Air Passengers lament hike in airfares as festive season approaches
Iexclusive News Nigeria reports that airfares have been significantly hiked by Nigerian airlines due to increased demand for travel tickets, which has caused an outcry from travelers.
The festive period, which is well-known for a lot of travelling, both locally and internationally, has been hit with a significant increase in air travelling fares across major cities in the country.
This online news medium gathered from the websites of various Nigerian airlines and travel agencies, a scheduled flight, Thursday, 10th December, from Lagos to Abuja, cost as high as N100,528; while from Kaduna to Abuja on the same day is around N128,467 for an economy class ticket.
A flight from Maiduguri to Lagos costs around N128,467, while a return ticket between Lagos and Benin costs around N120,000.
This online news medium recall that the management of Max Air and Aero Contractors in different interviews, attributed the sudden hike in fare to changes in the exchange rate.
According to the statement from Mr. Kehinde Ogunyale, the station Manager of Max Air, the Airline increased the fare due to the Dollar to Naira exchange rate and the increase in demand for tickets.
Mr. Abdulmalik Jibreel of Aero Contractors explained that the high demand for tickets during this period necessitated the increase in fare, coupled with the Dollar to Naira exchange volatility.
A travel expert who prefers to remain anonymous, said that she bought some economy class tickets today at very high prices.
According to her, she bought a ticket from Lagos to Benin (one way) for N60,000, return ticket for N120,000, and another from Kano to Abuja for N95,000.
She explained that the increase is mostly because of the high demand for travel tickets, as many are travelling back to their homes for the Christmas and New Year celebrations.
She said that the Airlines could also create scarcity by increasing fares in order to probably try to rake in reasonable money post-Covid-19, considering the losses incurred during the pandemic induced lockdown.
Mr. Babatunde Akinyele, a Structural Surveyor, said that he was forced to postpone his intended travel from Lagos to Benin yesterday when he saw the fare.
He stated that he might have to consider alternative means of transportation if tickets continue to sell for that high.
The increase in airfares could force travelers who are unable to afford the new fare to travel by road rather than air, which would cause increased vehicular movement in the country and could increase the chances of road accidents.
However, this is an opportunity for the Nigerian airlines to recoup some of the losses incurred during the lockdown when they were forced to halt operations due to the Covid-19 pandemic.