Africa Travel Week
Sabine Lehmann

Behind the Mic with Sabine Lehmann

With more than 25 years experience in the tourism and visitor attractions management industry, Sabine has deep insight into the changing nature of tourism and visitor attractions. Sabine was the MD of Table Mountain Cableway, and currently serves on a number of attraction boards. 

Sabine is the founder and CEO of CURIOSITAS. A specialist attractions and tourism futures consultancy. The consultancy merges the art and science of visitor attraction management with future thinking on the future of leisure and tourism. She also founded and was President of the African Association of Visitor Attractions and Experiences (AAVEA), the only attractions association in Africa. 

Sabine holds an MBA and a Masters degree in Futures Thinking. She is on the International Journal of Tourism Futures editorial board, a member of the Association of Professional Futurists, and a research associate of the Institute of Futures Research at the Stellenbosch Business School. Sabine is also on the Government Relations Sub-Committee for the global attractions association, IAAPA. 

Q&A with Sabine 

What are you hoping could ignite enthusiasm on what you’re going to speak about? (without giving away too much) 

The way we manage visitor attractions should constantly be in step with our visitors’ changing needs. Attractions globally have had to respond to changing trends accelerated by the pandemic. These changes were heading our way in 2019 – but now they are here. Are you ready?  

What have you missed with regards to face-to-face contact in the events speaking space?  

The energy that an audience creates and the opportunity to robustly debate new ideas over coffee.  

How did you come to do what you do, tell us a bit about your career advancement?  

I found my way into my specialist area and visitor attractions whilst MD of Table Mountain Cableway. I realised that no one focussed on this sector of the tourism economy. I have made it my mission to research and connect with others in the attractions industry. I then realised that the changing nature of how we view leisure and leisure time would influence our industry and completed an MPhil in Futures at the University of Stellenbosch to understand how we can think about the future of tourism and leisure.  

Based on your five senses, what are you looking forward to most at the show this year: 

  • See: the joy of unplanned chance encounters  
  • Taste: the success of our industry in the future 
  • Feel: the buzz of conversation  
  • Hear: the silence when there is a collective ‘aha’ moment of insight 
  • Smell: our brains burning as we find solutions 

What makes Africa Unique?  

Our young demographic. An enormous opportunity if we are able to harness it wisely.  

What is the first thing you will do once you set foot in Cape Town?  

I live here, but I try to see the city through fresh eyes daily.  

Looking back as past events that you have been to, what business connection/relationship stands out that made it truly worthwhile?  

Serendipity of chance encounters. 

Find me at WTM Africa: 

Topic: Pricing Strategies for Attraction Admissions – Past, present and future trends 

Date: 11 April 2022, 12:30 – 13:15 

Stage: Travel Forward Theatre 

Africa Travel Week

Africa Travel Week (ATW) focuses on inbound and outbound markets for general leisure tourism, luxury travel, LGBTQ+ travel and the MICE/business travel sector as well as travel technology. Shows include: ILTM Africa, WTM Africa, EQUAL Africa, ibtm AFRICA, Travel Forward, Sports & Events Tourism Exchange and African Tourism Investment Summit.