Emirates launches West Africa service

The Emirates delegation at Dubai airport prior to boarding the inaugural flight to Lagos and Accra

Emirates officially observed the launch of its services to West Africa when its Airbus A330-200 aircraft arrived from Dubai to an official welcome at the Murtala Mohammed International Airport in the Nigerian city of Lagos.

The aircraft touched down at the airport on Friday, January 2.
Flight EK781 later flew on to the Ghanaian capital Accra to another official reception.   
Ghaith Al Ghaith, Emirates’ executive vice-president commercial operations Worldwide, led a delegation of the airline.
Emirates officially announced the opening of the Lagos gateway to Dubai last December as part of the airline’s drive to boost trade relations between Nigeria and the Middle East with four direct flights a week from Lagos to Dubai.
At a press briefing at Lagos airport, Al Ghaith said: “Emirates’ new services initiative is expected to boost business and tourism flows links between West Africa, the GCC states and the Middle East.
“They will facilitate investment in Nigeria and also strengthen cultural exchanges and understanding between this huge country and our region. This new route will give our customers four flights a week to both Lagos and Accra.”
Lagos and Accra are the 73rd and 74th destination served by Emirates - eight of them on the African continent – in the 52 countries now included in its network. 
Emirates’ Airbus A330-200 aircraft flies four times a week to Lagos and Accra, offering a to three-cabin service.
In addition to passenger services, Emirates SkyCargo also is making available up to 120 tonnes of cargo capacity per week between Dubai and the West African destinations.
Emirates’ operations in West Africa are supervised by Fouad Caunhye, Regional Manager West Africa. Guy Philips, one of the airline’s most experienced managers, is in charge of its Nigerian operations. 
Flight EK781 leaves Dubai every Monday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday at 3:45am, arriving in Lagos at 8:45am. It takes off again at 9:55am and lands in Accra at 10:05am.
The return flight, EK782, takes off from Accra at 11:35am, arriving in Lagos at 13:45. It departs at 15:00, touching down in Dubai at 1:00am early the next morning.