Government of Ghana’s flagship campaign Year of Return has been described by stakeholders as successful as the country has welcomed and still welcoming a remarkable number of tourists.
In a video by the Year of Return committee sighted by Jetsanza.com, hoteliers told the committee that they have recorded a significant increase in bookings. The Sales and Marketing manager of Labadi Beach Hotel, David Eduaful, revealed business was “massive in August” and hinted that hotels in Accra are fully booked for December because of the Year of Return.
President Akufo Addo declared the year 2019 as Year of Return, a symbolic year marking mark 400 years since the first set of slaves were taken from the coast of Ghana to Europe and America.
Since the launch, celebrities including actor Michael Jai White, Boris Kodjoe, Anthony Anderson, Steve Harvey and Idris Elba have all visited Ghana to take part in the celebration.
Valentine Appiah, Sales and Marketing Manager of Elmina Beach Resort said the initiative has had a great impact in their operations and it’s the greatest idea the tourism industry has had as his facility “is doing twice the figure last year”.
Though Panafest and Emancipation Day festivals welcome a lot of tourists, Michael Orleans of Torchlight Tours admitted that his company now handles five to twelve tours daily instead of the usual one or two tours.
The various airline plying the Ghana – US routes are also making good sales as Country Manager of South African Airways, Gloria Wilkinson Mensah, confirms that South African Airways has seen a significant increase in bookings on its Washington DC – Accra route. She attributed the increase in bookings to various events on the Yaear of return calendar including Jamestown to Jamestown and Afrochella which takes place in December.
A host of activities have been lined up to celebrate the Year of Return (some of which have already been celebrated and others yet to be). The most important aspect of the project is to ensure Africans-Americans visit Ghana and experience the culture, tradition and beauty of the home of their forefathers.
Ghanaian rapper Sarkodie has yesterday been named Ambassador of the Year of Return. He is expected to use his global influence to make the already successful Year of Return a more ‘Sarkcess-ful’ one.