Delta Air Lines Monday announced it was introducing three weekly nonstop flights from Lagos to New York-JFK, starting March 25, 2018, effectively taking over a route that was previously operated by Arik Air, the Nigerian operator currently under receivership following debts owed Nigeria’s bad bank, the Asset Management Corporation of Nigeria (AMCON).
Delta already runs four weekly direct flights to Atlanta from Lagos and the addition of the new three weekly flights will offer a daily operation from Nigeria to its U.S. hubs, the airline said in a statement made available to Businessamlive.
Preparing to celebrate 10 years of service in Nigeria in December, the airline said it would be deploying Airbus 330-200 aircraft, which are equipped with Wi-Fi and feature 34 fully flat-bed seats in the Delta One cabin on both the New York-JFK and Atlanta routes.
“Nigeria has been a strategically important market for Delta over the past 10 years and a mainstay in our African network,” said Dwight James, Delta’s senior vice president Transatlantic. “As we look ahead to the next decade, we are improving the product offering with the A330 and increasing the number of seats from Lagos.”
Delta’s Lagos to New York-JFK flight will operate on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Sundays and the return on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, the statement explained, adding that night-time departures from Lagos have been scheduled to offer customers easy connections to more than 60 onward destinations via Delta’s New York-JFK hub including Boston, Washington, Baltimore and Chicago.
“We’re proud to be the only airline to offer service to multiple U.S. destinations from Nigeria. Nigeria is an important market for Delta and this new flight reflects the increased demand for travel between the U.S. and Lagos,” said Jimmy Eichelgruen, Delta’s Commercial Director for Africa, the Middle East and India. “Alongside the increased number of travel options, our service is tailored for our Nigerian customers, offering regional cuisine using local ingredients and showing popular Nollywood blockbusters as part of our inflight entertainment.”
Delta currently operates across four African cities, flying to Accra in Ghana; Dakar in Senegal and Johannesburg in South Africa, as well as Lagos.