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Top Belgian travel agencies visit Destination Gambia

02 Nov 2015

At least 60 Belgian travel agencies Friday night arrived in Destination Gambia for a FAM TRIP (Familiarization Tour) on the Smiling Coast of Africa.

The large number of travel agencies from Belgium to The Gambia as described by Benjamin A Roberts, Minister of Tourism and Culture (MoTC) and officials of The Gambia Tourism Board (GTBoard) and SN Brussels Airlines country representative was ‘one of its kind’ in the history of tourism in The Gambia.

The 60 members of the sales and ticketing agencies is headed by Christine Van Nuffel, PR Executive – Glenaki Tourism Industry Consultancy (PR Firm representing The Gambia in Brussels) was warmly welcomed to the Smiling Coast by Benjamin A Roberts, Minister of Tourism and Culture accompanied by Bakary Jammeh, Chairman Board of Directors GTBoard; AbdoullahHydara, Director General, Adama Njie, Director of Marketing – GTBoard and other officials joined by Kevin Constant, Country Manager – Brussels Airlines upon their arrival in the country.

The visit of the 60 travel agencies was jointly organised and made possible by Glenaki Tourism Industry Consultancy through The Gambia Tourism Board in collaboration with the Brussels Airlines with the aim of knowing the country and sell the Destination Gambia in Belgium and beyond.

Glenaki Tourism Industry Consultancy is a Belgium-based private-owned Public Relation (PR) and Marketing Agency specialised in travel and tourism. They are the GTBoard consultancy agency based in Belgium and specialise in different levels of tourism promotion in terms of press, PR and communication, travel trade activities and consumer campaigns.

Their job for the Gambia Tourism Board (GTBoard) include promoting and increasing awareness of The Gambia in the Benelux in order to bring more tourists to the country, with the aim of extending the season.

The visit of these travel agencies is a privilege for The Gambia tourism industry taking into consideration of the situation of tourism industry in 2014/15 tourism season in the West African region concerning Ebola virus outbreak whereby The Gambia was affected on its arrival despite there was no case of Ebola. Their visit among other things will help to mitigate the negative publication of Ebola by the Western Media and raise the confidence level of tourist to The Gambia in Belgium and beyond.

Kevin Constant, Country Representative – Brussels Airlines in The Gambia expressed belief that the visit of the large numbers of the travel agencies to Destination Gambia will give a different perspective of West Africa and what The Gambia, Smiling Coast of Africa, is all about especially in terms of different products and its uniqueness.

Minister Roberts welcomed the ticketing agencies to the Smiling Coast and thanked Brussels Airlines with Glenaki Tourism Industry Consultancy and The GTBoard for this laudable initiative to promote Destination Gambia on this magnitude.

He used the opportunity to expressed his Ministry’s appreciation to the Travel Agencies for coming to The Gambia and hoped to receive their feedbacks through the PR and Marketing firm – Glenaki Tourism Industry Consultancy as it will help the sector to endeavor and make the destination a truly tourism paradise which is the Government’s aspiration.

There are lots of advantages awaiting the destination and the parties involved in the industry if it is been sold by the travel agencies. This according to the Minister means there will be more business for Brussels Airlines as they will airlift more tourists to The Gambia; the PR and Marketing firm would have done their jobs while the country would have been exposed and The Gambia as a tourism destination would benefit from tourism which is an industry that everyone relies on.

It has been presumed by the Minister that it will be a continuous process as the collaboration will continue and comes in variant forms hence the Glenaki Tourism Industry Consultancy has led in this initiative by partnering with Brussels Airlines. This is with the assurance that there will be some other tour operators and PR Marketing firms that will undertake the same initiative.

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