Social media platforms are becoming fashionable tools of communication as the world continues to globalise with tourism stakeholders operating in Bulawayo tapping into the growing sector.

Information communication technologies (ICTs) are taking over traditional marketing tools and recommendation networks and collaborative travels now the new styles to deal with mass tourism.

Bulawayo city’s publicity association spokesperson Mr Moreblessing Tshuma said this new marketing trend presents them with a chance to come up with innovative ways of marketing the city.

“We have realised that it’s quite easier and faster for us to market Bulawayo as one. We have realised that some of our members don’t have websites of their own. Some have but are not functional, so what we have done is to give them a page on our website. They only feed us with information and we help upload and connect them,” he said.

Some tourism players operating in the region said government should move with speed in establishing a one stop shop for tourism players while castigating the duplication of roles characterising the industry.

Foundation is essential for players in the industry to maximise ICTs with Director for School of Hospitality and Tourism Mr Innocent Nezungayi urging training institutions to have ICT policies for the sector to make meaningful contributions towards the country’s vision 2030.

“ICTs are the future. As training institutions we also train students to become industrialists. Some people have invested in virtual tourism and are making a decent living and what we are saying is that institutions must embrace this new trend,” he said.

Early last year, government launched the country’s ICT policy to direct Zimbabwe’s economic development through a coordinated use of ICTs and now the onus is on specific sectors to utilise the guiding document to enhance development.