Tourism Is A Serious Money Making Business, Let’s Pay More Attention To It

Ghana’s Stand At The World Travel Market

Every time there is the world travel market in London, I see Ghana’s participation, but can close my eyes and be sure that the setting will be the same because it would lack creativity. If its not the usual white tables decorated with the famous Kente cloth, a pride of Ghana, It would perhaps be another color and a few tour companies buying stands and exhibiting their brochures and flyers on the little table they paid for. It looks like petty trading in Ghana and we all know what petty trading is, its petty.

How does a country expect people to be attracted to invest in its  tourism industry if it isn’t projecting it right? So these are a few things that I think Ghana can do to be more attractive and visible.

There are amazing tourist attractions in the country with awesome history. Take for instance the Larabanga Mosque, the Kakum National Park, Cape Coast Castle and the Independence Arch to mention a few.

Ghana, Larabanga Mosque
“After restoration”
I am sure that if the tourist board had a robust team, creative and innovative enough, it will be able to attract funding that would enable the country to have miniature outer models of these attractions to be modeled as space setup during exhibitions,use traditional furniture like the native stools to showcase our furniture. Starting a conversation playing a game of Oware during the exhibition, is a good ice breaker and can tell a lot of stories and give a lot of value to visitors.

If you must take a miss tourism Ghana to showcase the country, please make sure that they are in full kente regalia and not showcasing a contemporary style of the proper wearing of the cloth as this takes away the true value and appreciation of the cloth.

Paa Kwesi Inkumsah With Miss Ghana Tourism 2013 At World Travel Market

I had  a very good impression of Kenya with how they sold the country each time, by bringing real Masai warriors who only don’t wear their clothes just for the  exhibition but to showcase their pride and joy everywhere they went in London. That said a lot got people curious to know more. No wonder this country is a strong tourism haven on the coast of Africa.

My first experience with the Masai warrior was to request a photo opportunity to add to my collection of awesome traditional apparels and to show off that I met a real Masai warrior. During my photo moment with him, I held the spear of the warrior while the shot was taken. Note: The spear of the Masai is only held by him, so I was honored to have this privilege.

Masai Warrior at World Travel Market

My friend who wanted a photo moment too, wasn’t lucky as the warrior resisted and told him to visit Kenya and earn his stripes as a warrior. It would be the only way he would earn the right to hold a spear.

Holding the spear of the Masai is an honor as with that spear, he killed a lion.

I am happy to have had this opportunity.

Masai Warrior Spotted At London tube platform going for WTM

 

So the only way I had access to this information was first the attraction of the Masai in shape and form. Ghana’s Kente has a rich history that can be told to the world, our name “Gold Coast” has a lot of richness too and the display of gold ornaments as main accessories will go a long way to sell the rich resources of the land. Taking the very day plus size Ghanaian woman for these exhibitions depicts the true nature of our people as we are know by our curves and various contours.

Language is one thing we must learn to  use and having Akwaaba Ghana will be an ideal introduction. Depending on which day of the week we are exhibiting, we can have various themes created to present a unique, awesome experience. If I am right, I think Ghana is one of the few countries in the world that names her people depending on the day of week and this I think is clever and something that can be sold to the rest of the world.

I would love to engage any department in tourism regarding the destination of the various areas in the country.

 

Ghanaians Made Ghana Beaches Dirty

Child spotted on the beach at Kokrobite in Accra. Photo credits by Paa Kwesi Inkumsah

Every where in the world, beaches have being a great point of escape for a great holiday to relax, de stress and be in tune with nature.

For me, some of the most amazing experiences have been on the beach. Spending time there and getting up early with my camera to walk a few stretch of sea sand with the coolness of the water massaging my feet and caressing them gently as if knowing what I need is just so refreshing. Capturing the early morning sun rise and again the sun set is an amazing and breath taking experience.

While I have had the best moments of my life on the beach, they have being clean and without the thought of the inhabitants putting filth into the ocean because they respect her. Its very shocking and difficult for people I know outside of Ghana to comprehend that some of the beaches in Ghana are dirty, with a few clean ones. They can’t understand it because it still doesn’t make sense even to me. But I have a perspective of it, same reason why the city center is dirty, the lack of maintenance of our parks and the very poor culture of maintenance generally.

Sitting at the Koral Resort in grand Bassam in Ivory Coast is always full of fond memories, because the most amazing experience I had was having breakfast at the beach and enjoying the view of a clean beach. I enjoy having breakfast in a few favorite places in Ghana, key to which is Big Milly’s backyard, awesome place, great people, nice vibe but still work in progress regarding the coast line. It doesn’t matter how many times you cleaned the coast, every other day, it appears that it found it self with many more trash.

If nature every day teaches man the fundamental lessons of cleanliness by rejecting the filth that we put in our water bodies, I wonder when humanity can understand this principle.

Yes, quite ridiculous that people empty trash in the sea and openly defecate there. While I have struggled many years understanding this, I realized that it was attitudinal. How else can I explain this. So first of all, we must deal with cleaning up the mindset and our beaches will be clean. This doesn’t only refer to the beaches but the surroundings. So frankly, the issue of sanitation is not solely the responsibility of the government. 50% of the effort must come from its citizens and I think that Ghanaians can do a much better job maintaining the coast line.

Ghana is a great country, its people very friendly and accommodating but have attitude that stink just as the stench we create. Let’s clean up the mess and maintain some sanctity.

 

Why I Love Chale Wote Arts Festival

“Chale” which is an affectionate word that means my friend, and “wote” a local dialect by the Ga’s which means let’s go is also the name for flip flop. But in this contest, it means, my friend, let’s go to the arts festival. My first experience was in the summer of 2014, I had returned from London, looking for somewhere cool to go and twitter just served me right  because there seem to be the promotion of a harsh tag and an image that caught on very quickly all across twitter and oh boy did I have a blast!

Since its inception, the festival has brought the arts together and celebrated diversity and bridged people and places together. Every  year,  many people from all over the world attend the music and art festival with a colorful display of arts and culture from Ghana and different parts of the world.

This platform has presented a unique opportunity for people to express themselves through their creativity and given many a stage to be seen by the rest of the world.

For me, the festival has being a great opportunity to observe peoples reactions and presented me with  a unique opportunity to capture the most amazing moments via my camera lens. Laughter, excitement, the thrill and the general razmataz of the festive season. From fancy dressed pool men to interesting outfits dating from the 60’s and all finding its way to the festival giving it color and giving a sense of style and panache to the occasion.

Sefa Gohoho spotted with her friend on the streets of James Town during Chale Wote 2016

From excited youth expressing themselves in the hip hop culture and representing the yo-yo movement to artists using cloth and the streets as canvas and crafting unique strokes with their paint brushes and an observant crowd that watches on appreciating the artists creations and wait in anticipation for the moment the work is finished and installed so they can have their photo moment with the pieces. Such great feeling.

The 34 metres (112 ft) above sea level lighthouse situated in Jamestown, with a visibility of 16 nautical miles hosts the street art festival. The destination known to be the  oldest district in the city of Accra. The lighthouse is very much alive in the month of August, same month that hosts the Ga festival “Homowo” which meanings hooting at hunger. On this day however, the lighthouse becomes busy and the envy of the city as most people visit it, shoot awesome videos with their drones and have an amazing experience up the light house.

Big, small, tall, short. thin and plus size people from different walks of life enjoy the rich variety of food and drinks varying from awesome cocktails,bissup to pinto and my favorite palm wine. It’s a place to connect with old relations and during this time, I have met some very old friends and shared some very great moments.

The  art festival for me, has not only not only being refreshing, but invigorating as it connected me first to the heart and soul of humanity and also presented me with an amazing opportunity to establish great bonds with new people. During this period, it is the celebration of the art, of life of humanity, of our existence of people of color.

If you seek a good place to have an amazing summer experience, prepare your trip, park your baggage, and have and come to Ghana for an amazing week, experiencing people and culture.

 

Ghana Diaspora Homecoming Summit

The three day informative, captivating and thrilling event which commenced on the 5th of July and ended on the 8th brought Ghanaians both home and abroad to discuss development, opportunities and value creation.

The summit engaged the diaspora to focus on the present economic agenda of the country with the various trade and foreign ministries as well as the private sector having key role in the panel discussions.

Perhaps one of the most and key highlights of the conference was the presentation made by the deputy minister of trade and industries Mr. Ahomka Lindsey who stated that people must stop whining and be part of the solution as it would take a collective effort to build the country.

I used the opportunity to promote my business networking piece Kasabiz popularly branded with the letter K to introduce participants to the platform and used the opportunity to explain to curious participants the meaning of the letter K as well as the main purpose of the business. The networking creates a great platform to help businesses and startups learn from each other and foster growth.

The role of the private trade support institutions such as my initiative, can not be left out in the life of the returnee to integrate and build any business. Preparation, both mentally and physically is key and I don’t  only ensure this through coaching sections, but assists potential business owners with the business processes key to which is new market entry and business development and helps to monitor startup growth and development while coaching the returnee to understand the psychology of the new business environment.

Africa is ready, Ghana prepared, lets engage!

4 Apps Every Business Leader Should Have

1. Tripit

To begin your journey, its important to have an application that can help facilitate all your travel needs

So what is tripit? TripIt is the travel organizing app that automagically creates a master itinerary for every trip so you can access all your travel plans, anytime, on any device.

Once you’ve made your travel bookings, you simply forward your flight, hotel, car rental, and other travel confirmation emails to plans@tripit.com. If you use Gmail, Outlook.com or Yahoo Mail, tripit can import your travel-related confirmation emails automatically — no forwarding required. TripIt uses the details in your confirmation email to create a comprehensive, master itinerary for every trip that you can access anytime, on any device. TripIt also makes it easy to selectively share your whole itinerary or just specific travel plans with friends, family, or colleagues, saving you from copying and pasting all the details of when you arrive or where you’re staying.

2. Uber

Business travel can be stressful. Whether you’re flying across the globe to close a multi-million dollar deal or traveling across town to pitch a new client, there are always variables involved in the logistics of simply getting there, before the meeting even begins.

Uber helps simplify trips, whether they be near or far, by eliminating the headache of getting from Point A to Point B. those details aside, you can focus more of your attention on where it should be: your business.

Here are just a few of the perks Uber provides.

a. Say Goodbye To Pesky Parking Garages

Where’s the nearest parking garage to my client? How early should I arrive to find a spot and make it upstairs for the meeting? Should I ask my client to validate my ticket? These are just a few of the questions that will become distant memories when you ride with Uber.

b. Eliminate The Lines

In many industries, every minute matters. Uber helps employees be even more productive by eliminating lines at rental counters, hotel valets, and other common car-collection locations. Simply request an Uber when you’re ready to depart, and relax as your driver approaches. Average wait times are less than five minutes in most cities.

c. Brush Up On Your Game Plan

The valuable minutes before an important presentation or meeting should be used for reviewing your presentation. Do you have slides? Mentally walk through what main point you’ll make on each. Are you delivering remarks? Review your opening and closing statements, and prepare answers to the questions you anticipate will be asked.

d. Stay Connected On The Go

Riding with Uber frees up your transportation time to be used for something other than driving. Whether you choose to catch up on emails or plug away at your to-do list—or something less work-related, like calling your significant other or taking a quick power nap—Uber adds valuable minutes to your trip that can be spent any way you choose.

3. iTranslate

If your next trip takes you to another country, make sure you have a little conversation starter with you: iTranslate!

iTranslate is an attractive app that will help you break down the language barrier in any situation, be it during a business meeting or when you out on the town.

4. Planes Live

Planes Live is a simple yet powerful tool that lets you watch the planes online all over the world and get up-to-date information on flights instantly! Track the flights of your family members or beloved ones as if you were traveling with them and find the best time to pick them up at the airport. This application is currently on IOS alone but has its alternatives on android.

I hope that you find these applications useful, until we meet again. Connect, collaborate and create stronger business synergies.