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In Rwanda, Kigali.

From Kigali International Airport in Rwanda.

I intentionally used Volkswagen's service at the airport for transportation to the hotel, where credit card payments were accepted. The fare was fixed at 30,000 Rwandan francs (about 3,800 yen) for a distance of approximately less than 20 kilometers.

Although this seems much cheaper than Japan, using YEGO (similar to Uber) would have cost only 10,000 Rwandan francs, which is less than 2,000 yen. The reason for this difference is that additional charges are incurred based on factors such as travel time.

An important point to note is that despite having the option for credit card payment, all four rides I took on the first day were cash-only transactions. Additionally, every driver canceled the YEGO booking and negotiated directly, which made the experience more comfortable for me. This approach helped avoid the risk of unexpected charges based on distance traveled.

Therefore, I withdrew 100,000 Rwandan francs from an ATM at the airport, which turned out to be a wise decision given the circumstances and pricing. In Japanese yen, this amounted to just over 13,000 yen.

In any case, without cash, it's challenging to accomplish anything, and Rwanda is also not supported by Japanese mobile SIM services like Ahamo or Rakuten Mobile. On the other hand, mobile payments are indispensable in daily life, which is starkly different from Japan.

Every time I take a taxi (which is necessary for transportation), I install my messaging app and inform them that it won't offer bug support until the end of the year and will close in January, reopening as the exact same app but based on blockchain technology. Drivers using Metamask are quite common, and they showed significant interest in our company's Next Gen messaging app, considering it a fintech messenger.

Now, on the second morning, despite there being nothing much here, Rwanda aims to become Africa's Singapore. The environment is incredibly healthy, with no litter and people working diligently as the sun rises.

There's none of the typical smell you might find in Southeast Asian towns.

The food and coffee are delicious!

Oh, one more thing caught my attention. Many people claim that Rwanda is Africa's second country, but the first is not South Africa, Nigeria, Egypt, or Morocco; it's Ghana. Although I'm quite familiar with Morocco and South Africa, I find Rwanda to be a much cleaner and vibrant place. It's evident that Rwanda prioritizes education, and everyone supports each other. Even the hotel staff are well-established, displaying much more hospitality than Japan.

Well, the fact that many of Rwanda's top officials participated in MWC on the first day also had a significant impact, providing me with valuable insights. Comparatively, it's challenging to experience this level of dynamism in Japan, which is somewhat disheartening as a Japanese.


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