Uzoma Akabusi is a travel enthusiast and tourism professional. He has also been actively involved with Africa's business tourism destination promotion and investment facilitation. His specialty is West Africa.
Previously, Uzoma Akabusi worked some international travel and logistics companies including Hertz in Nigeria.
In commemoration of Nigeria’s 53rd Independence anniversary, Dana Air is offering air travellers in Nigeria the opportunity to purchase a companion ticket on its existing route network – Lagos, Abuja, Port Harcourt, Uyo and Calabar – and get a reward of a ‘freedom ticket’ for travel anytime within the Independence month of October. Announcing the commencement of the gesture, Mr. Obi Mbanuzuo, Dana Air’s Head of Commercial said, “as our great nation marks her 53rd Independence anniversary this October, there is no better way to celebrate than to offer more Nigerians the freedom to fly. This is why we have introduced the freedom ticket initiative to encourage business and pleasure trips for family and friends.”
“Starting September 27, 2013, simply buy a Dana Air ticket for yourself and a companion and you will get one ‘freedom ticket’ for travel to any Dana Air destination; the more ‘companion tickets’ you buy online, the more freedom tickets you get! The freedom ticket is valid for travel in the month of October
To mark this year's World Tourism Day celebrations holding September 27, award-winning travel writer, Pelu Awofeso, has launched the e-versions of his travel books, TOUR OF DUTY: JOURNEYS AROUND NIGERIA AND SKETCHES OF EVERYDAY LIFE and NIGERIAN FESTIVALS: THE FAMOUS AND NOT SO FAMOUS. Both titles have been available in print over the years but travel book lovers can now get them in the electronic form. "I have opted for a 21st Century approach to book publishing, which is the e-book," Awofeso, winner 2010 CNN/Multichoice African Journalist Awards (Tourism), says. "What this means simply is that there are no physical inconveniences of any kind-the books can be bought at the click of a mouse and from anywhere in the world."
There is some relief at least for the 40,000 tourists stranded in a Mexican holiday resort cut off by floods. Emergency flights have started evacuation operations for the stranded tourists as they wait to be taken home after their worst holiday spent in Mexico due to the Tropical Storm Manuel which hit the coast on Sunday causing Landslides, rock slides, flood waters and collapsed bridges which severed links to the city of Acapulco. There was rush in the airport where Thousands of stranded tourists lined up outside an air force base north of Acapulco trying to find a seat in the handful of planes that were arranged to take the helpless tourists out of the flood affected Mexico City. The passengers looked tired and worried as they waited dressed in shorts and sandals for up to eight hours outside the base for their turn to board the Air Force flight and two passenger planes being used in the evacuation operation, five helicopters and seven cargo aircraft into service.
The entertainment programme on board the modern and casual luxury ship, the EUROPA 2, which has been awarded the highest distinction of “five-stars-plus” by the 2014 Berlitz Cruise Guide, continues to offer new innovations for guests. Three stage shows created exclusively for the EUROPA 2 by the Berlin production company “Phase 7” are currently running in the on-board theatre which covers two floors/decks. At their heart, these shows combine spectacular lighting effects, video and software art with music, dance and drama. The ensemble, consisting of ten artists, presents two shows per week. “Symphony for a Ship” is a production, which focuses on the EUROPA 2 and the story of its creation. The production combines musical sophistication, dancing skill and fascinating video aesthetics. Inspired by the beauty and design of the ship, the “Phase 7” artists have created a contemporary performance for all to see, especially on the eight-by-six-metre LED wall in the ship’s theatre. The video artists provide exclusive insights from the creative perspective of their art, including into the construction phase of the EUROPA 2
The Federal Government on Thursday in Abuja said it was committed to the success of the Argungu Fishing Festival to boost tourism in the country. The Minister of Culture, Tourism and National Orientation, Chief Edem Duke, said this when the Deputy Governor of Kebbi, Alhaji Ibrahim Aliyu, visited the ministry.Duke assured the Deputy Governor of federal government's commitment to the festival, while lauding the efforts of the Kebbi Government on the staging of the festival. The ministry is set to work with Kebbi to resuscitate the cultural celebration of the Argungu festival,’’ he told Aliyu, who was accompanied by a delegation of the festival‘s organizing committee.
Duke said the ministry would immediately translate the paperwork on the event to action, in order to ensure the success of the festival.He urged the media to help promote the resurgence of the Argungu festival as a showcase for the nation's centenary celebration activities.I also recommend that strategic partners in the private sector and international forum should aid the realization of the fishing festival,’’ the minister said.
Dana Air has asked the Federal Government to remove the 5 percent value added tax (VAT) on air tickets so as to reduce the cost of air travel. Dana Air noted that beside aviation fuel (jet A1) which constitutes about 40 percent of operating costs of airlines with huge impact on air ticket cost, VAT also drives the cost higher. Mr. Obi Mbanuzuo, the Head, Commercial, Dana Air made the call in Lagos during the inauguration flight service of Dana Air from Abuja to Uyo and Calabar. He said it is not within the powers of the airlines alone to drive down cost of air ticket; government must also play a role.
"It's not within our power only to drive down cost of air ticket. We are doing the best we can within the airline but at the same time we are trying to lobby government and service organizations within the aviation industry to make sure the costs are affordable. For a country of 150 million people and just about 5 million people are flying, it's really not good enough. If we get about 10 percent (15 million) people flying, it will be better for the industry but the prices would have to come down to achieve this," he said.Commenting on the 30 aircraft window proposed for airlines by the Federal Ministry of Aviation, he said the airlines haven't seen any reasonable commitment to the initiative.
The Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) said it has taken further steps to improve safety and security at the airports by installing additional modern security equipment, in line with the on-going transformation in the aviation sector.According to Yakubu Dati, FAAN's spokesman, the Authority has installed seven brand new X-ray scanning machines at the Murtala Muhammed Airport, Lagos, five at the cargo basement of the international terminal, one at the Hajj and Cargo terminal and another at the airport's domestic terminal 1. This is in addition to existing security equipment at the airport.
The Nigerian Tourism Development Corporation (NTDC) has said that the nation could generate $4 billion (N623 billion) annually from domestic tourism due to its high revenue and job creation potential. The Director-General of NTDC, Mrs Sally Mbanefo, said this at a stakeholders’ meeting in Lagos.
The meeting had the theme: “Rebuilding the NTDC and Growing the Tourism Value Chain for Revenue Generation and Job Creation”.
Mbanefo said that the NTDC focused on domestic tourism to boost influx of tourists. “If 20 million out of the 160 million Nigerians travel locally for business, leisure, culture, religion or sports, NTDC expects to generate $4 billion annually through the domestic tourism market,” she said. The director-general said that domestic tourism was paramount to Nigeria’s development because of its enormous potential in providing jobs. “Through the development of domestic tourism, the industry will be one of the major contributors to Nigeria`s Gross Domestic Product (GDP). “The essence of developing the tourism value chain is to create more jobs for youths through partnership with public, private and multilateral organisations,” she said.
The House of Representatives Committee on Marine Transport has solicited the assistance of International Maritime Organisation (IMO) in making sure that Nigerian cadets get sea time training after graduation from maritime institute. Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi, committee chairman, who made the appeal when he led the delegation of the lawmakers on a courtesy visit to Koji Sekimizu, IMO secretary general, at the IMO headquarters in London, United Kingdom, said the request became imperative because Nigeria on its own had not been able to tackle the situation. Traveldigest checks have disclosed that lack of sea time training for cadets who graduated from Nautical Sciences, Marine Engineering and other maritime-related courses from the Maritime Academy of Nigeria, Oron (MAN), has made it impossible for Nigerian cadets to compete favorably with their counterparts in other countries, such as Philippines, etc.