Tourism Grading Council Introduces New Discounts
From February this year, the Tourism Grading Council of South Africa (TGCSA) will be administering this programme and introducing attractive new discounts to bring new players into the system while incentivising existing members to maintain their grading status.
The programme was introduced by the National Department of Tourism (NDT) in 2015 to encourage more accommodation establishments and venues to become graded, while empowering emerging players and accelerating the transformation of the sector.
“We welcome this important oversight role entrusted to us by the department, which will further help remove the barriers – chiefly, cost – that may be preventing particularly smaller businesses from becoming graded,” said Sisa Ntshona, CEO of South African Tourism.
“We hope the attractive discounts will incentivise them to become a member of the TGCSA family and enjoy the many benefits of being graded, from enhanced visibility by being listed on the Grading Council’s website to its extensive Basket of Benefits. The public will benefit from having more star-graded options to choose from, and the tourism businesses themselves will now find it more affordable to be graded and become a formal part of the tourism ecosystem.”
The TGCSA allocates star gradings to establishments based on their service offerings, providing local and international visitors with an internationally benchmarked assurance of quality.
The pilot phase of the programme, which forms part of the department’s Tourism Incentive Programme, offered rebates on the grading assessment fees paid to the TGCSA. The rebate system will now be replaced by an upfront discount on assessment fees as part of the TGCSA’s improved online grading application process.
The changes mean that graded establishments can save up to 90% of their membership fees for a period of three years if they meet programme criteria (such as tax and BBBEE compliance) and are Tourism Levy South Africa (TOMSA) members. The 1% TOMSA levy collected by accommodation and meetings establishments is used to augment South African Tourism’s annual budget allocation to market South Africa.
For more information on the project, visit
Nelisiwe Yengwa Operations Manager TGCSA 011 895 3000 firstname.lastname@example.org
Mputle Seloane Programme Director NDT 012 444 6429 email@example.com