The challenges of promoting domestic tourism in Durban.
Domestic tourism is the cornerstone of economic development processes in Durban, which is the centre of attraction in the province of KwaZulu-Natal, however there was a decline in domestic tourism between 2009 and 2014. This study was conducted to determine whether domestic marketing is effective enough to attract domestic tourists to travel to Durban, as well as to determine if there could be other factors that are contributing to the decline in domestic tourism. The literature shows that the government and tourism bodies are mostly focusing on developing and promoting international tourism instead of domestic tourism due to their high spending patterns. The purpose of the study was to identify challenges of promoting domestic tourism in Durban and establish the role of Durban Tourism and their contribution to domestic tourism development and marketing. Tourism promotion is the key strategy for the success of a destination, which can result in community development, economic empowerment and poverty alleviation. Durban Tourism, as the marketing body for Durban, has a responsibility to develop and promote Durban locally and internationally. The aim of the study was to determine the challenges of promoting domestic tourism in Durban. This was a qualitative study where purposive sampling was used. In-depth semi-structured interviews were conducted with 15 Durban Tourism employees in the marketing, tourism services and research departments, and the data were analysed using thematic analysis. The key findings of the study indicate that the perception of a high crime rate in Durban, inadequate domestic tourism promotion within provinces, and the high rate of unemployment in South Africa, are the major challenges that hinder the growth of domestic tourism. The implication is that Durban Tourism needs to invest more effort into marketing the city more efficiently to domestic tourists, because they are reliable throughout the year.