n African Journal for Physical Health Education, Recreation and Dance - Adventure tourism in South Africa : the case of bungee jumping

Volume 20, Issue 4
  • ISSN : 1117-4315


Although bungee jumping is a global phenomenon, Africa lags the world in terms of this particular sub-sector of adventure tourism, with commercial bungee jumping only taking place in Uganda, Zambia and South Africa. As South Africa's bungee sector is the most developed, research was undertaken in order to establish the nature of both the supply of, and demand for, this iconic form of hard adventure. The study found that bungee jumping stimulates local economic growth by generating substantial employment opportunities and spawning other adventure tourism activities and side businesses. Seasonality, combined with the global economic downturn has forced the operators to be entrepreneurially creative, in particular, to find ways of attracting more domestic tourists and day trippers. Thus, the financial base of bungee jumping in South Africa rests on domestic tourism. The demographic and socio-economic profile of the bungee jumpers is also presented, alongside factors which they identified as important with regards to the future growth of the industry. It is argued that a clean safety record and gold standard safety features could be adopted to expand the industry, as South Africa's commercial bungee jumping sector is globally competitive. However, the sector lacks official regulation and official safety standards, which is both a serious shortcoming and a hinderance to the development and growth of the sector.

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