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Lagos to London: Nigerians react over flight ticket price cuts

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Nigerians have expressed their opinions over the recent air travel price cuts, which have seen ticket prices drop significantly for flights going from Lagos to London.

Usually, air travel expenses for Nigerians flying with foreign airlines have always been burdensome, particularly as JetA1 fuel costs have soared as well as forex challenges.

However, indigenous airline Air Peace took steps to alleviate this financial strain by launching its Lagos-London route on March 30, which offered competitive pricing, with economy class fares starting at N1.2 million—significantly lower than the N3-5 million typically charged by foreign carriers.

This pricing strategy has earned praise from Nigerians for its affordability and accessibility, prompting foreign airlines operating on the Nigeria-UK route to reduce their fares in response. Ofcourse, these price cuts have raised a storm of debates and banter on X.

What Nigerians are saying

Bisayo Busari

  • “The takeaway from the recent developments in the Nigeria airline industry is that if we work to develop various sectors & institutions of the country & we as well patronise Nigerian made products & services,we will in matter of time be a power house. 9m to N680k to London.”

Trendwithola

  • “This is laughable and incredible . So Ethiopia Airlines and British Airways can reduce their fares from N1.9M to N680k to London to compete or force AirPeace out of the market. I’m loving how Allen Onyema’s @flyairpeacedey pepper dem. Let the competition begins, we must embrace competitions to bring down the prices of commodities and dollar rates in Nigeria.” 

Mizz RozaPepper

  • “Air Peace has proved that when Africa starts working, we will be free from slavery. Imagine London to Abuja which used to be £2k on British Airways is now £171 starting from June 19. We were in slavery bruhhh!! African leaders should wake up!”

Mazi Nathan

  • If Dr Allen Onyema decides to take Air Peace public — that is go IPO (Initial Public Offering), I am buying 500 units of its shares. I sincerely hope he does this, as it would help shore up cash reserves to compete with the likes of the British Airways. He needs to go global.

Konig Timz

  • “With the way British airways and Ethiopia Airline brought down their ticket prices obviously shows they were making outrageous profits from Nigeria. They are simply using Nigerians as their cash cow. I suggest Nigeria stick with Air peace regardless.”

Ojay Dee

  • “These recent developments about Airpeace, British Airways, Ethiopian Airlines and others further show that these foreigners do not care about us. They’re only in Nigeria to take advantage of our poor system. We need to prioritize our own. Imagine 1.9m to N680k to London.” 

Dr. Dipo Awojide

  • “Once Air Peace cannot compete anymore on that Lagos-London route then, British Airways, Air France, KLM and Lufthansa will jack up their prices. Then, we all lose. Think about it carefully.

Prince Ohmz

  • “I will rather use Air Peace. British airways and Virgin Atlantic have done enough damage to our pockets. So it was possible for BA to sell a business class ticket for £1500 before now? Nigeria gave them the biggest market in Africa & they used it against us. We paid the highest.”

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Aviation consultant, Group Captain John Ojikutu (retd.), while speaking with Nairametrics pointed out the government’s lack of preparation in supporting Air Peace, stating, “The government did not prepare itself very well to support Air Peace.” He emphasized that while Air Peace competes with national and flag carriers, it lacks the backing enjoyed by its competitors, which could have been anticipated prior to venturing into the industry.

Ojikutu highlighted the significance of alliances in the aviation industry, noting that Air Peace’s exclusion from such partnerships puts it at a disadvantage. He questioned the permissions granted to foreign airlines to operate in Nigerian airspace while local carriers face obstacles when attempting to expand internationally.

Proposing a solution, Ojikutu suggested that Air Peace should pursue a strategic business plan and consider going public, with the government having the option to purchase a minority stake.

  • “If the Federal government desires, they can purchase 5-10% of what they initially planned for the National carrier. Each geographical zone can contribute 3%, totaling 18%, while the remainder can be taken to the stock exchange. Two airlines of any are assets of national security. If anything happens to Airpeace in Britain, it will be very difficult for the government to aid the airline. Next, restrict foreign airlines from ploughing certain routes to boost local airline patronage.”

Supporting Ojikutu’s views, Olumide Ohunayo, General Secretary of the Aviation Safety Round Table Initiative,

  • The price increase wasn’t unexpected; Air Peace knew it was inevitable. What was lacking before was capacity, and when capacity does not match demand, fares were bound to rise, coupled with the instability of the naira. Air Peace has arrived, and it’s not just direct airlines experiencing these fare hikes; even the one-stop airlines, not traveling directly, have adjusted their fares.

Despite the challenges faced by Air Peace, Ohunayo noted the availability of unused slots, which could benefit customers by providing more options.

Nairametrics had reported that, the Chief Executive Officer of Air Peace, Allen Onyema, stated that there had been a significant reduction in international airfares by foreign airlines operating the Nigeria-UK route, which he believed was an attempt to prematurely remove Air Peace from the route.


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