How is electricity in South Africa affecting the tourism industry?


by Corlia Goosen

Company: Discover Africa
Telephone:  021 422 3498

The growth of the business sector and industry along with the population leaves electricity supply short in some parts of the country. An increasingly high demand creates high volumes of output providing South African’s with a grid that struggles to cope and unable to function crashes under pressure.

Comparing to electricity in Africa, South Africa is way ahead of the masses and leading the way.

Electricity in South Africa: Linking Coal and Tarrifs

According to Business, Public Enterprises Minister Malusi Gigaba said on Thursday 14 June, that the South African government is considering declaring coal a strategic resource, “We are engaged in discussions with the ministers of mineral resources and energy to secure the security of supply (of coal),” he said at Eskom’s annual results in Cape Town, shown to media in Johannesburg via video link.

“Coal is our biggest input cost, and filters directly into the tariff,” he said. “Our expectation for the following year is that coal goes up by a single digit. It is very important that we achieve that.”

Electricity in South Africa: How is it affecting tourism?

South Africa’s Mother City, Cape Town, a prime location popular with local and globetrotting tourists, expects to pay 11% more for electricity while Johannesburgers can expect an increase of 12% from the 1st July. In the year to March 2012, Eskom had seen coal prices increasing by 17%.

With such intense increases and more to come predicted on the horizon South African tourism is bound to take a knock with some travellers already reporting that South Africa is no longer the most cost effective vacation location on the map providing absolute value for money.

With electricity price hikes there is an increase in rates at hotels, lodges and guesthouses around the country along with the cost of domestic and international travel, the price of food and the cost of living.

However with plans in place to combat constant price hikes of electricity in Africa we can only hope to expect that the tourism industry sees money go further offering visitors to Africa more. The question is can we do it without supporting and subsidising fossil fuels?

Discover Africa’s tips for Tourists visiting South Africa
The South African electricity supply is 220/230 volts AC 50 HZ.
Most plugs are 15 amp 3-prong or 5 amp 2-prong, having round pins.
If an adaptor is called for, bring one with you or purchase one locally.
Majority of hotel have 110 volt outlets for electric shavers and appliances.
US-made appliances may need a transformer for adapting to electricity in Africa

Discover Africa’s savig tips:
Electricity is good for electronic devices but gas is more efficient for heating and cooking
Switch off lights and power points not in use when leaving the house or hotel
Soak beans, samp and other dry food overnight saving time and money
Leave unnecessary electrical appliances at home when on holiday
Keep the lid on the pot when cooking to conserve heat and energy
Boil only the water needed instead of boiling a full pot or kettle
Check that you close the fridge door and that it seals properly
Reduce the temperature of your geyser to around 55 degrees
Let meat thaw out on its own, avoid using the microwave
Replace lights and lamps with energy efficient globes
Skip the washing machine’s pre-wash cycle

For more information contact: call: 021 422 3498 or visit:

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