Are you planning a trip out of the country? You should beware of unlicensed travel agencies.

This warning coming directly from Nigerian aviation regulator, the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority, NCAA.

The NCAA wants all intending travelers to stop patronising unregistered travel agencies.

According to the regulator, the warning became necessary in view of a recent increase in reports of fraudulent ticketing practices by unregistered travel agencies.

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In a statement signed by its General Manager, Public Relations, Sam Adurogboye, on Sunday, the NCAA said “the Nigeria Civil Aviation Regulations (Nig.CARs) 2015, Part 18.9.1 (111), prohibits the undertaking of the business of travel agency by any person in Nigeria, without a certificate of registration or licence issued by the authority, upon fulfilment of certain requirements, including that an applicant submits evidence of membership of the National Association of Nigeria Travel Agents.

“In addition, Section 30 (4) of the Civil Aviation Act 2006 empowers the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority to regulate, supervise and monitor the activities of travel agents in Nigeria.”

The NCAA stated that based on reports of sharp practices by unregistered travel agencies, it had directed all duly registered travel agencies to display their certificates of registration or licences in all their outlets.

It added that there were about 150 travel agencies on its register and applicants must fulfill both the International Air Transport Association and the NCAA requirements to be registered.

“The NCAA therefore reiterates that prospective passengers should do business only with travel agencies registered with the regulatory authority,” the NCAA said.