Nigeria can boast of about 100 aircraft in the country’s airline travel market. It is recorded that less than five percent of the population is able to afford air travel as the costs of flights are high.
Therefore, the announcement of the introduction of new airlines into the country’s travel market is one well-received because of the effects it’s expected to have on the industry. Airline travel agents and analysts are already pointing to this development as a factor that could potentially drive down airfares. With new airlines will come more aircraft which will definitely draw down the price if not by 100% but in half. This way millions of Nigerians, including middle-class entrepreneurs and other well-employed citizens, will now be able to afford air travel. Domestic travel rates are at about 35,000 to 45,000 depending on the date and time the flight is booked. However, when new airlines are introduced, there will be more competition which will force the airlines already in operation to halve their prices, which will make millions of Nigerians able to afford airline travels.
Other reasons include safety and comfort. Nigerian roads are increasingly becoming unsafe and Air travel is still the most preferred means of traveling. If more people can afford the costs of air travel. This will invariably result in fewer road travels and fewer accidents.
This article gathers a list of the newest airlines to be introduced in Nigeria and details you need to know about them. Included here is also a list of airlines dating about a few years ago and their history.
5 Newest Airlines in Nigeria (2020)
Green Africa Airways
In February 2020, three new airlines were announced to begin operations in the country. One of which is the Green Africa Airways. The airline was founded on 15 June 2015 and is planned to begin operations in 2020. This airline is to begin with 50 Airbus A220 planes or thereabout in its first year of operation. If this plan works out, the introduction of 50 Airbus planes will create the hugest turn around in Nigeria’s domestic air travel and perhaps in any aviation market in the world. Green Africa Airline will become not only Nigeria’s, but Africa’s biggest by fleet. Followed by Air Peace, which is currently Nigeria’s biggest carrier operating a fleet of 23 planes. Green Africa Airway’s fleet capacity will be more than double that of Air Peace.
United Nigeria Airline
In February 2020, it was announced that Dr. Obiorah Okonkwo, Russian-trained political scientist and business mogul from Ogidi in Anambra State had just concluded basic local and international arrangements for the United Nigeria Airline. Chief Okonkwo, has been a lead investor in real estate in Abuja and is the chief executive officer of Abuja based The Dome Entertainment Limited. He decided to launch his own airlines after wide consultations. It is expected that the new company will bring in nothing less than 10 commercial airplanes for domestic services with the intention of offering International services later. This will also boost the operations of the Nigerian aviation space. Aerokeys, a company that offers services in the aviation sector has undertaken the training of United Nigeria Airline’s crew. The airline was initially set to start operations in April 2020.
Value Jet Airlines
This is a new airline owned by Kunle Soname, the organiser of the first 50km Remo Ultramarathon Race.
This is one of the most recent Airlines asides these three mentioned earlier. Air Peace is a private Nigerian airline founded in 2013. Its head office is located in Lagos State, Nigeria.
Air Peace provides services to the major cities of Nigeria and also flies to several West African destinations and the Middle East. As of May 2019, Air Peace flies to major cities in Nigeria, the Gambia, Ghana, Liberia, Senegal, Sierra Leone, and United Arab Emirates.
On January 31, 2020, Air Peace announced the introduction of two new destinations to its schedule; in India and Israel. These were planned to be activated before the end of the year 2020.
Azman Air Services Limited was established in 2010 by a businessman called Abdulmunaf Yunusa Sarina. It is a Kano, Nigeria, based domestic airline company. The airline operates domestic passenger services with its main base in Mallam Aminu Kano International Airport, Kano. The airline began operations on the 15th of May, 2014 with its first commercial flight to Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport from Kano. In October 2017, the airline intended starting to fly to international destinations such as the Middle East and Asia when it began leasing an Airbus from an Egyptian Charter airline. However, currently, Azman Air only flies domestic routes within Nigeria.
This is an airline based in Lagos, Nigeria. Med-view Airline was founded in 2007, mainly operating Hajj flights from Nigeria. In November 2012, the airline began offering domestic passenger services within Nigeria.
The proposal of Nigeria Air and its subsequent suspension
In 2018, it was announced that Nigeria has commenced negotiations with aircraft manufacturers in preparation for the unveiling of a new national carrier, Nigeria Air. Although, the name is similar to the Nigerian Airways Limited which has long been liquidated, the Minister for State Aviation, Hadi Sirika, insists that the airline will be privately-operated with the Nigerian government owning not more than 5% of the airline.
The now extinct, Nigeria Airways Ltd was a Nigerian airline founded in 1958. The airline still operated under the name, West African Airways Corporation (WAAC) until 1971 when it was rebranded to Nigerian Airways Limited. The Airline ceased operations in 2003. This was due to issues such as mismanagement of funds, corruption, poor safety records and overstaffing. At the time of the airline’s closure, it had debts running to about US$528,000,000. On 3 April 2006 (three years after its liquidation), Arik Air took over the former Nigeria Airways facilities in Lagos.
However, barely two months after the proposal of the new Nigeria Airs, the Federal Government announced its suspension, describing the move as a tough decision