Background:   In 2002, the South African government introduced a national grading system which is presently the accepted quality/standards benchmark, operated by the Tourism Grading Council of South Africa (TGCSA). This system was modelled twenty years ago, based on similar grading systems of the UK, Australia and New Zealand.

Historical challenges of grading properties: Grading has depended on a single assessor perhaps staying one night, marking and checking off a list of factors and details, assessing a property as follows – to quote the Grading System….

  • 3 STARS – Very good quality in the overall standard of furnishings, service and guest care.
  • 4 STARS – Superior (excellent) comfort and quality. High standard of furnishings, service and guest care.
  • 5 STARS – Exceptional quality, luxury accommodation (on a par with best international standards). Highest standard of furnishings, flawless service, meticulous guest care.
While a property might provide 5-star quality service, yet chooses a modest or budget offering, the Assessor’s grading has historically had to default to grading the property at the 3-star level. Equally important; just because a property offers a world-class physical experience, does not mean their service quality matches that. The existing model takes no cognisance of what guests say.

2020 has materially changed everything and without explaining the obvious, or dwelling on what help you may or may not have received as a tourism property, the facts are:

  • Travellers need to identify a quality property when making their choice
  • Properties need tools to help manage themselves better across a variety of fronts

With that as the backdrop, we’re introducing an accreditation model across Africa. Addressing both aspects of the tourism experience:

  1. The service experienced together with
  2. The product you offer.
  • Tourism properties need to help customers understand that their product and service offering has been Visited & Verified
  • The region, which arguably offers the greatest tourism opportunities on the planet, derserves to be promoted collectively
  • Properties need a simple, cost effective tool that delivers value in order to address these points

That’s why we’re launching SoA, in association with     Africa’s leading reputation management tool.

How does it work?                                                                                                                     

Visiting your facility & Verifying your service excellence:

  • We believe it is impossible for an assessor to assess your property’s service excellence, with simply one visit (which you have anticipated)
  • We believe your customers are the best people to rate your service. Hence the various platforms through which they do this (e.g.. Trip Advisor,, GuestRevu, etc.).
  • We shall Verify these reviews – ensuring that what was said, is accurate.
  • Using a STANDARD measurement tool, along with available technology, we shall Visit the property. Working with you, the venue owner, or manager, we’ll ensure an agreed outcome. Matching what guests have reviewed with what your property offers – ensuring future satisfied guests.
Based on the Visited & Verified process, you will be awarded the appropriate The Seal of Africa

Do you have to be a GHASA Member to be Accredited and is accreditation compulsory?

No to both!  You can choose to become accredited, to be awarded the appropriate The Seal of Africa  or not!

  • The Visited & Verified Program, is entirely voluntary and based on delivering value
  • No contracts, no obligations


  • Guest House
  • B&B
  • Self-catering
  • Country House
  • Boutique Hotel
  • Hotel
  • Safari Lodge
Our Unique & Exciting Affiliation:
The travelling guest is the most important aspect of our industry. Ensuring their prompt feedback, understanding what they think of your property and the experience they’ve just had, is the lifeblood to your future success. Africa’s leading Reputation Management company, GuestRevu is partnering with GHASA to offer something unique for the African continent. Online Reputation Management with your GHASA membership (SoA accreditation) – included for free, mahala, sufuri, lutho, verniet, gratis.
And Why the Seal of Africa?

It is Africa’s time for something unique. Something non-political, cross border, representing the magic of this continent. A program for you and your properties – and something of value.