Travel agencies

‘This is unacceptable’ – Travel companies call on FG to engage stakeholders on skyrocketing airfares

The National Association of Travel Agencies of Nigeria (NANTA) says the continued increase in the price of local and international air fares is unacceptable.

Susan Akporiaye, national president of NANTA, said Thursday during a press conference in Lagos.

Akporiaye described the increase as hostile to the survival of Nigeria’s downstream aviation sector, and urged the federal government to engage the necessary stakeholders in the aviation industry on the issue.

She said it was disheartening that Nigerians had to buy tickets worth N3m and be charged up to N1m to change travel dates – even on tickets bought before the start of the problem.

“This is unacceptable, abusive and hostile to the survival of the Nigerian Air Force downstream sector,” she said.

“We call for reason and return to inventory and deployment best practices.

We urge the government, as a matter of urgency, to open new windows of engagement by calling a meeting with all parties involved.

Akporiaye said these parties include the “Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Minister of Aviation, Minister of Finance, Minister of Foreign Affairs, Civil Aviation Authority of Nigeria (NCAA), the ‘International Air Transport Association (IATA) and NANTA’.

“We appreciate the government for releasing some funds for the aviation industry and we hope this issue will be resolved soon,” she said.

Akporiaye added that the country is going through one of the toughest times in its travel economy.

She said there were problems with currency shortages, increases in local and international travel fares, visa restrictions and threats of deportation by foreign countries without hesitation.

Akporiaye said businesses needed to be taken into account as they were on the verge of total collapse, adding that industry personnel could be forced to take to the streets.

“We ask foreign airlines to pause and rethink what we find abusive,” she said.

“They are advised to restore inventories at all levels and think of the good days when they came in and out of Nigeria enjoying the best patronage from us and the Nigerian traveling public.”

The NANTA chairman said the delay in repatriating funds from foreign airlines was an embarrassing situation, especially when IATA labeled Nigeria an indebted country.

According to her, NANTA has undertaken empathy visits to all foreign airlines share their sorrows.

She said the association has reached out to the airlines to engage the government through the Ministry of Aviation and the CBN to easily find solutions for releasing the trapped funds.

She added that during the suffocating circumstance, airlines pulled lower inventory across the board, selling at the highest possible openings to cushion their trapped funds.

“In the midst of the exorbitantly difficult option for our customers and other travelers public, not ruling out the threat of job losses and store closures by most of our members, we clung to optimism that our government will respond,” she said.

“Just recently, the Federal Government, through the Central Bank of Nigeria released approximately $265 million to serve these trapped funds and to which IATA hailed Nigeria for taking strategic steps to end the problem.

“Unfortunately, this gesture resulted in strangers airlines visiting the Nigerian traveling public with the most exploitative response in in the name of protecting their business.

“Their response, which we could call ‘pandemic high fare’, is only targeted at Nigeria and Nigerians, and cannot be seen anywhere in Africa, even in countries where they also have their funds. trap.

“This issue needs to be resolved quickly.”