Lagos — ARIK Air, the country's national carrier, has extended two of its existing routes as the airline continues its expansion programme for the region continues.
Starting March 10, the airline said it will add Cotonou to its daily route network by operating the Lagos-Dakar flight via Cotonou, the economic capital of Benin Republic.
Similarly, Arik Air also said would extend its daily Abuja-Accra service to Dakar in Senegal.
Speaking on the development, Arik Air's Managing Director/Executive Vice President, Mr. Chris Ndulue said, “As the dominant commercial airline in West Africa, Arik Air is always seeking to strengthen its services in the region to give guests comfort and value for money.
"We will not shy away from providing greater choice and a convenient, accessible network to our valued customers in the West Coast of Africa.”
The airline says the two new routes will be operated using the Bombardier CRJ900 aircraft configured to sit 10 Business Class and 64 Economy class passengers.
It also said that the routes shall be upgraded to the larger Boeing 737-700 aircraft from the upcoming summer season onwards providing freight forwarders of an additional two tons of belly cargo space to facilitate import and export of commercial goods.
The Lagos- Cotonou - Dakar route will operate daily with the outbound flight departing the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Lagos at 7:15 pm (local time) and arrive at Cotonou International Airport at 7:45 pm (local time).
The flight leaves Cotonou at 8:30 pm (local time), arriving in Dakar at 11:00 pm (local time). Inbound flight departs Dakar at 11:45 pm (local time) and arrives in Cotonou at 4:15 am (next day).
The flight leaves Cotonou at 5:00 am (local time) arriving Lagos at 5:30 am (local time).
The Abuja-Accra-Dakar service which will also operate daily departs Abuja at 5:00 pm (local time) and arrive Kotoka International Airport, Accra at 5:50 pm (local time).
The flight continues on to Dakar departing Accra at 6:50pm (local time) arriving Léopold Sédar Senghor International Airport, Dakar at 10:05 pm (local time).
The flight thereafter departs Dakar at 1:50 am (next day) and arrives in Accra at 5:05 am (local time).
At 6:00 am, the flight departs Accra and arrives in Abuja at 8:50 am (local time).
With the developments, Arik Air will be the only carrier offering daily nonstop service to Dakar from Accra and Cotonou each respectively catering for the needs of both the business and leisure passenger market segments.