Arik Air’s Missing Link

Entry contributed by: GlobalFlyer

For more than three years, Arik Air has succeeded in building a strong foundation for responding positively to the needs of its customers.  From one milestone to the next, the airline has met most, if not all, of its stated ambitions during its start-up phase.

In light of the seemingly slow economic recovery taking place in Nigeria and beyond, and the cut-throat competition among the local airlines, it would be reasonable to state that customers like myself expect higher value-for-money when patronizing an airline.  This holds especially true for business travellers.  In light of these facts, the introduction of a Frequent Flyer Program (FFP) by Arik Air would be entice most frequent travelers to fly Arik .  FFPs are loyalty programs offered by many airlines allowing enrolled members to accumulate ‘frequent flier miles’.  Acquired miles can be redeemed for free tickets, hotel stays, car rentals, travel class upgrades, airport lounge access,  etc.

Arik’s market share stands to rise even further as passengers loyal to other airlines with established FFPs switch allegiance to Arik.  It already boasts a more modern fleet of aircraft, the largest route network and highest number of daily frequencies on all its routes.  The missing link, therefore, for most frequent flyers hesitant in ‘abandoning accumulated flier miles with other airlines’ and flying with Arik, is a new FFP at the Wings of Nigeria!

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10 Comments

Filed under Other, Strategy

10 responses to “Arik Air’s Missing Link

  1. bobby

    Well to be honest, it takes time to upgrade systems to allow for such a product. Their pro’s they will get to this.

  2. Emeka I.

    At this time, Arik stands to gain very little through the expense of a FFP. On the domestic market, Arik is among the go-to airlines. The occasional traveler is very price sensitive, and the more seasoned traveler has little other serious competitor will probably stick with the tried and true.

  3. Nat

    The FFP is a double edge sword: on one hand it could keep your loyal customers, on the other hand it is a liability on the airline books. Many legacy airline can attest to this. Arik should learn from other airline experience. What good is a million FF miles if the airline went belle up.

    IMO, there are more pressing issues on Arik’s hand such attain customer service as good as SIA, getting/flying US route on their own, and staying profitable.

    Give me a memorable customer experience (from website to baggage claim) and you can keep the FFM, thank you very much.

  4. The only way Arik can tap into the business travel market effectively is to provide a FFP. It’s true that price sensitive passengers will take fare into consideration more than anything, but business travelers are too used to the perks associated with FFP and as such always consider them before committing to an airline.

    Besides, as the airline expands into new intercontinental markets where business traffic is significant (Lagos-Houston, Lagos-Dubai, Lagos-Shanghai/Beijing) and the flier miles are too good to be ignored, no-FFP is a nonstarter for an airline aspiring to become a ‘world-class airline’.

  5. Emeka I.

    Out of curiosity, does anyone know or can speak to the benefits Nigerian Eagle (then Virgin Nigeria) gained or still gains from the Eagle Flyer FFP?

  6. paul taylor

    Well FFP to me is in line with airlines elsewhere and will probably be a progression with Arik and others.
    I think a great deal can be said to Arik Air partnering with the many multi-location chains that seem to be emerging or already existing in Nigeria and West Africa. In Canada and Elsewhere we have Airmiles programs . Supermarket Chains, Gasoline retailers , Banks, Credit cards and many many other nation wide businesses reward loyalty to their Brands via Air Miles Cards.
    I have used AirMiles on one trip but I have Airmiles for at least two trips in North America.
    My first trip was on Air Canada which is generally a bloated former Government Owned company. My next Trips will be on Westjet and I look forward to those greatly. Westjet is not unlike Arik Air as an upstart with great new airplanes with staff that does not have a bureaucrats attitude unlike the Former Crown Corporation Air Canada.
    Could you image the benefits for Arik Air and the Domestic Businesses like Oando, Glo, Mr Biggs and others if purchases could earn customers free trips ? The redeeming of Airmiles in most cases is very low while the collection of those Airmiles is very high. The Airmiles program can also redeem on purchases besides Air flights and generally people in Canada buy more goods from Airmiles Catalogs then they do take Airflights.
    It is a promoting tool for both the Airlines and the Businesses offering them with slight payments to the Redeemer Airlines. In Canada Shell Oil , Sobeys Grocery Stores. Pharacare, Goodyear, Best Western Hotels and many others are Air Miles Partners
    . Air Canada has a high bar to get flights via Air miles . Westjet partnered with the Bank of Montreal and Mastercard for their own Credit card that all purchases have Airmiles rewards. I could fly to California, Vancouver or Barbados via my miles. Airmiles has been so successful for brand loyalty in Canada ,fueling the fortunes of West Jet and the Bank of Montreal, that Air Canada and rival Bank the Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce created their own plan and Card called Aeroplan.

    FFP is certainly fuel for thought with Arik air but so is Airmiles type partnerships with Nigerian and West African Chain Business. These things I am sure will come in good time

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