Nigeria’s Cally Air starts commercial operations

Despite the COVID 19 Pandemic and its impact on the aviation industry, Cally Air, a Nigerian-based startup airline, has begun commercial flights between Lagos, Abuja, and Calabar. The flights will start using a B737-300, registered 5N-BYQ (MSN 30334). This will be the first Commercial flight of Cally Airlines.

According to Flightradar24, the inaugural flight took place on July 15, departing from Lagos and arriving in Abuja. The Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport in Abuja was buzzing on Thursday when Cally Air, a commercial airliner from Cross River State, landed for the first time.

Cally Air

According to Nigerian news outlets, the plane was greeted at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Lagos, by Ben Ayade, the governor of the Nigerian state of Cross River, who boarded the plane for inspection and hailed the event as the realization of a dream that began in 2016.

Although the ticket prices are relatively higher than other airways, He expressed optimism that Cally Air would help to boost tourism in Cross River State, which is located on Nigeria’s Atlantic Ocean coast and shares a border with Cameroon.

“This marks the commencement of the state of Cross River’s liberation and total independence from the government.” the governor remarked, congratulating all the people. Cally Air, in my opinion, is the start of the privatization process that will eventually result in the creation of a private sector that has never been before”.

About the Cally Air 5N-BYQ

The 21-year-old plane, previously known as YL-BBX and operated by airBaltic, is being leased from Magnetic Leasing and is scheduled to arrive on April 28, 2021. For the state’s commercial airline, the planes are equipped with an all-economy 144-seat cabin. The second aircraft arrived just three weeks after the first, which arrived on April 6, 2021.

This Boeing 737-300, 5N-BYQ, is the airline’s second ex-airBaltic 737-300. Nigerian startup airline Cally Air received its first aircraft five years after its planned debut date. On April 6, the Boeing leased from World Star Aviation arrived in Lagos. The 22-year-old plane, which previously flew for airBaltic and is now registered as 5N-BYR, was greeted by its new operator with a water cannon salute.

Cally Air photo by Pavel Hon
Cally Air photo by Pavel Hon

He added that the state’s new Obudu International Airport, which is now under development and scheduled to open in December 2021, was the same way. The development of the airport has been contentious since the Okambi village, which owns the land on which it is being built, has objected. To encourage international tourists to visit the Obudu cattle ranch, we are building an airport in Obudu.

Ayade continued, “The Cally Air reality is a strong statement that sub-nationals may genuinely become fully independent,” noting that the airliner will increase passenger traffic to Cross River state and the Obudu international airport, which he stated would be completed by December 2021.

“Let the world know today that you can achieve everything your imagination imagines. Cally Air will also fly to Obudu, and the Obudu cattle ranch will see a significant increase in traffic.”

“It would raise state Internally Generated Revenue and also offer employment chances for teaming unemployed youngsters in the state,” the governor added.

The Nigerian airline startup industry is a bustle of activity. In February of last year, the airline signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Airbus for 50 A220-300s. It will be one of the program’s most important orders and the largest ever from Africa.

The Cally Air Boeing 737-300 is equipped with a unique GPS that is the greatest of its kind in use, as well as a cutting-edge communication system. Boeing’s most successful airplane type, with the best safety record in its history.

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