Nigerian Airline Air Peace has begun a demonstration of flights in preparation for its long-haul international flights. The latest move is in line with the airline’s announcement made earlier this month.
Air Peace announced that it will begin long-haul flights to Dubai, Guangzhou-China, Houston, Johannesburg, London, Mumbai, and Sharjah starting this year. Notably, demonstration flights are mandated by the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority before an airline obtains clearance for long-haul flight operations.
Mr. Chris Iwarah, The Corporate Communications Manager, Air Peace, said the demonstrations started with a flight that took off from the Murtala Muhammed International Airport (MMIA), Lagos, for Dakar, Senegal, on Tuesday. The B777 aircraft flown by Captains Victor Egonu and Simon Donughue also had the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) inspectors on board, reported The Punch.
Iwarah said the next visit would be Kano, Port Harcourt, Freetown, Johannesburg, and Sharjah. He added that though the demonstration flights are costly, they are still necessary to ensure the safety of customers and airline crew members.
“The non-revenue flights to demonstrate our capabilities with the Boeing 777 next will be visits to Kano, Port Harcourt, Freetown, Johannesburg, and Sharjah,” the Air Peace official said adding, “This is what goes into ensuring the safety of our valued customers and crew; it is costly but necessary.”
In related news, Air Peace inaugurated its non-stop flights from Lagos to Banjul, The Gambia on Monday. With a non-stop flight, the airline would no longer have to route its Lagos-Banjul flights through Accra, Ghana. The carrier had earlier broken its connecting flights to Freetown, Sierra Leone. It now operates direct Lagos-Freetown-Lagos flights.
It was also announced that the airline was consolidating its leadership of air services on the West Coast of Africa with scheduling of more flights on the Accra, Ghana route. It is expected that the development will help to cut passengers’ cost and travel time.