Nigerian Youth's 'Japa' Dreams Fuel Foreign Airlines Ticket Sales to Highest in Africa

Nigerian Youth's 'Japa' Dreams Fuel Foreign Airlines Ticket Sales to Highest in Africa

  • It has been revealed that international airlines make more ticket sales in Nigeria than in any other country in Africa
  • This is driven by rising number of young Nigerians seeking to leave the country for greaner pastures abroad
  • Report has it that each year, Nigerian students and their dependents contribute around £1.93 billion to the UK economy

The pursuit of dreams abroad, commonly known as 'Japa' among Nigerian youth, has led to an increase in foreign airline ticket sales.

Bankole Bernard, chairman of the Airlines and Passengers’ Joint Committee (APJC) of the International Air Transport Association (IATA) disclosed that international airlines, travel agencies realized a whopping $1.1 billion(N511.5bn) from ticket sales in 2022.

This is despite challenge in economic activities including rising amount of airline trapped funds.

Airlines ticket sale
More Nigerian youths are seeking opportunities abroad Photo credit: @Galima
Source: Getty Images

BusinessDay reports that the amount of ticket sales by airlines in Nigeria is the highest in Africa.

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Bernard said:

“The airlines have sold more. In the whole of Africa, Nigeria sales is still the highest. We have done over $1.1billion in 2022. We are doing very well more than our contemporaries.
“We are a good market and a market that any airline would want to come into. Nobody will talk about the good side of this market. Nigerians are still travelling. The only thing is that travel agents are losing business to outside the country. Most of us are buying tickets from other travel agencies from around the world.

The Nigerian youths Japa dreams

In recent years there has been a growing trend in Nigeria of young people seeking to purse their dreams of better life abroad, a phenomenon commonly referred to as "Japa".

According to the latest official data from the Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA), the population of Nigerian students studying in the UK has reached an all-time high of 44,195 for the academic year 2021/2022.

This represents a significant increase from the previous year's figure of 21,305 students.

Nigeria's student population compared to other countries in UK

The top 10 international students listed according to HESA's statistics are as follows:

  • China - 151,690
  • India - 126,535
  • Nigeria - 44,195
  • United States - 22,990
  • Hong Kong - 17,630
  • Bangladesh - 12,700
  • Malaysia - 12,135
  • Saudi Arabia - 8,750
  • United Arab Emirates - 8,085
  • Canada - 7,485

Breakdown of the amount required to relocate to the UK for singles, married

In another report, disclosed that a Nigerian residing abroad published a comprehensive estimate of how much it may cost to migrate to the United Kingdom.

Although he clarified that it is only an estimate, his study is sure to give direction to Nigerians travelling as singles, married couples, and families

The number of Nigerians leaving for the UK is at an all-time high, mainly via studies.


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