The STPP in collaboration with the International Committee of Tourism Film Festivals (CIFFT) will bring the unique film festival to Africa. Film festivals are a growing international phenomenon that provides critical market access to outlying tourism destinations while at the same time providing tourism revenue for towns where the festivals are hosted. Due to their level of exposure, film festivals are becoming an indispensible tool for exposing attractive (but previously unknown) destinations to a broad spectrum of tourists, including film producers . Film festivals create critical links between tourists and the communities they visit, providing future tourism development opportunities within those communities.

“One minute of video has the same value and impact as 1.8 million words – Dr James McQuivey (Forrester Research)”.

 (Read More On GDP Contribution)

In 2016/17, the film industry contributed R5.5 billion to the South African GDP, and created 21 656 jobs (ref. Economic impact of the South African Film Industry report – National Film and Video Foundation). The commercial filming industry contributes R1.5 billion to the GDP. During periods of filming, the film industry uses many tourism facilities including restaurants, transport and accommodation over extended periods. The film itself becomes a catalyst for tourism to the areas where the film was produced.

 (Read More On Festival Aims)

The International Tourism Film Festival Africa (ITFFA) mainly aims to contribute to the development of domestic and international tourism while encouraging the growth of the local film industry. To promote South Africa and Africa as tourist destinations, the ITFFA encourages short film productions that showcase South African and Africa as tourist destinations and expose the continent to international film makers. Mutually beneficial links will be created between the tourism industry and the film industry, as shown in table 1.


FILM TOURISM and DIGITAL MEDIA MARKETING are niche tourism industries, which are stimulated by the screening of destinations via film, television and online videos. According to research done by the National Department of Tourism (University of Pretoria, 2017) , there has been an increase of travel to popular filming destination, contributing to the growth of film tourism. South Africa is becoming an increasingly popular film tourism destination.

The film industry is deemed a “ as a mass cultural phenomenon” as strong linkages have been shown to with the tourism industry in the form of film tourism.”Due to its flexibility and diversity it has a direct link to destination development across the geographic landscape. Film also has the advantage of having an added multiplier effect of advancing other creative industries which in turn can advance destination development….if South Africa can successfully develop and escalate this perceived profile of being an affordable, technically proficient and diverse and flexible scenic location at an international level, more film-makers will make it their film destination of choice”. (University of Pretoria, 2017, p. 12).

According to a study published in by TCI Research (2018), 80 million travellers choose a destination based on TV series and movie locations. This study reveals that the number of people travelling to a destination after seeing it in a movie or series has doubled over the last 5 years.

Visual content has the power to instantly capture ones attention and hold onto it and video doubly so. It has the ability to tell a story and show experiences that people can connect to. Video is one of the most powerful influencers in the decision making process as it creates a
faster emotional connection than any other channel. It is a critical tool for marketing Tourism: 92% of mobile users share videos (Invodo.com and mobile screens account for 40% of global watch time on YouTube.

“Video is an important storytelling tool to allow audiences to experience destinations in a unique and personal way. It is a dynamic journey that exposes viewers to places from the comfort of their homes – before making the leap to visit.” – Candace Nelson, Digital Marketing Coordinator, West Virginia Tourism.

Film and video creates a new link to tourism in response to the culture shift in consumers interest towards creative industries, especially audiovisual arts. (Spanish Film Commission 2019, Fitur 2019)


As such the programme incorporates environmental, cultural, heritage and social criteria, economic best practice, community resilience, universal accessibility and service excellence.

The STPP is a solutions-driven organization, and promotes mass scale change across the industry by working with local, regional, provincial and national public and private stakeholders to form strong collaborative partnerships.

The STPPs programmes are aimed at delivering mind-set changes, training, education, upskilling, market data and specialized projects and programmes that provide solutions that assist the tourism sector to overcome barriers to sustainable growth and development.

The STPP works through extensive networks and partnerships to influence change from the top down and the bottom up. The programme offers a variety of interventions towards achieving its vision of becoming the most impactful mass sustainable tourism implementation programme.