How online payments are helping visitors rediscover SA

According to recent data from the South African Minister of Tourism, Patricia de Lille, more than 5.8 million people visited the country last year and more are expected in the coming years.

Travel has rebounded healthily from the pandemic and is expected to keep growing by an estimated 7.6% annually. Growth like this has been fuelled, in part by the combination of South Africa’s weak currency, when compared with many countries in the global north, and the ease that online payments give travellers.

The convenience of online payments has not only simplified the booking process but has also instilled new-found confidence in travellers as they embark on their adventures.

Michael Puffett, Senior Business Development Manager at Profitroom Africa, says: “The beauty of online payments is the fact that it`s not just about convenience it`s about safety too. Travellers can now make themselves less susceptible to theft and fraud. Furthermore, by offering travellers multiple payment options from credit cards to digital wall hotels can also amplify their booking potential. So, it is a win-win for everyone.”

Lee-Anne Singer, Chairperson of South African hospitality association FEDHASA in the Cape, says: “It is encouraging to see local and international travel improve so much. Visitors this year spent more than R25 billion (€1.2bn) and it looks as if that number will only continue to increase. Having a safe and convenient digital payments infrastructure is a key part of that growth.”

Safe, secure, convenient

One of the primary reasons for the popularity of online payments in the South African travel landscape is the stringent security measures employed by travel websites. Encryption technologies, reinforced by multi-layered security protocols, are deployed to safeguard users` sensitive financial information. This ensures that travellers can confidently complete transactions without the worry of data breaches or fraudulent activities.

Premium booking platform for hotels and resorts, Profitroom, has recently teamed up with digital payment specialists, Callpay, to enhance the safety, security, and convenience of online payments for travellers. As part of this collaboration, Profitroom plans to integrate scheduled token payments on selected payment gateways. This token will allow travellers to schedule payments on a specific date, such as seven days prior to check-in.

Andre Knobel, Head of Operations at Callpay, adds: “Thanks to industry-leading encryption standards we have been able to create an incredibly safe digital payments ecosystem that blends safety with convenience. This makes South Africa an appealing place to visit as international travellers can have the peace of mind that their data is secure.”

Partners in payments

The success of this combination has led to Profitroom and Callpay joining forces in a move that will help bolster the online payments landscape.

Puffett concludes: “With a shared vision of fostering innovation and bringing value to our client bases, partnering with Callpay aligns perfectly with what we want to be able to offer our clients. Payment gateway solutions have often presented difficulties for some of our clients but with our new partnership, those problems are set to become a thing of the past.