Overland Airways accepted its first ATR 72-200 (5N-BPE; ex-FWNUA); the aircraft arrived at Lagos Airport on 27 October 2012. The turboprop aircraft is configured to carry 70 passengers, and the airline announced it has five more ATR 72s on order. Overland already has three ATR 42-300 and two Beech 1900Ds in its fleet. The airline mainly serves thin domestic routes from Abuja and Lagos to Asaba, Bauchi, Ibadan and Ilorin.
A few updates:
- There is no new information on the Dana Air crash. According to a report, the crew requested to land on runway 18R rather than 18L about 20 minutes prior to the accident, meaning that a technical problem may have developed earlier during the flight.
- Dana Air hopes to resume operations as soon as it is cleared by the authorities.
- Air Nigeria’s regional and domestic operations were grounded for more than a week. After a strike by pilots and engineers, the NCAA decided to audit the airline’s fleet. Air Nigeria resumed operations on Thursday, 14 June 2012, although a couple of aircraft is abroad for maintenance checks.
- Air Nigeria postponed its Lagos-Johannesburg service until 1 July 2012. The second wet-leased A330 is yet to join the fleet. The Federal Government also approved Air Nigeria’s request to commence flights to Paris and Rome later this year.
- The NY Times published an article on air travel in Nigeria.
- Overland Airways’ ATR42 (5N-BCS) returned from France after overhaul.
- An Abuja Court of Appeal has ruled that the Federal Government cannot take control of the domestic terminal at Lagos Airport (MMA2).
- Three new business jets are based in Nigeria: a Falcon 2000LX (M-DARA), registered to Trident Investment but presumably operated for the Dangote Group or the Chagoury Group (the Chagoury brothers have a Falcon 7X (VP-BGG)), a G450 (N224BH) based at Abuja (may belong to Quantum Capital); and a EMB 135 (N357TE) operated for BUA Group.
- The Nigerian Air Force has completed the Helicopter Flying School in Enugu, which will be inaugurated in July 2012.
- The Oyo State Governor has revealed plans to transform Ibadan Airport into a cargo airport.
Overland Airways cancelled its flights from Abuja and Lagos to Jos, Katsina and Minna. It appears these routes are not profitable, even when operated with small propellor aircraft (ATR42 and Beech 1900).
The airline retains a five weekly service (Monday-Friday) between Abuja, Ilorin, Ibadan and Lagos.
Overland Airways made some changes to its flight schedule:
- The Jos-Kano service has been dropped; Abuja-Jos-Abuja reduced to two weekly flights;
- Frequencies from Abuja to Katsina and Minna and from Lagos to Minna reduced from five to three weekly flights;
- New hub at Ilorin with five weekly flights to Abuja, Ibadan, Lagos and Minna.
This small airline seems to be stable and doing well compared to other Nigerian carriers.
Overland Airways opened new routes to Jos, Kano, Katsina and Minna this week.
Overland now operates the following routes daily on weekdays:
Overland Airways operates two ATR 42-500s, two or three B1900Ds, and a Saab 340.