Cape Town - South African National Parks (SANParks) is making travel more affordable for locals by implementing new differential conservation fees for Table Mountain National Park gates (TMNP), which will take effect from 1 November 2018.
This means that locals will gain entry to select parks at a cheaper fee than international tourists.
SANParks General Manager for Strategic Tourism Services, Joep Stevens, says the aim is "to increase accessibility to South Africans, especially the sectors of society that do not traditionally visit national parks.”
The decision also comes soon after Table Mountain Cableway announced its new summer sunset hours with festive season specials designed for locals.
SEE: Table Mountain Cableway announces new summer sunset hours
Stevens says that the decision "is an effort to align TMNP fees with the rest of SANParks where differential fees were implemented as early as 2003".
"At the time the differential system was implemented, a benchmarking exercise was embarked upon comparing our conservation fees to those of reputable national parks locally, across Africa, and globally with rates that were set accordingly," says Stevens.
Differential conservation fees were not implemented in 2003 because of the complexity of processing visitors at the two key access points - Cape Point and Boulders. This process would have delayed entry into the parks - which are also high volume access points - as visitors have to provide proof of residence and/or nationality.
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According to SANParks, a new system is being sourced for these access points with the aim to reduce processing at the gates.
Permit details will be captured online before arrival by guests and operators, and SANParks says that "certain validation would take place for payment to be made before arrival".
New fees at Cape Point and Boulders
As of 1 November 2018 the standard conservation fees for Cape Point will be R300 for international adults, R150 for SADC nationals and R75 for SA residents, while for Boulders it will cost R150, R75 and R38 respectively.
"Besides the new access system currently being sourced, there are upgrades taking place at both facilities and SANParks believes that these two iconic destinations offer excellent value for money," says Stevens.
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