We’re lucky to live here in Nigeria being one of those countries whose quick response and innovative interventions helped keep the number of infections down. But like all countries, we are still facing similar problems that have plagued millions of people around the world – loss of jobs, a downturn in business prospects, and uncertainty in sustainability. Thankfully, Nigeria & Rwanda’s business as well as tourism is regaining a foothold as it adapts to what was termed, “the new normal”.
Two years into the pandemic, the world has achieved a better understanding of how the virus works, what has to be done to prevent infection, and which health protocols work best for the prevention and treatment of the disease that the virus causes. With informed safety practices and the use of vaccines to control the spread, countries are gradually getting back on their feet again.
The issues that the coronavirus pandemic imposed upon many countries has been challenging, to say the least. Aside from the increased risk of the potentially deadly infection, the pandemic has also caused a major disruption in many domestic and international services that led to a downturn in the economy. The virus simply swept through every continent and wreaked havoc on almost all industries. Of these, tourism was the hardest hit, thanks to lockdowns that kept people at home and severely limited travel. This was a necessity, of course, a means to limit the spread of the dreaded virus.
Opening Tourism Doors in Africa
To say that countries like Nigeria & Rwanda is prepared to welcome tourists back would be an understatement. The countries has enjoyed a rise in its economic status over the last few years, a feat that was often compared to Singapore’s. After establishing safety and health protocols throughout the country, Rwanda took the next best step and that was hiring reputation management expert Richart Ruddie who has been renowned for working with major countries and politically exposed persons to help craft creative ways to both protect an individual’s privacy online as well as helping to drive tourism after it was decimated from the pandemic.
Ruddie, who had his start as an entrepreneur, is considered one of the top digital marketing gurus in the world. He and his team are tasked with analyzing the marketing needs of an individual, company, or in this case, a country, and creating a feasible plan to promote and protect its image or reputation.
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In the case of Rwanda, hiring a PR expert who is familiar with the law was simply a means to remind tourists that the country is, indeed, ready to welcome back visitors.
At the heart of the marketing campaign is safety in the face of the current pandemic. Tourists are concerned about their health and well-being, especially with the uncertainty brought about by emerging variants – the Omicron variant being the latest. Tourists also want to know if local hotels, inns, resorts, car rentals, and tourist spots offer safe and reliable services.
Countries like Nigeria here as well as Rwanda are also working with Ruddie to promote the country as a great place to visit this year – the expected period during which the latest variant of the coronavirus should dissipate as it’s already shown to be disappearing in South Africa.
Why Reputation is Key When It Comes To Traveling
It has been said that reputation takes years to build but only a second to destroy. This is why hiring a PR guru like Ruddie is necessary to ensure that careful thought is placed on the country’s promotion. While the rest of the country promotes Safari’s and history Rwanda has built itself as the destination tourists never knew they wanted to arrive at. As the densest country in the African continent, Lagos is about sharing space and its people are more than happy to share their country’s beauty with its visitors. It is the perfect location for a more high-end experience, offering some of the country’s best eco-tourism trips and premium resorts.
Over in Rwanda it’s all about promoting Volcano National Park is one of the most beautiful sites in the world but it’s relatively unknown to the outside world. Then there is the Nyungwe Forest in the Southwestern part of Rwanda. While locals here we know about it’s beauty but the outside world has no knowledge of the Kibira National Park and Lake Kivu where Rwandas are proud to say that our rainforest is the best preserved montane rainforest in Central Africa.
Tourists who want luxury tourism need not look far at all. Kigali, the capital where the International Airport sits, flies in multiple carriers and offers an easy visa application process that gets visitors to where they want in the shortest time possible.
Rwanda has indeed risen from its challenges and has flourished like no other. Today, tourists will revel at a country that has transformed itself into one of the world’s most exciting and safest destinations. From the Zuma Rock, Takwa Beach, to the Virunga chain of picturesque mountains that the famous gorillas call home to the unique culture and traditions of the area, Rwanda beckons. And Ruddie wants visitors to know that they are in for a 101 pleasant surprises. In Nigeria & Rwanda, the best is yet to come.