Nigeria: Airfares Jump 57 Percent After New Forex Policy

Nigeria: Airfares Jump 57 Percent After New Forex Policy

By Oyetunji Abioye / From PUNCH

Foreign travels, especially for leisure during this year’s summer, may be out of the reach of many Nigerians, as the Federal Government’s newly introduced exchange rate policy has made airfares on foreign routes to go up by at least 57 per cent, according to findings by our correspondent.

The adoption of N283/dollar as the new interbank exchange rate for the conversion of flight tickets, which are globally priced in dollars, by the Switzerland-based International Air Transport Association has made international airfares on Nigerian routes to rise considerably.

IATA is a trade association for the world’s airlines consisting of about 260 airlines represented in 117 countries and accounting for 83 per cent of the total global air traffic.

Findings from international airlines and travel agencies operating in the country revealed that the airfares might increase further as the summer peak season travels begin this week.

A return economy class ticket to Johannesburg from Lagos, which used to go for between N110,000 and N130,000, is now priced at between N170,000 and N230,000, according to information obtained from travel agents and airlines. This represents 66 per cent increase.

Airlines flown by passengers on the Lagos-Johannesburg route are South Africa Airways, Arik Air, Kenya Airways, RwandAir and Ethiopian Airlines.

Similarly, a return economy class ticket on the Lagos-London route, which used to go for between N250,000 and N450,000 depending on the class a passenger chooses to fly, is now priced between N350,000 and N750,000 for various airlines plying the route. This represents about 57.1 per cent increase in fares.

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