Want to see the rebirth of tourism in Ghana? Take a staycation!

The president of the Tour Operators Union of Ghana says domestic travel is a key to reviving tourism in Ghana. And she asks entrepreneurs to come up with initiatives to drive and deepen the local tourist market

The coronavirus pandemic has made it vital for us to focus our attention on the domestic market to ensure the growth of tourism in Ghana.

The tourism business in Ghana, like those in most other countries around the world, suffered a battering with the onset of the pandemic. Just when the sector was poised  to enjoy a turnaround with the highly successful Year of Return in 2019, we had the advent of the coronavirus.

In most cases, the pandemic brought travel across countries and continents to a halt and, unfortunately, rolled back the numbers and receipts.

Since then it has become necessary for government to introduce measures to cushion tourism operators and industry players who have been at the receiving end of some of the harshest effects of the virus.

The government has also had to find ways of ensuring continuity in the Ghanaian travel and tours industry. This, in turn, has shifted the focus from foreign to domestic tourism.

Double-decker city tours

Leading the charge in this regard is the Ghana Tourism Authority (GTA), which has found many innovative and creative ways of selling Ghana to the country’s citizens, to increase local travel to the many visitor attractions across the country.

The latest initiative – #ExperienceGhana #ShareGhana – is a rallying call to all citizens to explore our land: its beauty, warmth, culture and rhythms. The acquisition of a double-decker coach for city tours is already adding to the enthusiasm that has characterised the launch of the new campaign.

We in the Tour Operators Union of Ghana (TOUGHA) feel proud to be lending our support to the implementation of such noble initiatives. As a body whose overall mandate is to take people to experience and enjoy our attractions, we believe that we should shoulder a sizable share of the responsibility for realising the greater goal of driving at least a million Ghanaians to tourist sites each year. That, indeed, is the objective espoused by the Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture, Ibrahim Mohammed Awal.

Neither is it lost on us what the repercussions of attaining this ambitious target could be on the country’s socio-economic growth. And that is why we continue wholeheartedly to embrace stakeholders in rolling out programmes which benefit the domestic tourism agenda.

Competitive rates

Since November last year, TOUGHA has embarked on tours to the Ashanti, Eastern and Central Regions to update ourselves on the state of tourism sites in these parts of Ghana.

In so doing, the union has also become acquainted with less well-known but exciting sites that could be incorporated into our tour packages.

We are resolved to continue mounting these tours until we cover all 16 regions of Ghana.

Beyond this, we feel particularly happy to be engaging the ministry, the GTA and associated agencies to put together packages at reduced and competitive rates for everyone.

We urge all sister tourism trade associations to follow our example, and come up with initiatives to drive and deepen domestic tourism.

We firmly believe that domestic tourism is the cornerstone around which we can build the resilience that the tourism industry has always been known for. And we will continue to play our part to ensure that Ghana becomes a preferred destination for her own citizens and for visitors from across the world.

Alisa Osei-Asamoah
Tour Operators Union of Ghana

Asaase Radio 99.5 – tune in or log on to broadcasts online
Follow us on Twitter: @asaaseradio995

Show More

Related Articles

Back to top button

Adblock Detected