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JOZI’S first City Sightseeing open top tour bus was introduced to the public with a trip around the inner city to see its various attractions.

Claus Claus Tworeck: Buses will change people's perception of JoziOn Friday, 8 June, Gauteng Tourism Authority rolled out one of four hop-on hop-off buses in the inner city, and the MEC of economic development, Qedani Mahlangu, was one of the first passengers aboard. It was just a glimpse of the bus, though. They will officially start operating in the city of gold in January 2013, in downtown Jozi.

The City Sightseeing buses are a global brand. They already operate in Cape Town, and in another 100 countries. Friday’s tour started outside the Gauteng Provincial Legislature on the corner of President and Hall streets in the CBD, where the red and yellow bus was parked.

The four buses are state-of-the-art, with super-low emissions that comply with all Euro emission standards for environmental impact. Claus Tworeck, the chief executive of City Sightseeing, spoke briefly about the vehicles. “The buses will change people’s perception of the city,” he said.

“The City Sightseeing tours promise to open up a whole new side of this amazing city for locals and tourist alike and in doing so we will grow tourism spend while providing employment for local city residents, now working with City Sightseeing Johannesburg as passionate ambassadors for our golden metropolis,” said Tworeck.

Liveable CitiesIt can carry 22 passengers on the bottom in single and double seats, and 55 passengers on top in double seats. Each seat has an FM radio and passengers are given headsets when they board. They can listen to music while waiting for the bus to departure. But once the bus gets on the road, the music stops and a tour guide tells the history of Johannesburg.

Domestic tourism
With the bus tours, the tourism department aims to reach 60 percent of local residents and to bring back the city’s vibe. “Our goal is to promote domestic tourism,” said Tworeck.

Dawn Roberston, the chief executive of the Gauteng Tourism Authority, said: “We are very excited about the new hop-on hop-off buses. They are sure to become a premier tourism experience in Johannesburg. In future we are looking at bringing the buses to Pretoria too.”

ToursTours will be safe and reliableTours will take an exciting route through the city of gold, offering locals and tourists alike a chance to explore the vibrant city and visit many attractions to sample the sights, sounds, colours and culture as well as the rich heritage sites that are all synonymous with Jozi.

Buses will run at 30-minute intervals to allow guaranteed frequent, safe and reliable transport that is cost effective, informative and fun.

The tours will operate on a hop-on hop- off basis, allowing passengers to get off at any of the 10 designated stops along the route and then get back on a later bus when they are ready to take their journey further. “Good news for parents is that our buses are kid-friendly because children receive a free activity book in the bus and they can join our kids club,” said Tworeck.

Tours will run from 9am until late seven days a week. Tickets for the bus tours will cost R140 for the whole day trip, and will be 20 percent cheaper if bought online. School groups are able to book the tours on Mondays to Fridays during school terms.

No smoking or consuming alcohol is allowed inside the bus. The City Sightseeing buses in Johannesburg are an element of the Joburg 2040 strategy, an aspirational document that defines the type of society Joburg wants to become by 2040.

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