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Bad Weather Disrupts Flights in Nigeria

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The prevailing hazy weather over major parts of the country has continued to disrupt flight operations, especially in the southern part of the country.

 

The disruption has led to flight cancellations by many airlines. The flight cancellations in many airports across the country began on Thursday.

 

An Enugu-bound Ethiopian flight was reportedly forced to return to Addis Ababa on Saturday at the point of landing because of bad weather.

 

At the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja on Monday, only flights from Lagos and northern states were being announced for arrival and departure.

 

Abdulahi Saroke, station manager of Azman Air at the Abuja airport, told NAN that the airline cancelled more than 10 north-bound flights on Thursday and Friday.

 

He attributed the cancellation to intense harmattan haze in the region.

 

Mr. Saroke said that over five flights from Lagos to Kano, Kaduna, Maiduguri, Yola and Kebbi were cancelled as well as two flights from Kano.

 

He said that though the weather had improved in the northern region, it had worsened in the southern part.

 

According to him, as at Monday morning, the flights from Kano and Maiduguri were processed but flights to Enugu and Benin could not be processed because bad weather has shifted to that region.

 

“As I speak with you, no flight has taken off to Enugu and Benin and no flight has also come from those airports today.

 

“The situation has been like that since Saturday but the northern region has improved.’’

 

Henrietta Yakubu, general manager, Corporate Affairs, Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN), confirmed that the bad weather had affected many flights across the country.

 

Ms. Yakubu said that the weather was a natural phenomenon that was beyond human control.

 

She added that local flight was yet to be recorded as at 2 p.m.

 

According to her, no flight d also taken off from or landed at Benin airport by that time.

 

The Nigerian Meteorological Agency (NiMet), has persistently predicted dust and hazy weather and poor visibility of two to five kilometres and less than 1, 000 metres over the entire country in the last few weeks.

 

The agency has been warning pilots consistently against adverse weather situations that could affect flight operations.

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Air Peace Expands Operations to MMA2 from January Next Year

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Air Peace says it will move a part of its flight operations to the Murtala Muhammed Airport 2 (MMA2), Lagos on Jan. 2, 2019 to position itself for better service to its customers.

The airline made the announcement in a statement signed by its Corporate Communications Manager, Mr Chris Iwarah, on Thursday in Lagos.

The statement said Air Peace, which has its main hub at the General Aviation Terminal (GAT) of the Murtala Muhammed Airport, Lagos, would now operate its Lagos-Akure, Lagos-Asaba, Lagos-Kaduna and Lagos-Port Harcourt NAF Base flights from MMA2.

According to the statement, the development is in line with its expansion plan and strategy to deliver a much better experience to members of the flying public using its services.

It added that the expansion to MMA2 would address the space constraints the airline was facing at the GAT.

He said: “We are pleased to announce the extension of our flight operations from our main base, GAT to MMA2, effective Jan. 2, 2019.

“We will now operate our Lagos-Akure, Lagos-Asaba, Lagos-Kaduna and Lagos-Port Harcourt NAF Base flights from MMA2.

Other new domestic routes we plan to inaugurate soon will also be done from the facility. “Other domestic flights out of Lagos will, however, operate from our main Base, the GAT.

“We are quite hopeful that the expansion of our Lagos base to MMA2 will afford us the space and convenience to deliver first-class flight experience to our loyal customers.’’

The statement noted that the expansion of the airline’s operations could not have come at a better time than the Yuletide season.

“As is the experience around this time of the year, we anticipate a great leap in the demand for air travel.

“Already, we are creating more flights to cater to the expected rise in the demand for air travel at this period. We have also opened up a good number of routes in the last one year.

“As a customer-oriented carrier, it is only strategic that we seek a better operational atmosphere for seamless passenger facilitation and exceptional customer service experience.

“This exactly is what MMA2 offers with its state-of-the-art facilities and we are indeed proud of our decision to annex it to our Lagos hub,” he said.

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Nigerians Embrace Digital Solutions to Manage their Travel – Travelport Research

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Nigerian travellers are forward-thinking and ready to embrace new technologies more readily than their counterparts from Europe and other parts of the world.

This was a major finding of the 2018 Global Digital Traveller Research, an independent global travel study conducted by Travelport, the world’s leading global commerce platform.

The 2018 survey, which covered 16,200 respondents from 25 countries including Nigeria, showed that Nigerian travellers are digital-savvy, mobile native and ready to embrace new technology for a seamless travel experience.

Nigeria ranked 5th globally in the Digital Traveller Rankings, ahead of all the European and North American countries surveyed.

For instance, Nigerian travellers are heavily reliant on their mobile phones. 85% of travellers in Nigeria were shown in the study to use their smart phones when researching their trips, and 78% use their phones to make bookings.

More than half of all travellers (66%) also said they would be lost without their smart phones, and 74% worry about their technology failing, or their phones running out of battery power.

Nigerian travellers were the most likely of those surveyed to want to share their biometrics, to facilitate a better travel experience.

Flight related mobile apps have also become a critical feature for Nigerian travellers. They use multiple apps (an average of 13.6) when researching and booking a trip. These apps are used to search and book flights (82%), for flight alerts (75%) and for mobile check-ins (74%).

Almost half of all travellers (46%) would prefer to see their trip itinerary (flights, hotels, trains, etc.) in one place, while 38% report that they find it unsatisfying to book everything separately.

45% prefer to check-in to a hotel via a mobile app. This demonstrates a clear appetite to work with travel providers which can offer a consolidated digital experience.

According to the report, not only are Nigerian travellers becoming more digitally savvy, they are actually now more discerning.

76% of them think that digital boarding passes make travel much easier, while 68% avoid hotels that charge for Wi-Fi. Clearly free Wi-Fi has gone from a marketing opportunity to an expected necessity for most travellers.

When it comes to payments, a large number (72%) of travellers in Nigeria have used a digital wallet or payment app (e.g. Apple Pay, Alipay, etc.) at some point while travelling, while 31% use them all the time.

The report shows that review sites such as TripAdvisor tend to have a big influence on Nigerian travellers (81%), with 55% of respondents saying that it actually has the greatest influence over their travel choices. For travel research, 82% of the respondents rely on videos and photos posted by friends on social media.

Guido Verweij, Travelport’s Managing Director for Africa, said: “The 2018 Global Digital Traveller Research clearly shows that demand fromNigerian travellers for digital solutions that improve their travel experience is sky high.

This is only going to escalate further in the years to come, so if you work in the travel industry and don’t already have a digital engagement plan, it’s time to get one!”

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Turkish Airlines Reached 83.4% Load Factor in October

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Turkish Airlines announces its passenger and cargo traffic results for October, with the airline reaching 83.4% load factor.

On top of the strong base effect of the last year, the growth in the number of passengers, revenue per kilometer and load factor, is an important indicator of the continued growing interest in Turkey and Turkish Airlines in the last quarter of the year as well.

According to the October 2018 Traffic Results; The passenger growth trend continued in October, thus total number of passengers carried went up by 5% reaching 6.5 million passengers, and Load Factor went up to 83.4%. In October 2018, Total Load Factor improved by 2 points, while international Load Factor increased by 3 points to 83.2%, and domestic Load Factor reached to 85.1%.

International-to-international transfer passengers (transit passengers) also went up by approximately 7%, while the number of international passengers excluding international-to-international transfer passengers (transit passengers) went up by 8%.

In October, cargo/mail volume continued the double digit growth trend and increased by 24%, compared to the same period of 2017. Main contributors to the growth in cargo/mail volume, are Domestic Lines with 42% increase, Africa with 35% increase, N. America with 30% increase, and Europe with 24% increase. Africa, N. America, Europe and Far East also showed load factor growth of 7 points, 4 points, 3 points, and 3 points respectively.

According to the January-October 2018 Traffic Results; there was also an increase in demand and total number of passengers was 10% and 11%, respectively, over the same period of last year. Total number of passengers exceeded 64 million.

Total Load Factor improved by 3 points up to 82.2%, while international Load Factor increased by 3 points reaching 82% and domestic Load Factor went up by 2 points reaching 86%. Excluding international-to-international transfer passengers (transit passengers), the number of international passengers went up significantly by 13%. Cargo/mail carried during the ten months increased by 25% and exceeded 1 million tons.

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