President of the National Association of Nigerian Travel Agencies (NANTA) Susan Akporiaye has described the International Travel and Tourism Conference set to hold in South Africa may 4th to 11th this year as one set to define the business of tourism for operators in the Nigerian Travel Market.
In an interview with AV1 News, she disclosed that the International Travel and Tourism Conference billed to hold in South Africa by May is one that will impact in no small measure on the Nigerian Travel Industry especially on businesses in the sector. According to her the idea for the event was conceived by her during the Association’s AGM which came up in Kano last year. It was attended by members of South Africa Tourism who bought into the idea and and offered to host the event Johannesburg.
”When they heard about it, they engaged us more and offered to host it because this event is big and we cannot do it alone because we are an association and cannot afford to host it alone. You know we are an NGO. Its not because NANTA is Nigerian therefore it must be hosted by Nigeria. It is an African thing, meaning its going to be moving from one African Country to the other. It will never leave Africa. The idea is to encourage travel within Africa. And what better way to do this is to start with the Professionals.
We the professionals are the ones people come to consult. We are the ones that advice people on the next destination they need to visit. If we don’t fall in love with our continent, how do we convince someone else to do so. How do we convince Africans to travel within Africa. ”
Mrs. Akporiaye also disclosed that the ITTC is organized in collaboration with the Tour Operators of Ghana (TOUGHAN) with the aim of providing an avenue where Travel operators from participating countries will get to learn from their South African counterparts.
”There is a Nigerian proverb that says ‘ follow who sabi road’, the South Africans have done it, they have a thriving travel and tourism Industry, so this is us going to learn from them. The training aspect of it is going to take place at the the Tourism department of University of South Africa. And participants will be certified at the end of the training.
”Do you know that the Tourism department of the University of South Africa rank N0.9 in the world? I did not know this fact. It was in the course of planning for this event that i got to know this. And I’m sure a lot of my colleagues dont know either. And also, there’s going to be a collaborative relationship with travel agencies generally. So the impact of this event on the bottom-line of travel Agencies in not just Nigeria is one that will certainly go a long way. ”
She also disclosed that the University has mapped out Ghana and Nigeria as their first destination for a road show. According to her, its all about the destination and falling in love with it.
The Conference is powered by NANTA in collaboration with TOUGHAN and is set to hold in May from 4th to 11th 2023.