Thank God for Uber and the fact that we can get to anyplace we want to go to without any hassle and at very affordable prices too!
People always talk about the Uber drivers but…what about the passengers? lol, the riders?! Ask any Uber driver and he’d probably tell you we are spot on! Here are the different types of riders that the Uber driver has had to drive to some place or the other!
The Quiet one
This is the ideal type of rider. They’re usually quiet, mind their own business and only talk when they are spoken to. Most of the time, they sit at the back and play with their phones for as long as the ride will take. No stress.
They are too friendly. They are the ones who’d usually ignore the backseat and sit right by the driver. Front seat. They will chat with the driver like they’re old friends and by the time they get to their drop off point, they’d know the driver’s story, what they ate and everything their ancestors have ever done.
The Snappy Rider
No one likes this type of rider. Why? They’re rude! They get into the car, like they’re doing the driver a favour and proceed to complain about everything!!! If the driver even tries to start a conversation, they will snap at him like he/she offered something weird! Chances are, they’re definitely on their phone tweeting about a nonexistent ‘terrible’ experience.
Space To Space Rider
There’s always that rider who’s always on their phone. If you pay attention…you’d know a lot about their friends cos they gossip!!!!!!!! They will talk on the phone for hours… from the moment the driver picks them up all the way to their stop and it’s rarely ever any harmless conversation! Gossip nkoaaa. It’s actually entertaining. Very!
These ones sit in the car and eat saaaaa!!! We aren’t talking about snacks. We are talking about food ankasa. The kind that sits in the uber and eats like they’re in their mother’s kitchen. They will finish the food and it’s very likely that they will leave the empty packs in the car or drop pieces of the food in the car. Stress.
The Lovey-dovey Riders
This one is quite common. Couples that take the Uber and just snuggle and forget the driver even exists. If the driver doesn’t speak up…they will forget and assume they are in their bedroom and ermm well…God forbid anyone does that.
The Party Animals
Friday nights, these ones are a definite! These are riders who will get in the car as a group and talk loudly and excitedly till they reach their destination. They are usually drunk. Very drunk. And the driver will be treated to bad odour, forced conversations and by force laughter at their dry jokes till they get off.
The sleepy rider will sleep so much that the driver will have to constantly wake them up to make sure they are alive and when the driver gets to the destination…lol the driver better pray to God that the person is not a deep sleeper or else…how will you wake them up to get down?!!
Despite all of these characters they encounter day in day out, Uber drivers have a reason to constantly smile nowadays thanks to Old Mutual Life Assurance.
As a driver, when the unfortunate happens, you get to benefit from a medical expense cover that is to the tune of GHs12,500, a funeral expense policy that is to the tune of GHs50,000 and GHs5,000 for funeral expenses.
That’s not all (yeah we know some of you said “is that all?’’). In the event of permanent disability, you get to benefit from a lump sum of Ghs50,000 depending on the severity of the accident.
Let’s not forget the icing on the cake, whereas a driver you get a Ghs50 daily payment when the doctor certifies that you are unfit to work for a period of up to 30 days.
Stay safe out there though, it’s the most important thing!
Ghana Is Being Heralded As The Next Big Tourist Destination. Here’s Why
When some of the most well-known faces from the African diaspora arrived for a recent vacation in Accra, Ghana, it looked like just another gathering of famous people.
Actors including Idris Elba rubbed shoulders with supermodel Naomi Campbell, TV sports presenter Mike Hill, and author Luvvie Ajayi.
Behind this meet-up of box office stars, fashion royalty and top creatives is a focused and ambitious strategy to make Ghana a major tourist destination.
The country recently unveiled a 15-year-long tourism plan that seeks to increase the annual number of tourists to Ghana from one million to eight million per year by 2027.
Ghana's travel industry is projected to raise $8.3 billion a year by 2027, plus associated benefits, according to the plan.
VIP guests attended events chaired by Ghana's President Nana Akufo-Addo, the architect of the plan to boost tourism and diversify the country's economy through reaching out to its diaspora, while guests took part in conferences, festivities and trips across the country to discover its unique and sobering heritage.
The primary purpose of the festival was to forge closer ties between Ghana, the African continent and those of African descent living elsewhere.
It's 400 years since the first African slaves were taken from countries like Ghana to mainland America, marking the start of the trans-Atlantic slave trade route. This timing is based on the first recorded landing of a ship carrying Africans in Virginia in August 1619.
An estimated 75% of slave dungeons on the west coast of Africa were in Ghana -- millions of people were taken and transported on ships that departed from Ghanaian ports.
President Akufo-Addo's Year of Return announcement pointed to Ghana's tragic legacy as a reason for diaspora descendants to return and learn about this chapter of history.
The celebrities who attended the Full Circle Festival were taken on guided tours of the slave dungeons.
"Every person of color needs to get on this pilgrimage," said actor and co-organizer Boris Kodjoe who is of Ghanaian descent. "They need to experience this journey and get in touch with their emotional heritage, walk through the dungeons and see the 'door of no return,'" he told CNN.
Marketing rockstar Bozoma Saint John -- who has a series of marketing coups like Beyonce's halftime Super Bowl show under her belt -- worked with Kodjoe, inviting 100 of the most influential members of the African diaspora to party with them at the festival over Christmas and New Year.
Saint John, who works for global media conglomerate Endeavor and previously had high profile roles with Uber and Apple Music, says the project is close to her heart.
"As long as you have melanin and you are seeking a return to Africa, it is a must," she told CNN.
"I really felt that I wanted to show people the country I know and love. I take it as a personal mission and will use my professional weight to help the mission."
Saint John says that returning members of the diaspora can expect joy on their trip to Ghana as well as moments of solemnity. Skyscrapers and restaurants feature prominently in her promotional material.
"All the fun things you can do in Nice, Bali, Ibiza, you can do here in Ghana too," she added.
Year of return
The celebrity-attended Full Circle Festival was the opening act of a broader Year of Return, announced by President Akufo-Addo in September 2018.
Speaking about the year ahead at Washington's National Press Club Akufo-Addo said Ghana would open its "arms even wider to welcome home our brothers and sisters in what will become a birthright journey home for the global African family."
The Year of Return includes a music festival, an investment conference targeting diaspora Ghanaians, and the Right to Return initiative, encouraging African-Americans to seek citizenship in Ghana.
This year-long initiative builds on a long tradition of looking outwards.
Ghana, the first sub-Saharan African country to win independence from colonial rule, has a history of pursuing ties with Africans overseas. It dates back to the country's first President Kwame Nkrumah, whose vision of pan-Africanism included alliances with diaspora communities.
Nkrumah enjoyed warm relations with African-American icons such as Muhammad Ali and Malcolm X, who both traveled to Ghana to meet him. Writer Maya Angelou spent time in the country after its independence and civil rights leader W.E.B. Du Bois is buried in Accra.
Ghana has also sought to incentivize diaspora returnees through legislation such as the Right of Abode law of 2000 that allows people of African descent to apply for the right to stay in the country indefinitely.
It was followed by the Joseph Project in 2007 that encouraged Africans in the diaspora to return, officials have compared it to Israel's Law of Return that allows Jews to become citizens.
These initiatives have had some success. An estimated 3,000 African-Americans had permanently settled in Ghana by 2014.
By the time Saint John is finished with marketing Ghana to the world, she is hopeful it will have knock-on impact across the region and wants to reshape people's perceptions.
"We are going to use Ghana as a gateway to the rest of the continent," she said.
"There are beaches in Kenya as well as snow-capped mountains. We need to tell the story of all the amazing opportunities Africa has to offer."
24 Hours In: Accra
There’s plenty of things to do to fill 24 hours in Accra, Ghana, from enjoying a traditional breakfast with locals to getting a history lesson in the Old Town to exploring the city’s cosmopolitan side by night. Best of all, you can do it all by foot, since the areas listed below are all within walking distance of each other.
Early morning: 7 – 9am
A good way to start your day before the heat and traffic becomes too much to bear is to head straight into the heart of Accra, to Makola Market. This market is a typical African urban market and is from where all items are bought, sold, and distributed throughout the country. There is a little bit of everything here, so be warned, it can be a little overwhelming, but it’s also a great place for interacting with locals.
Start by walking along the main streets on the periphery of the market. For breakfast, there are quite a few tasty options. Stop at at one of the many food stands featuring piles of eggs and loaves of bread, and order up an omelet with toast. Some of these stands offer guacamole or smashed pear on bread, as well. Fruit is plentiful, with the best mangoes, pineapples, watermelons, and papaya (popo) you’ll find anywhere. The local favourite, though, is bananas and peanuts (groundnuts), often sold from the top of a woman’s head.
If you are feeling a little more adventurous, you can try a local breakfast treat, waakye (pronounced ‘watch-eh’), which is black eyed peas with rice and your choice of other toppings. You can get it topped with spaghetti noodles, boiled eggs, gari (ground cassava), salad, tomato stew (which is practically a necessity to counter the dry rice and beans), spicy shito (roasted chili peppers, onion, garlic, and ground shrimp), or beef or chicken. If you’re not sure where or how to order waakye, just ask some of the locals — they’ll be more than happy to help, especially if you tell them it’s your first time in Ghana and tasting waakye!
In the morning, Ghanaians typically drink tea, coffee, or Milo (hot chocolate). The egg seller should have any of these options for you. You can also look around for guys with red Nescafe carts and large thermoses, who can make you a cup of coffee. Yes, unfortunately it’s instant coffee only; there isn’t much of a fresh coffee drinking culture in Accra.
After sustaining yourself, you can now get lost in the market, although don’t expect to find much in the way of crafts or souvenirs. Instead, you’ll find items that Ghanaians use in their everyday lives, such as food, clothing, cooking and kitchen items, beauty products, and so on.
Morning: 9am – 12pm
From Makola Market, you have two options: you can either head north up Kojo Thompson Road or Barnes Road to the National Museum of Ghana, or go southwest along Kojo Thompson Road and John Atta Mills High Street into James Town and Old Accra.
The National Museum offers great perspective into the cultures of Ghana and West Africa, aided with artifacts, pictures, sculptures, and traditional art.
James Town and Old Accra are a wonderful mix of old and new coming together. There are a number of historic sites that blend into the surroundings, as the community has grown around them over the years. There are two forts, Ussher Fort and Fort James (although you’d probably be just fine with only seeing one of them). They are both colonial era forts that were formerly used as prisons. In 2005, Ussher Fort was used to house Sudanese refugees, and still has some interesting graffiti from this time. Fort James was most recently used as one of Ghana’s prisons, but is now decommissioned. You can tour either of these but be warned that both are in a pretty rundown state.
Down the street a little farther to the west is the James Town Lighthouse. You can climb this lighthouse for a nominal fee and get one of the best views of Accra, but note that it’s not for the lighthearted as it requires climbing an old ladder through a narrow space. From the lighthouse, you can descend back to the street and visit the nearby local fishing beach. You’ll see how the fisherman go out to and return from sea here. Most of the surrounding community still relies on fishing as its primary income.
From here you can walk some of the narrow avenues of James Town and see local street art mixed with colonial architecture. Every August there is the Chale Wote Street Art Festival, which brings together music, dancing, street art, food, and just an overall great time.
Midday: 12 – 2pm
No matter where you went for your previous stop, you’ll be very close to the beach, which is a great place to take a break with a cold drink and enjoy lunch. Our pick is Osekan Bar (pronounced ‘oh-say-can’), which sits on a cliff over the water off John Atta Mills High Street. At the end of a football pitch at the beach side near the cocoa house, there is an arched entryway and stairs that lead down to Osekan. It is a lovely spot to sit outside and get a nice breeze and view of the water and fishing boats all around. The area also holds historical significance, as it was formally a very sacred spot for the Ga people, and there are still several shrines as well as rites and festivals that happen annually.
Food at Osekan is typically of the local variety. A couple of favourites are the jollof rice and chicken, or ‘Red Red’. Jollof rice is a spicy, yet very flavourful, tomato vegetable-based rice. Red Red (named for the colour of the dish) is a spicy bean stew with fried plantains. You can also add fish or chicken to your Red Red. They have the local varieties of cold beer: Star, Club, and Guldar, which are all light English-style lagers.
Afternoon: 2 – 6pm
After lunch, head to the nearby Kwame Nkrumah Mausoleum, where history buffs can learn about the first president of Ghana and see a memorial to this great man, as well as a small museum with photographs.
A little further on is the Accra Cultural Centre (or Art Market). This is where you’ll find all the Ghanaian souvenirs and gifts to take home: paintings, art, jewellery, drums, carvings, and more. This place can be a little hectic and the people persistent, so if you are only browsing, stay strong and don’t get pressured into any purchases you don’t want to make. If you already know what souvenirs you want, it might be a good idea to find a quieter shopkeeper on the fringes and ask for help in navigating the market (for a tip). This will keep the other sellers at bay and also help you to get a good price and quality goods.
Not too far to the east of the art market is Independence Square, where there are some Soviet-style national monuments that might be good for a quick picture.
For the next stop, it’s probably worthwhile to grab a cab to Oxford Street, to see the more modern, economic hub of the city. This is the trendy part of Accra, with many shops, stalls, bars, restaurants, nightclubs, and casinos.
fountain at the mausoleum in accra
Evening: 6pm until late
Lucky for you, you’re now already in the centre of Accra’s nightlife. Dinner, drinks, and entertainment are all around! And since by now you will have tried you fill of local food earlier in the day, we think you might enjoy trying something a little more international and getting a feel for Accra’s cosmopolitan side.
Osu is the favourite area for taking it all in. It’s easy to walk around and try out different places or just settle into a place you like. The true nightlife can start a little later, typically around midnight, and go all the way until 6am.
For dinner, some of our favourite options are Monsoon (sushi), Mama Mia (Italian and pizzas), Frankie’s (Lebanese fast food), Tip Top (Chinese), Asanka Locals (Ghanian), Duncans (awesome banku, which is lightly fermented corn dough, and tilapia with a pepper salsa), Fire Fly (best burger and fajitas), Sunshine Salad Bar (Indian, salads, and sandwiches), Heritage (Indian and Chinese), and Papaye (Ghanaian fast food with rice and chicken).
For cold drinks and music, you can find so many places, but there are a few that are especially popular with locals and travellers:
Container Bar. Just opposite Papaye on Oxford Street, this bar is aptly named for being run out of a container. It’s wildly popular with both locals and visitors, with affordable drinks, outdoor seating, loud music, and great people-watching.
Republic Bar. This is a very trendy place but not overrun or too pricey. It plays good music and is popular with both internationals and locals. It also has a great mix of cocktails and local beer on draft. You might see your first African hipsters.
EPO’s. This spot is very popular with locals, and has outdoor and rooftop seating. It can be a bit of a trip to find (you’ll have to venture down alleyways and might reach a few dead ends), but the place is always packed and there’s lots of cold beer at local prices.
Clubs. There are a few clubs around, such as Hot Gossip, Duplex, Bella Roma, and Fire Fly. They are all high-class affairs and you will need to have long pants and closed-toe dress shoes. No sneakers or flip-flops allowed.
If Osu isn’t doing it for you and you would like some live music and more of a lounge atmosphere, a quick ride in a taxi can take you to either Club 233 or the Afrikiko Leisure Centre. Club 233 has live jazz on the weekends, and meals, with outdoor seating. Afrikiko has a number of different restaurants in the complex, and usually has live music and dancing, also with outdoor seating. From there, go back to your hotel and rest up for another day. You’ve deserved it!
Don’t have time for a full 24 hours in Accra? No worries, we’ve got the speedy version for a shorter layover.
Note that because of traffic and the extra time needed for immigration (if you’re flying internationally), you’ll probably need at least five hours to get into the city and still have time to see the sites. Depending on the time of day, it can take anywhere from 15 minutes to an hour to get to the city centre. Taking a taxi is the most affordable and efficient option from the airport — a ride to the city centre will cost you about USD 8.
If you’re in Accra in the morning or early afternoon, you’re in luck, as mid-morning is the best time to avoid city traffic. Visit Makola Market, Accra Mall, or the art stalls around the Tetteh Quarshie interchange, all of which will give you a real taste of local flavour in this modern African city. Alternately, take some time at Labadi Beach. A beach layover would be awesome if you don’t mind flying with a little sand in your pants! You’ll need to spend about two hours in the city to see these sites.
If your layover has you in Accra in the evening, you won’t be able to do much sightseeing (the city gets pretty quiet), but you could check out the local bars, clubs, or even a night market. Grab dinner from one of the places mentioned above, and enjoy an outdoor meal or drink with a cool evening breeze. You’ll need about four hours in order to enjoy yourself and not rush through a meal.
Source: Urban Adventures.
The 8 Shopping Malls In Ghana; Cost Of Building, Owners & More!
Accra’s landscape is changing—slowly, perhaps,but certainly. As economies rise and a shopping culture emerges, the retail opportunity is greater than even before. If you want to enjoy some retail therapy across the country,the following malls are at your disposal.
- Accra Mall
The Accra Mall is a state-of-the-art retail and shopping center in Accra, Ghana, located on the Tetteh Quarshie Interchange adjacent to the Tema Motorway. The mall was commissioned on July 4, 2008. It is one of the most modern shopping malls in West Africa and the first large-scale shopping centre in Ghana. The mall is an enclosed, fully air-conditioned shopping centre. It has 20,322 square metres of retail space with parking for over 900 cars. The Accra Mall accommodates 65 line-shops and 9 restaurants of which 30% are operated by Ghanaian retailers.
Project Cost: $36 Million
Built By: Actis (London)
Owners: Owusu Akyaw And Family/Actis, Now Owned By Atterbury(South African commercial and retail property developer) and Sanlam(financial services group)
2. A&C Mall/Square
A&C Mall is a privately owned business and the first of its kind. 18 years ago, A&C Mall set the standard for mixed use retail shopping centres in Ghana.
A&C Mall continues to grow and transform from year to year. The complex comprises of a shopping centre, a business plaza, a fitness health club, kiddy ground, and a mixed use space boasting a top UK university, retail stores, services and banking facilities covering about 6000sqm.
As a one stop shop for groceries, entertainment, healthcare, great food and shopping; the establishment provides clients with unmatched convenience and accessiblity.
A&C Mall, “It’s All Here!”.
Project Cost: N/A
Built By: A&C Development (Ghana)
Owners: Andrew & Cecilia Asamoah (Ghana)
3. Marina Mall
Marina Mall is a dual commercial development owned by Marina Market, a daughter company of Marina Group founded in Burkina Faso. It is strategically positioned, proximity to the International Airport, Airport Residential Area, Cantonments, Golden Tulip Hotel, Holiday Inn, the upcoming Marriot Hotel and the other offices in the Airport City area.
The mall has a six level Tower for offices with an approximate area of 3,250 sqm occupied by Nestle Central and West Africa, Technip Ghana/UK and Hess Ghana Exploration. With more than 45 outlets and a gross leasable area of 9,000 sqm spread across three floors, Marina Mall features a mix of designer fashion brands, kid’s entertainment place, huge supermarket and a varied food court. Marina mall was established in the year 2013.
Project Cost: N/A
Built By: Marina Market
Owners: Marina Group (Burkina Faso)
4. Junction Shopping Center/Mall
The Junction Mall is the biggest mall in the Tema area. The mall is located at the Nungua Police Barrier and has on its premises grocery shops, liquor shops, electronic shops, boutiques, supermarkets, restaurants and eateries, a pharmacy, cafe, Forex bureau, saloon, banks and telco companies.
Established in November 2014 ,the mall currently employs about 500 people and is a one stop shop for shopping and an ideal place for family entertainment and a tourist attraction. The mall which covers an area of 11,597m2 ,houses big name shops like Shoprite, Mrp, Jel, Woodin, Compu-Ghana (Samsung), Bata, Hisense etc. which stock products ranging from groceries, electronics, clothing and textiles, shoes etc. The food court of the mall also has eateries such as Barcelos, KFC, Pizza Inn, Chicken Inn and Chix and Ribs.
The Junction Mall is a great haven for the kids as they can have lots of fun at the various playground facilities at their disposal at the mall. The Mall has a beautiful surrounding and provides a serene atmosphere for shopping and hanging out. Bring the whole family to the Junction mall and have a wonderful experience.
Project Cost: $33.7 Million
Built By: RMDWestPort
Owners: RMDWestPort (South Africa)
5. West Hills Mall
West Hills Mall is a 27 700m² mall with a total of 65 shops incorporating popular South African brands as well as a mix of local and international retailers, restaurants, banks and a cinema complex.
The mall is situated on the newly completed Cape Coast highway on the western side of Accra, 20km from the existing Accra Mall in the east. Excellent access is provided via a dedicated underpass bridge structure from the highway to the shopping centre. It forms the gateway into the greater Accra region from western Ghana.
The mall opened in October 2014 and is anchored by Shoprite, The Palace and Edgars. The proposed second phase will add approximately 7 000m² to the mall, taking it to 34 700m².
Project Cost: $93 Million
Built By: Delico Property Development With Architecture By Mobius Architecture
Owners: SSNIT (Ghana) And Delico Property Development (Mauritius)
6. Oxford Street Mall
GLAHCO’s Oxford Street mall a thirteen-storey shopping mall and hotel complex located on the Cantonments Road, Accra otherwise known as the Oxford Street. The complex has 5,580m2 of retail spaces, 650m2 of restaurants and food courts all served with two underground floors of car parking. Phase two of the project will add a 132 room hotel facility on twelve floors.
Project Cost: $16 Million
Built By: Ghana Libyan Arab Holding Limited (GLAHCO)
Owners: Ghana Libyan Arab Holding Limited (GLAHCO) And The Government Of Ghana
7. Kumasi City Mall
The first phase of Kumasi City Mall is a 18 000m² shopping centre with an excellent mix of local and international retailers. It will be anchored by Shoprite and Game and incorporate 61 shops and restaurants. A five-screen cinema complex is envisioned for the future. To date, Game, Shoprite and Edgars are some of the retailers who have already committed to the development, in addition to a number of other well-known South African and local retailers.
Kumasi City Mall provides a convenient and highly accessible shopping destination to the entire city. The tenant mix will cater for the broadest possible sector of the market.The site is ideally situated on Lake Road, just north of the recently upgraded Eastern Bypass, 6km from the airport and 2.5km from the Kumasi CBD.
Construction commenced in June 2014 and the mall was completed in April 2017.
Kumasi City Mall is Atterbury’s fourth venture in Ghana.
Project Cost: 110 Million
Built By: Delico Property Development
Owners: Delico Property Development (Mauritius), Atterbury Africa Limited (South Africa), Hyprop Investment Limited (South Africa)
8. Achimota Shopping Center/Mall
Atterbury Property’s latest shopping mall development to be complete in Ghana – the R800 million ($60 million) Achimota Retail Centre located in north-eastern Accra – opened its doors to the delight of locals.
The brand new 15,000m² retail destination provides top-quality shopping for the first time on this scale under one roof in this part of the Ghanaian capital.
Achimota Retail Centre is anchored by South Africa’s Shoprite and local Ghanaian food and general merchandise retail chain, Palace. South African and local Ghanaian retail brands part of the tenant mix include Jet, Mr Price, MTN, Nallem, Foods Inn, CompuGhana and KFC, amongst others.
The centre – a single level mall – is home to 51 line stores, offering convenience, retail and fashion brands, as well as a restaurant and food court. It has basement parking for 250 cars and a further 335 open air parking bays.
Located on a prime site in the town of Dome and alongside the Accra-Nsawam Highway, Achimota Retail Centre boasts a contemporary design. Its design includes sustainability features such as grey water harvesting, environmentally conscious landscaping and a building management system. Local Ghanaian architecture firm, Multi Card Consult, designed the mall in a joint venture with South Africa’s Boogertman and Partners.
Project Cost: N/A
Built By: Atterbury Africa
Owners: Atterbury Africa Limited (South Africa)
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