United Airline Ends Nigeria Operation, Cites Dwindling Traffic
United States airline, United Airlines, has announced it is stopping its Nigeria operations, the airline’s only African route in June, due to dwindling profitability caused by dropping passenger traffic.
It also announced that it was closing its Lagos operation due to difficulties in repatriating funds earned in the country.
According to the Punch, the news came just six weeks after Spanish carrier, Iberia, also stopped flights to Nigeria for similar reasons.
When the airline finally exits on 30 June, Delta Airlines will be the only US carrier in Nigeria.
The Central Bank of Nigeria’s foreign exchange policy has restricted the movement of foreign currencies abroad following the slump in oil prices.
In an emaile to the Punch, the Head of Press, Europe, Africa, Middle East and India, for United Airlines, Mr. Kevin Johnston, said, “United confirms that it will discontinue its service between Houston and Lagos. The last departure from Houston will be on June 29 and the last departure from Lagos will be on June 30.
“We have regretfully taken this decision because of the route’s poor financial performance. We will contact customers with bookings for flights beyond those dates to provide refunds. We apologise for any inconvenience caused.”
However, passengers can still fly to Nigeria on United’s partner, Deutsche Lufthansa AG, through a connection in Frankfurt. The Boeing 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, the airline’s told its employees.
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