With the Yuletide season fast approaching, difficulties are once again facing Nigerian travelers due to the ever-increasing airfares and the reduced flight options.
Regardless of the CBN’s announcement to pay part of the trapped funds belonging to foreign airlines, reports have revealed that the funds belonging to those airlines, which are yet to be repaid are still on the high side, and this is part of the reason for the high cost of a flight.
The airlines’ trapped fund is estimated to amount to $800million, thus, putting the airlines in a tight spot.
Recall that Emirates Airlines had not too long ago, suspended flights to Nigeria indefinitely, while citing the difficulty in repatriating the funds from ticket sales.
While the Emirate Airlines had blamed the suspension of flights on their trapped funds, the visa ban on Nigerians by the United Arab Emirates, UAE, authorities had additionally resulted in the load factor on the Dubai route decreasing rapidly.
Nigeria’s airline, Air Peace, also announced that it would stop flights by next week, November 22, over the same visa ban issue, as there were just a few or no passengers to carry since the UAE had stopped issuing visas to Nigerians.
With Dubai, one of the most lucrative routes and most frequently toured countries by Nigerians out of the equation, several passengers would now be exploring alternative actions, amidst the high airline fares.