NTW To Promote Nigerian Travel Brand In 2nd Edition

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Nigeria Travel Week
Efetobo Awhana (right) and other stakeholders At the press conference to announce the second edition of the Nigeria Travel Week recently.

In its bid to consistently promote the Nigerian travel and tourism brand, Avant Garde Tours, organisers of one of West Africa’s largest travel and tourism events, Nigeria Travel Week, have concluded plans to host the second edition of the event.

According to the organisers, the second edition of Nigeria Travel Week is expected to be the largest gathering of professionals in the hospitality industry as it will bring together aviation professionals, travel consultants, tour operators, hoteliers, restaurateurs, curators, travel techs and other tourism stakeholders to discuss trends and solutions for growth of the tourism industry in Nigeria and Africa.

The Convener of the Event, Mr. Efetobo Awhana in a conference recently, said that just like the theme for the year, Nigeria Travel Week 2018 is a result of a strategic partnership between the different major public and private sector stakeholders in the Nigerian tourism space including the NTDC, FTAN, NANTA, and SKAL Nigeria. The goal, he says, is to host a true world class event to drive the change for a new narrative for domestic and inbound tourism in Nigeria.

He adds: “This year’s edition will feature a tourism exhibition where the various tourism stakeholders will showcase and offer amazing travel deals to trade and the public. Different states in Nigeria will provide snippets of their tourism offerings including hotels, museums and attractions, restaurants and cuisine. Visitors will be able to book holidays on the spot or create a dream package for the future.

“Nigeria Travel Week will also provide a platform for stakeholders of the tourism industry to meet with the Director General of Nigeria Tourism Development Corporation, Mr Folorunsho Folarin-Coker, who will seek to deepen the level of collaboration within the industry. This is coming as the NTDC has been able to enter strategic partnerships with GOOGLE and Wikimedia to solve one of the fundamental problems facing tourism in Nigeria – information in a digital world!

“There will also be a Travel Roundtable program which includes four sessions with 24 panelists who are renown in the industry including Prince Yemisi Shyllon of OYASAF, Desmond Majekodumi of LUFASI Park, Jon Howell of Aviadev Africa, Tana Forsuelo of Wavecrest College of Hospitality, Robin Campbell of Nigeria Field Society and Bernard Bankole of Finchglow Travels. The sessions focus on building a career in tourism, changing boundaries in African tourism, investment opportunities in Nigerian tourism and tech trends for the tourism industry,” he said.

The climax of Nigeria Travel Week is the Balearica Awards also known as the Nigeria Tourism Awards which honours outstanding tourism stakeholders over the last 12 months. The Balearica, according to the organisers, is named and designed after the Crowned Crane. The Black Crowned Crane was proposed to be the national bird of Nigeria around 1985, even though it is not very clear how and why it was changed to the eagle. Countries have national animals and plants as symbols for tourism promotion.

The statuette is a 24ct gold plated aluminium with a solid black acrylic base. The Balearica will become a pan-African award by 2020. The awards are vetted by Phillips Consulting for quality and integrity purposes. Some of the winners at last year’s awards include the Ooni of Ife, His Imperial Majesty, Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi won the royal support for Tourism Award; Best tourism governor was clinched by Gov. Akinwunmi Ambode; Chief Olusegun Obasanjo was presented the Lifetime Achievement Award. Ibom Golf Resort Uyo won Best Resort while Terra Kulture won the award for Best Restaurant.

All events will hold at Federal Palace Hotel, V/Island, Lagos. Attendance is free for the public except the Balearica Awards which is strictly by invitation due to the limited spaces available. Pre-registration for Nigeria Travel Week is through the official website: nigeriatravelweek.com and via Eventbrite.

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