Top tips for managing travel in Africa

Despite many African markets seeing promising economic growth and potential for executive travel, they are still vulnerable to ignorance, both inside and outside Africa

So BBT is providing you with top tips on managing travel in Africa…

  • Always check your air routes, as turnover can be huge. An analysis for Buying Business Travel by OAG showed that, this June, over 300 routes had been discontinued compared to the same time last year – yet roughly the same number of new routes had sprung up.
  • Direct flights between two airports? Think again. A would-be one-hour flight fro Luanda to Kinshasa, for example would take a traveller at least 10 hours and possible an overnight stay in a hub airport in South Africa or Kenya, because no bilateral agreement exists between Angola and the DRC.
  • Everything takes a lot longer to organise. Always leave more time (and then some) for a trip: Africa is not in a hurry.
  • Safety concerns are valid, but can be very localised. Don’t just take advice from your travel or security provider, or the Foreign Office – get a first-person account on the ground. Remember, situations change rapidly. Disasters make headline news, yet more mundane issues, such as road accidents and illness, are more likely to floor travellers.
  • The mismatch between perception and reality means that managers can be guilty of overprotecting travellers. With security briefings ringing in their ears, some executives don’t even venture out of their hotel.
  • Africa is one of the most ‘closed’ regions in the world – especially when it comes to the visa situation. This poses a formidable obstacle to business travel within the continent.
  • Flight delays are routine, so book suitable connections. Also, international and domestic terminals can be in two completely separate places, requiring transfers; subsequent cross-town delays, due to heavy and chaotic traffic, are common.

Read the full destination report on Africa here

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