Darryl Erasmus on Tourism Grading

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Darryl Erasmus, the Chief Quality Assurance Officer at the Tourism Grading Council South Africa, shares the body’s goals for 2017 and beyond, and updates us on the grading process and new initiatives in the pipeline.

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Darryl Erasmus has been the Chief Quality Assurance Officer at the Tourism Grading Council South Africa since 2015, and prior to that worked across travel, tourism, and ICT industries across the country. He shares why tourism grading is beneficial for establishments, and what we can expect in the next year.

What’s new at the TGCSA in 2017? What trends in the tourism industry are you using to implement and innovate within the organisation?

The TGCSA has a number of projects underway. The largest and most comprehensive is the triennial review of our Grading Criteria which is currently in its final stages. We are also in the final stages of a detailed research piece into the perceptions of Grading and the TGCSA. The TGCSA in collaboration with the National Department of Tourism have also streamlined the Grading Support Programme, which allow for up to a 90% discount on grading fees.

Take us through the details of the proposed Premium 5 Star Grading.

The proposal of the introduction of a Premium 5 Star grading is part of the proposed Criteria changes to the grading system that is currently with the Ministry for approval.  As soon as approval is received, we will be in a position to share much more information about this development.

Why is it important for tourism and hospitality venues to be graded by the council? What are the benefits of having a star grading?

Star Grading in South Africa is voluntary, therefore the 5 300-odd establishments that have met our stringent minimum standards and quality criteria, are commended. They are the pinnacles of the hospitality industry as they contribute toward positioning South Africa as a quality assured destination of choice for both business events and leisure tourists. Star grading is a market positioning tool used by establishments to communicate the quality and service offering travellers can expect at their establishment.

Continue reading the interview with Darryl Erasmus in Issue 7:

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