuvenated the provincial airport and developed new access to tourist destinations.
The guests of the Indonesian Tourism Sales Mission in South Africa were entertained by  Legong and Peacock Dance by dancers who flew in from Jakarta. The Indonesian Embassy in Pretoria and the Ministry of Tourism expect a surge in the number of tourists from South Africa after this business forum.

Indonesia Wins the Best Travel Destination Award at Johannesburg Tourism Show

"We are confident to say that Indonesia has become a favourite tourist destination for South African travellers. Through this exhibition, we want to say to South Africans that Indonesia has hundreds of other tourist destination choices that are no less interesting than Bali. I believe that the potential to bring more tourists from South Africa is wide open” said Ambassador Salman Al Farisi opening the Indonesia stand at the Gauteng Getaway Show in Johannesburg, South Africa that took place from 4-6 October 2019.

The Indonesian Pavilion attracted many visitors during the three day exhibition. The Indonesian Embassy in Pretoria, ITPC Johannesburg, and the Ministry of Tourism ornamented the Indonesian Pavilion with a Hindu Temple Gate, and images of tourist destinations in Indonesia such as Labuan Bajo, Borobudur, Bromo and Lake Toba. Which are priorities of the Ministry of Tourism which is now promoting the "10 New Balis" Projects.

Visitors to the exhibition were regaled by traditional dances such as the Balinese Legong Dance, East Kalimantan Hornbill Dance and the West Java Peacock Dance and were invited to participate in the dances. They also had the opportunity to taste Indonesian specialties such as rendang, yellow rice, and peanut crackers.

"We also display bicycle products from PT. Polygon International which got a quite positive response from bicycle lovers in South Africa. We hope that Indonesian outdoor activities products, not only bicycles, could be accepted into the market and will soon penetrate the South African market, "said Anggun Paramita Mahdi, Head of ITPC Johannesburg.

The synergy between ITPC Johannesburg, the Indonesian Embassy in Pretoria and the Ministry of Tourism resulted in an award for the Indonesian Pavilion, namely the "2019 Gauteng Show Award of Excellence" as the "Best Travel Destination".

Indonesian Embassy in Pretoria and ITPC Johannesburg