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Arik Air airlifts 4 million passengers since inception

Kenneth Ehigiator
Arik Air has airlifted well over four million passengers since it started flight operations in the country in October 2006.
According to the airline, the passengers’ traffic includes those carried on domestic, regional and international flights.

Arik Air flies into virtually all the 22 airports in the country as well as Johannesburg, London and New York in its international operations.

The airline’s Managing Director, Mr Jason Holt, said the performance speaks volumes about the investment, experience and skill that have driven the airline to the position it currently occupies as Nigeria’s and Africa’s fastest growing airline.

He said between 21 December 2009 and 3 January 2010, Arik Air’s passengers’ traffic grew by over 42%, adding that had helped to boost the number of people airlifted since it commenced operations.

Holt said: “In November 2009, Arik Air launched the first non-stop flights in a decade by a Nigerian carrier between Lagos and New York, re-connecting Nigeria’s commercial hub with one of the world’s foremost centres for international business.

“The airline also launched its first long haul services from Abuja to London Heathrow and expanded services between Nigeria and West Coast markets. At the end of October 2009, when the airline celebrated its third anniversary, Arik Air had carried three and half million guests and just two months later, that figure has risen by half a million.

“Arik Air has been the success story of Nigerian commercial aviation. That is set to continue and there is much to achieve. During 2010, the airline plans to expand its market share in Nigeria to 66 percent, up from the current 40 percent and expects to carry six million guests by the end of the year.”

The airline’s Chief Commercial Officer, Mr Suraj Sundaram, explained that one factor contributing to the increase in the number of guests carried at the end of 2009 was the airline’s response to the high level of seasonal demand before and after the Christmas and New Year holiday period.

“Offering services to 22 destinations within Nigeria, Arik Air was able to bring more Nigerian families together during the festive season than any other carrier.  “The special Christmas flight programme that commenced from Monday, 21 December 2009 saw an increase in capacity from our two hubs of Lagos and Abuja, to Enugu, Owerri, Port Harcourt, Benin, Warri and Calabar.


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