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Delta resumes Lagos to Atlanta flight as NCAA directs airlines to board passengers without QR codes

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U.S. carrier, Delta Airlines, resumed operations from Lagos to Atlanta on Wednesday. This comes even as the Nigeria Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) has directed airlines to allow passengers without QR codes to board flights in order to ease the difficulties travellers face trying to access government portal to upload information.
A statement from Delta Airlines said it would fly four times a week with departures on Wednesdays, Thursdays, Saturdays, and Sundays.
“We know how important access to the United States is for our customers and now the restrictions have been lifted, we’re looking forward to re-starting our Lagos service to facilitate travel and business opportunities in Atlanta and beyond,” Delta’s Commercial Director – Africa, Bobby Bryan said.
“Customers will have a different flying experience the next time they step onboard but this is to ensure the highest standards of safety for them and our people, which is our number one priority. We are also offering additional flexibility with tickets so customers have extra peace of mind should they need it.”
Flights between Lagos and Atlanta will temporarily make a brief stop in Dakar, with final administrative approvals for nonstop service expected shortly. Customers will not be able to board or disembark in Senegal. The flight will be operated using a Boeing 767-300 aircraft.
Last month, Delta announced that it would extend its middle seat block and limit the number of customers on board every flight until at least January 6, 2021. For customers traveling alone or with one other companion, middle seats will be blocked for safety.
For parties of three or more, middle seats will appear as available for booking, to allow families and travel companions to select seats together.
Customers can also continue enjoying peace of mind in case their travel plans change. For all new flights purchased through December 31, 2020, travelers have the option to change their flight without a change fee for a year from the date of purchase.
Furthermore, the airline has introduced the Delta CareStandard to demonstrate its commitment to a superior level of cleanliness, more space and safer service designed to ensure customers can travel with confidence. As part of this, the airline has founded a Global Cleanliness Division dedicated to innovating and evolving its already-high cleanliness standards to ensure a consistently safe and sanitized experience across its facilities and aircraft for employees and customers, alike.
Meanwhile, the NCAA has noted the difficulty passengers are facing in accessing the QR codes hence the directive to airlines to allow passengers without it to board flights.
QR codes refer to the popularly known 2D barcodes, which people use to scan and send their information through smartphone to the concerned authorities.
In a letter dated September 8, 2020 signed by Musa Nuhu, Director General, NCAA, the agency said, “Airlines are hereby notified that the presentation of evidence of payment receipt in the form of a QR code is recommended for all passengers but not a mandatory requirement for boarding flights to Nigeria for now.
“Airlines are advised to allow passengers without a QR code to board as a temporary measure until additional on-going work to the payment platform is completed. Airlines will be informed in the coming days of any changes in this requirement.
“Please note that presentation of negative COVID-19 PCR test valid within 96 hours of boarding remains mandatory for all passengers travelling to Nigeria. Airlines must ensure compliance with this requirement.
“Flying passengers that do not have negative COVID-19 PCR tests to Nigeria will attract a penalty of $3,500 per passenger.”

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