... of an Air-time Vendor
Valence Tugirimana, 26, is an airtime vendor based at Kismenti opposite Ndoli Supermarket. He is a resident of Kibagabaga. He wakes up at 5:30 am, takes a bath, dresses up and then heads for work. Valence tells Society Magazine how he spends the rest of his day.
“After dressing up I walk from Kibagabaga to a shop near the Remera stadium where I pick airtime cards and then head to my spot at Kismenti.I make sure I get to Kismenti by 7:15am because there are usually many customers in the morning hours.
There are very few customers between 9:00am and 11:00 am so I usually use that time to interact with friends who also sell credit and other things around the same vicinity.
When it clocks midday, I get back to my spot because lunchtime is very good for business as there are many people buying airtime. As a personal rule, I always have my lunch between 3:00 and 4:00pm because that time is normally dull with no customer at all.
I always have my lunch from any of the restaurants near the stadium or buy a snack from any of the supermarkets around Kismenti.
Evening hours, between 5:00pm and 8:00 pm are also a sensible time for me to make money because that’s the time people leave work and so I walk around looking for buyers.
I have my loyal customers who always come to the spot where I stand to buy airtime. I always wait for them during those hours because they never let me down.
After my busy evening hours, I keep around until midnight as some clients, although not so many, always come within those hours.
On a good day, I make a profit of Rwf 5,000 and on a bad one, I make around Rwf 3,000 at least. My day ends at midnight and that’s when I go home to rest until the next morning and, then go through the same routine all over again.”