Airfares To Europe Exceed N5m As Weak Exchange Rate, Niger Crisis Linger


Following the current poor exchange rate in Nigeria and the lingering political crisis in Niger, International airfares, especially to European countries, are expected to keep climbing further in the next few days.

This week, the Naira crashed to as low as N910/$ at the parallel market as the market switched to a panic mood. With the local currency breaking the N900/$ psychological ceilings, there are fresh concerns that the troubled currency is still far from bottoming out and that it could hit N1000/$ mark in the coming weeks.

Nigerians are already paying more than N1 million to travel to Europe, Asia, and the US, however, it is now expected to get even more expensive.

For example, checks show that a one-way ticket to London from Lagos using Virgin Atlantic starts at $3,128.30 (N2.42 million) to as high as $7,578.20(N5.87 million) using the agreed exchange rate of N774.78/$.

Reports reveal that most black market dwellers have run out of supply amidst extremely volatile trading conditions.

Also, the closure of the Nigeria airspace recently has affected the fares.

The National Council for the Safeguard of the Homeland (CNSP) in Niger announced the closure of Niger Republic’s airspace amid threats by the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) demanding that President Mohamed Bazoum be restored, or there would be military action.

According to reports, the Nigerien airspace via Niamey is usually the route for flights from Nigeria to London, Spain, Ireland, France, and several European countries. If the airspace closure persists, airfares to most European will definitely hover beyond the N5m ceiling to the detriment of travelers and other consumers.

Speaking on the development, Atedo Peterside a leading entrepreneur, investment banker, and economist tweeted, “The closure of Niger Republic airspace will increase the cost of flights from Nigeria to Europe.

“If Burkina Faso and/or Mali join Niger in declining overflight rights to Nigerian bound aircraft, then inbound and outbound flights from Nigeria to Europe will become very expensive”

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