Tourism Ambassadors trained in the Garden Route
Plett Tourism joins forces with the Francois Ferreira Academy, Skål International and Bitou Municipality to train Tourism Ambassadors in the Garden Route
The hospitality industry is the lifeblood of countless coastal havens and Plett is no different. Guest satisfaction depends largely upon the level of service establishments are able to offer. To this end, the Tourism Ambassador Programme was hosted locally in March, with great success.
“The response from the new Plett Ambassadors and the Plett attractions to this initiative from the Francois Ferreira Academy and Skål International, has been beyond expectations. We look forward to this enthusiasm and improved knowledge contributing to our visitor’s experience of our beautiful town. Congratulations to all involved.” – Cindy Wilson-Trollip, Plett Tourism Manager.
The three-day course was aimed at training staff employed in shops, hotels, petrol stations, restaurants and other relevant tourism-based products, activities and services, to enable them to assist with information about Plett. The course was presented by Debbie Thomas, a lecturer at the Academy, and covered aspects such as:
- The Travel and Tourism Industry in general
- South African Food Heritage, with an emphasis on local foods and dishes
- General knowledge such as animals and birds in the area,
- Garden Route attractions, natural, manmade and cultural, and Plett attractions and festivals
- Plett restaurants, location and types of food
- Plett hotels and accommodation establishments, location, price bracket and types of accommodation and customer service
- A 4-hour tour of some of Plett’s attractions
Students who completed the three-day course were required to write a short test upon completion and subsequently received a certificate and a Plett Ambassador Badge, with the Plett logo, from the Francois Ferreira Academy. In addition, they are required to do a one-day refresher course, every six months, to keep them up to date with changes, new attractions and such.
The course will be introduced to towns and cities across the Garden Route. Manager of Plett Tourism, Cindy Wilson-Trollip said that Plett Tourism is pleased to support a programme which encourages locals to be well-informed Plett Ambassadors.
Feedback from the participants of the course was very positive indeed and the general consensus was that they are looking forward to the next refresher course. In fact, there was not one negative comment!
“I would like to thank you and the Academy and all involved, for the opportunity granted to Martin.
I can tell you that it has made a world of difference to him. He is ecstatic – his best day was yesterday, and believe it or not, but one of his highlights was the fact that for the first time in his life he travelled in an elevator in the Beacon Isle. He thinks this is magic! I discussed his work and books with him and am assured he will now be much better equipped to carry out his duties in the Guest House industry, on a higher level. Thank you.” Harry De Villiers, HT DE VILLIERS ATTORNEYS.
ABOUT SKÅL INTERNATIONAL: Skål is a professional organisation of tourism leaders around the world, promoting global tourism and friendship. It is the only international group uniting all branches of the travel and tourism industry. Its members, the industry’s managers and executives, meet at local, national, regional and international levels to do business among friends. The first Club was founded in 1932 in Paris by travel managers, following an educational tour of Scandinavia. Skål International today has approximately 15,000 members in 400 Clubs throughout over 90 countries. Most activities occur at local level, moving up through National Committees, under the umbrella of Skål International, headquartered at the General Secretariat in Torremolinos, Spain. Skål International is governed by an Executive Committee of six members, elected by delegates to an annual General Assembly, held during the World Congress, hosted by a different country each year. This allows members first-hand observation of the travel and tourism potential around the world. For more information visit https://www.skal.org/en/about-skal.
ABOUT FRANCOIS FERREIRA ACADEMY: The Academy provides training excellence in Culinary Arts and Hospitality Management, and are located in George. Full time students gain practical experience working for 6 months in the industry in many 5 star establishments, learning under leaders in the industry. The training staff is are lead by Principal Francois Ferreira, acclaimed chef, former Head of the State President’s Household and author of several cookery books. He is assisted by Vice Principal Denise Lindley, business entrepreneur and wine connoisseur. They have strong ties with the Cape Wine Academy, the South African Chefs Association the Chaine des Rotisseurs, and the Nelson Mandela University. For more information visit http://francoisferreira.com/.