Home Travel Agencies NANTA VP Lagos launches TRAVEL HUB to halt faceless briefcase agents, touting….

NANTA VP Lagos launches TRAVEL HUB to halt faceless briefcase agents, touting….

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……redeem the credibility of genuine and professional travel practitioners

The Vice-President, Lagos, National Association of Nigerian Travel Agencies, NANTA, has come up with an initiative tagged Travel HUB to halt touting in the industry.

The idea is to continue to say no to faceless briefcase agents that tout the industry, many of whom unsuspecting travellers have fallen scam-victims to. 

It is also to redeem the credibility of genuine and professional travel practitioners continuously battered by frequent reports of high incidences of fraud in the industry. 

At a media briefing in Lagos, Mr. Yinka Folami, (NANTA VP Lagos and Chief Executive of Travel & Logistics Centre Limited and a member of Travel HUB), said, the HUB initiative is by industry passionate practitioners who have observed the trends (pre and post Covid 19) and decided to invest in taking Travel Agency off the streets, into physical and virtual offices with credible location details and identity. 

Folami stated that, unknown to the travelling public, many of us credible travel agencies are heavily invested in training, capital, and capacity and do not deserve the negative perception. 

He was emphatic that, “Ticketing is a detailed art that requires professional service inclination and consulting approach. The Travel Agent therefore needs to be found in a ‘good place’ and not on the street’”.

According to him, this comes at no direct overhead costs to young, upcoming, and credible travel practitioners that are passionate about the travel industry.
“In clear terms, TRAVEL HUB is a collaborative travel agency platform that provides physical and virtual office spaces/facilities to upcoming and credible agencies at no cost. The HUB aggregates the collaborative purchases of airline tickets and other related travel products, and coordinates the professional conduct of members for regulatory compliance”. 

Explaining further, he said, the Travel HUB also supports members at times of need through a credibly established cooperative society (Esusu) and access to HMO. Hub members are fondly referred to as Hubbers.
“Travel HUB is an aggregator, in response to the need for collaboration and for strong conversations in the industry. Travel HUB is a strong bridge to success in the travel industry”.

Folami goes on to list the features of Travel HUB under the following benefit categories:
1) Collective Platform• Collaboration; speak with one voice• Free Office Facility & Work Stations & Meeting Room• Capacity2) Training & Operations• Continuous Training• Shared Learning• In-house GDS Support• Airline Briefings and Incentives to Hub Agents• Aggregation of Best Fares • Best Travel Buys (Tour, Visa, Protocol)3) Finance & Administration• Finance Advisory• Support for full Regulatory Compliance (NANTA, NCAA, IATA, SCUML etc)• Electronic Pass/Professional Identity (Chip enabled)• Zero Bank Guarantee4) Welfare• Hub Catering Service• Free First Level HMO• Thrift & Cooperative Society (Esusu); voluntary• KYC

In response, Mr. Dayo Adeola (a veteran in Travel, and the current BOT Chairman of the National Association of Nigeria Travel Agencies) said that the idea is not entirely new, but that the unique point is that Travel HUB is more focussed on the strength and growth of the upcoming agents referred to in the industry as Sub-Agents. 

“The key take-out here is ‘One Voice’, which is strong and commendable. He viewed that Travel HUB deserves applause, and that travel agency will certainly get more interesting post Covid 19”.  

The idea of the Travel HUB was further endorsed by Mr. Wale Olaoye (a security expert, and CEO Halogen Group) who is a stickler for verifiable identity. In his words “the logic is simple, I am a frequent traveler myself, before you part with your money, do your KYC”.  Passengers on their part are advised not to patronize any travel agent that does not have clear identity traceable to a credible location and trade association like NANTA…that simple!

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