Nigerians will be left with limited flight options to the States as United Airlines plan to stop flying to Nigeria from next month. Nigeria is the carrier’s only route to Africa because of weakness in the energy sector and difficulties in collecting money sold from tickets. Unfortunately, this will end the company’s trips to Africa.
According to United Continental Holdings Inc., the daily route from Houston to Lagos has not faired well for years but was kept alive because of its importance to Texas-based customers. The last flight to/fro Nigeria will be on June 30th, after which Delta Air Lines Inc. will be the only major U.S. carrier flying to Africa.
Nigeria has restricted the amount of money that can be moved abroad after the global slump in oil prices depleted the government’s U.S. currency reserves. According to the International Air Transport Association, the country owed airlines about $575 million in airfares as of March 31, 2016.
The spokesman of the United Airlines, Jonathan Guerin confirmed that repatriation has been a significant issue and has been the downturn in the energy sector.
Passengers can still fly to Nigeria via United’s trans-Atlantic business partner, Deutsche Lufthansa AG, through a connection in Frankfurt. The Boeing Co. 787 serving Lagos will be used on the San Francisco-to-Tel Aviv route, which will expand to daily in October from three times weekly, according to the airline note.
United Airlines, Inc., commonly referred to as United, is a major American airline with its headquarter located in Chicago, Illinois. It is the world’s second largest airline when measured by the number of destinations covered, and the second largest when measured by scheduled passenger-kilometres flown. Unfortunately, Africa will be taken off its list of continents served from July 2016.