Ayodeji: Security Concerns Affecting Tourism in Nigeria

Justina Uzo 

The Principal Executive of Flyzone Tourism, a Dubai destination management company, Mr. Awomoyi Ayodeji, has identified some of the problems travel agencies in Nigeria are having despite the huge resources that abound in the country.

He said Nigeria has a lot to offer the world in terms of tourist products but security concerns had become the challenge making travellers to look elsewhere.

 “Once insecurity is dealt with, we will get out of it,” he said.     Ayodeji also pointed out that travel business in Nigeria is still contending with the issue of fraudulent agents as there are many of them in the sector.

He regretted that some Nigerian travel agents have been known to scam one another, advising them to build trust among their clients.            

It is for these reasons he said supporting travel agencies had become a major concern of Flyzone Tourism.

For five years, he said Flyzone Tourism had processed Dubai visas for over 4,000 travel agencies.

He said when procedure for United Arab Emirates (UAE) visa was made easy for Nigerians, visiting that country was easy, “until some unfortunate events resulted to visa restriction to certain persons.                                

Explaining further, Ayodeji said part of the issues include the tendency by Nigerians to get a 30-day visa and 90-day visa yet insist on spending more days than allowed.                                 

He said it was partly responsible for new requirements like bank statements and hotel reservations, by the UAE authorities.

 Notwithstanding, he said, “There are so many Nigerians living legally and doing good business in the UAE.”     Ayodeji, who has been in the aviation industry since 2019, said Flyzone Tourism offers services to bridge the space between Nigeria travel companies and Dubai.

Flyzone Tourism offerings include tour packages, hotel reservations and procurement of visas on a business-to-business basis.      

He said packages like these have addressed issues of delivery which in turn makes their clients happy.

 He continued, “Dubai has evolved over the years to become one of the world’s most prestigious and popular tourism destination, attracting visitors from different parts of the world to its shores to experience what they have to offer.”

Citing some research, he said over 11.95 million people travelled from across the globe to the Emirate in 2014, up from 11.12 million in 2013, “invariably, demonstrating that the appeal of Dubai as a tourist destination has grown further.”

“As a place famous for superlatives such as the world’s biggest skyscraper and largest mall, it’s unsurprising that people flock to its shores to set their eyes on its great feats and achievements. Some of the new attractions include Ain Dubai, Madame Tussauds Dubai, and Museum of the Future.”

He recalled that in 2019, Nigeria was one of our top performing source markets with a year-on-year increase of 33 per cent in visitor numbers, supported by the increase in seat capacity from Emirates Airline between Dubai and Nigeria in the summer.

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