Nigeria Travel Week (NTW) Targets 40 million Domestic Travellers in 5 years
The Tourism Industry in Nigeria is set to turn the bend as the organizers of Nigeria Travel Week (NTW) unveil an exciting annual travel and tourism event to debut in Nigeria by November 2017. Speaking about the new travel and tourism project, the Managing Director of Avantgarde Tours Limited, Efetobo Awhana, who is also the CEO of Nigeria Travel Week, disclosed that it is geared at promoting travel and tourism in Nigeria by making Nigerians see the need to patronize travel agencies in Nigeria as it targets 20% of Nigerians exploring the country in the next five years with over 2 million direct and indirect jobs created.
According to him, NTW ‘‘is a multi – day travel and tourism event platform that aims to drive the Nigerian tourism industry by bringing together buyers, consumers, travel technologies, travel and tourism service providers and the media to network, review and discuss the development of tourism in Nigeria.’’ The event, billed to hold between November 20 and 25, includes pre and post-event hosted delegates familiarization tours.
Objectives of the Nigeria Travel Week (NTW) include to help nurture healthy leisure lifestyles and change the ‘Nigerian’ perception that travel and tourism is luxury; To promote travel and tourism in Nigeria and thus ensure a proper balance in the ‘Africans travelling Africa’ campaign on the continent; and to change the media and general narrative of Nigeria as a “Boko Haram and Corruption Country” to a Rich Ecotourism and Cultural Travel and Tourism Destination.
Nigeria Travel Week (NTW) aims to increase the local travel and tourism figures by 20% while creating 2,000,000 direct and indirect jobs by 2022 in the process. Nigeria Travel Week (NTW) seeks to publicly promote the benefits of travelling within Nigeria while also promoting Nigeria as a rich travel and tourism destination. The message Nigeria Travel Week (NTW) will be promoting Nigeria to the international community as a travel and tourism destination endowed with unique attractions and tourism investment opportunities.
To achieve this, Nigeria Travel Week (NTW) has been tagged as a massive campaign to get Nigerians to travel Nigeria. Nigeria Travel Week (NTW) is poised to attract about 5,000 people over the duration and will among others generate buzz and discussions on domestic tourism; get Nigeria trending for the right reasons over 10 days; publicize destinations around Nigeria; help in data collation of travellers and tourism statistics in Nigeria and create awareness of the benefits of travel in-country and on the continent.
Awhana also disclosed that the activities slated for the platform, which include Familiarization Tours, Travel Roundtable, Tourism Cup (Golf), Village Square, Travel Hangout and Nigeria Tourism Awards, would hold at different locations, such as: The Wheatbaker Hotel, Freedom Park, Ikoyi Club Golf Course, Lekki Leisure Lake and Federal Palace Hotel.
He urged corporate bodies and government ministries, departments and agencies to take advantage of this history making platform to expose their products and services to the international audience, beside Nigerians as over 50 international delegates made up of tour operators, travel agents, travel media and bloggers from 24 countries have already signed up as hosted delegates. Some of the countries from which delegates have been confirmed are: Australia, Botswana, Brazil, Chile, China, Cyprus, Ethiopia, Ghana, Hungary, India, Israel, Kenya, Mozambique, Nigeria, Philippines, Poland, Russia, Rwanda, South Africa, Tanzania, Uganda, UK, US, and Zambia.
The CEO of Afro Tourism, who is one of the principal partners of the project, Toni Ukachukwu, expressed confidence in the fact that Nigeria Travel Week (NTW) will transform the tourism landscape in Nigeria and he promised that everything possible would be done to ensure that this first outing sets the tone and pace for the platform, which is a yearly event that would form a key part of the continent’s tourism calendar. Afro Tourism is a member of Africa Travel Association (ATA) and an affiliate member of United Nation World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO).
As expected, the Nigeria Tourism Development Corporation (NTDC) is also heavily involved in the project, with the Director General, Mr Folorunso Folarin-Coker expressing his delight at the private sector driven project, which aligns with his corporation’s goals.