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Tourism and Travel – Africans are Doing It For Themselves

Australians call it ‘walkabout’, northern Europeans go looking for the sun, others go looking for business, whatever the reason, for many once they have left home for the first time they want to continue to travel. This curiosity, combined with economic growth is driving the demand for hotels in Africa. Where once demand was dependent on international travellers Africans are now doing it for themselves, and as a consequence creating a much more robust and sustainable industry.

Nairobi leading the way

One example is the MICE segment in Nairobi which has fundamentally changed over recent years. It was originally dependent on international conferences and consequently generated significant room-nights – over the past 10 years, the number of domestic delegates has doubled, which has forced hoteliers to adapt to the new demand. Whereas previously hotels enjoyed room sales along with the conference, now most delegates live locally and do not need accommodation. Hotels are, therefore, having to review their business mix.

Although this example may not be good news for hoteliers, it is illustrative of the changing trend within African hotels generally – less reliance on European, Middle Eastern and American guests and more demand from local and regional customers. Overall, domestic tourism in Kenya grew from 37% of total bed-nights in 2011 to 54% in 2015.

In the short-term revenues may be affected, with more local conferences, tighter budgets and more local guests without a hard currency in their pocket. However, it is in fact great news. With the whole continent requiring hotel accommodation, the pool from which to draw your customers has just got 1.25 billion larger.

Not only is the number of potential guests much larger, the majority of these guests are better informed of the real risks of travel across the continent, so are less likely to be swayed by 24-hour news channels. They are also likely to reduce the seasonality of your business. Leisure guests will be able to travel throughout the year for short-breaks and commercial travellers will be able to make quick overnight stops, rather than planning (and delaying) longer trips.

For information as to how Relocation Africa can help you with your Mobility, Immigration, Research, and Remuneration needs, email marketing@relocationafrica.com, or call us on +27 21 763 4240.

 

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Requirements for Nigerians in Diaspora Travelling Home On Foreign Passports

Nigerians who wish to go home to Nigeria using another country’s passport are charged the same fee that is charged to all foreigners applying for a travel Visa to Nigeria.

They are also required to submit to biometric data enrollment as is the case for all foreign visa applicants – just as other countries ask Nigerians who wish to travel abroad to go through biometric visa enrollment.

This is also based on the fact that a significant number of Nigerians in diaspora are dual citizens – they are citizens of the country where they reside while retaining their Nigerian citizenship also.

It is very important to note that any Nigerian who resides abroad who wishes to come home can obtain or renew a Nigerian passport at the same relative price as that paid by Nigerians in Nigeria. But if the Nigerian residing abroad chooses to use their foreign passport to travel to Nigeria, they must then obtain a visa just like every other holder of a foreign passport wishing to travel to Nigeria.

This is not unique to Nigeria. This is the same rule that applies with every country that allows its citizens to have dual citizenship.

This response is aimed at providing a proper background into the recently introduced Nigerian biometric visa issuance in order to clear some misconceptions such as that which alleges that it is an exploitative policy targeted at Nigerians in diaspora wishing to “come home” for a visit.

It is imperative to highlight the need for the introduction of biometric processes in the visa issuance process as a means of addressing contemporary migration issues and challenges. Foremost in this regard, is the issue of security within the context of international terrorism as well as internal insurgency problems.

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Relo Originals: Moving With Your Pet

Emigrating can be a stressful experience – not only for us, but for our pets too. It is important to ensure that the correct procedures are followed for a successful pet move, and to make sure that your special friends are taken care of throughout.

We have partnered with a local pet moving company, PETport, who have provided us with some information about the pet moving process, and the top pet-related things to consider when emigrating. Read our interview with PETport owner Hazel below for some helpful tips.

What are the most important things to consider during the process of moving your pet overseas?

It is important to ensure that pet vaccinations and microchipping are done. Afterwards, the process of doing blood tests and permits, as appropriate for the country of destination, can begin.

Are there any circumstances when you would advise someone not to take their pet with them?

Each pet and family is very different. If a pet is unwell, and fails the health certificate, moving it is not advisable. Animals can have differing side effects at altitude if there are underlying health conditions. PETport has successfully flown animals up to 23 years old, so older animals can be relocated successfully.

What are the benefits of hiring a professional pet moving company to assist with the move?

Doing so is highly recommended. The company will ensure that your vaccinations, microchipping, and any necessary blood tests have been carried out at the correct time, in accordance with export and import procedures, specific to your destination country.

If dates are missed at blood testing, the test may be considered null and void, and the entire export process must begin again. A professional pet moving company ensures that the whole process is tied together, managed to arrival at airport, and at the other side – door to door. All that the owner needs to be concerned with is having the correct documentation, and following the clearly laid out instructions provided by the pet shipper.

What are things to look for when deciding which pet moving company to use?

IPATA registration and accreditation is important, as this indicates a set of standards and ethics within your chosen pet shipping company. A red light to mark bad companies is quotes for crates that are too small. Air freight is measured in volumetric kilograms, so some companies quote for smaller crates to make their prices more attractive. Using a crate that is too small will make for a very uncomfortable journey for your pet. All pets need to travel in an airplane’s cargo hold, other than service animals, which, on approval, can sit in an airplane’s cabin.

What are the common requirements (documentation, medical, etc.) for taking your pet overseas?

Blood tests, vaccinations, and microchipping are all common, as is a health certificate, issued by your local vet. As part of its service, a pet moving company will prepare the documentation, and ensure that it’s up to date and correct. There are often issues where vets don’t know about the requirements for the process, and a pet moving company, which monitors the industry, could inform vets as to what is required in order to provide owners with a smooth transition overseas.

What can you do to make the transition for the pet as easy as possible (stress-wise)?

  • Keep calm, and try not to transfer any stress you may have onto your pet.
  • Keep your pet’s routines as normal as possible.
  • Put an old t-shirt with your scent in the pet’s crate.
  • If your packing process is hectic and you are stressed, it may be a good idea to move your pet to a boarding facility.Doing so assists with keeping the pet’s routine, allowing them to remain calm.Boarding kennels will also assist with crate training your pet prior to travel, which may make the journey easier for your pet.

Do you have any recommendations for familiarizing a pet with a new home?

  • Establish your pet’s routine in the new space as soon as possible.
  • Bring elements of the old routine into the new home.
  • Put pet beds, an old t-shirt, toys, bowls, etc. down as soon as possible.
  • Don’t make a fuss – let your pet explore and find their spaces.
  • Some pets like bathing with familiar shampoos for bonding.

Dogs generally acclimatise quicker than cats. Cats may ignore their owner for a few days, but soon settle into their new homes.Cat’s homes must have windows and doors closed until the cat has adjusted to their new surroundings.

About PETport:

PETport is a registered company. Its owner, Hazel Imrie, is a member of IPATA (International Pet and Animal Transport Association), and represents the Middle East and Africa region as a board member. PETport deals mainly with dogs, cats, and birds, but does transport some wild animals. The company does not do relocations for animals used for breeding farms, food, etc.

Following its code of ethics, PETport has markers that it uses to identify suspicious business opportunities, and rejects business when it feels the need, in keeping with its standards and vision. For more information about PETport and its services, visit: www.petport.co.za.

About Relocation Africa:

Relocation Africa Group is Africa’s premier Relocation and Immigration Service provider. With over 20 years of experience, and operations in 48 countries across the continent, Relocation Africa has the expertise to assist you with your mobility, immigration, research, and remuneration needs.

For more information, visit: www.relocationafrica.com, or email marketing@relocationafrica.com.

The expat ‘six month slump’

When the euphoria wears thin; the 6 month slump

When you type ‘6-month slump’ into Google, the first thing you find is lots of information about nursing mums. No doubt a very important and emotive issue – but not the one we’re here to discuss.

Dig a little deeper through the hundreds of search results and you’ll start to get closer to our concern; you’ll find that 6 months is the make or break time for new relationships, the point at which more than 50% of people fail their New Year’s resolution, the end of the metaphorical ‘honeymoon period’ for a new job, a new house… and of course a new Country.

So, what’s so special about six months and what goes wrong?

Human nature

We use optimism to generate excitement, enthusiasm and energy.

As an intelligent and rational species, we distract ourselves from things that might cause us concern by keeping busy. Avoidance comes naturally; rather than analyse our feelings and consider what might go wrong right from the beginning of a project, most of us will choose to throw ourselves into it head first and determine that optimism will win the day. If we didn’t, we wouldn’t have achieved half as much as we have as a species, so this is actually a good thing!

We use optimism to generate excitement, enthusiasm and energy… all great attributes that help us to sail through the planning and execution of new endeavours. The trouble starts when the ‘honeymoon period’ ends and the excitement and initial enthusiasm give way to routine. New relationships give way to noticing flaws in the object of our affection; new jobs become just jobs; new years’ resolutions become somewhat boring and we lose sight of our objectives and new homes just aren’t new and exciting anymore.

Expat euphoria

After the initial dizzy heights of infatuation, it tapers off to a more comfortable, satisfying emotion.

Is exactly what it says on the tin… the euphoria (elation, joy) that is felt by expats immediately after their adrenaline-soaked relocation. All the planning and worrying paid off and YOU. MADE. IT! You have a fabulous new home, a new environment to explore and so much unpacking and organising to do that it can keep you busy and fulfilled for months… about 6 of them to be almost precise.

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17 Reasons Why Every Foreigner Must Visit Kenya Before 2016 Is Over

– Kenyans on Twitter reminisced about some 2016 trends, giving them a hilarious spin.

– They used these reasons to tell foreigners, and clueless people, why they should visit Kenya.

It’s the holidays and everyone is in a relaxed, partying mood. Summer bunnies are jetting in and Team Mafisi are gravitating towards them.

13 hilarious reasons why Kenyans are DEMANDING foreigners visit Kenya

But then there are those who are still shying away but have been keenly following Kenyan news as they think about if they should turn up in Kenya.

Well, here are some of the hilarious reasons why Kenyans are inviting foreigners to visit their country and see wonders only Kenyans can hack:

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