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8 Things That Go Through Your Mind When You’re On A Local Flight in Nigeria

Nkem Ndem

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In Nigeria, air travel is arguably, the fastest and nost effective mode of travel. Ideally, flying by air should save you time and stress.

However, it is not exactly as glamorous as expected. The sub-standard nature of services rendered by most local airlines can be quite disappointing. It gets you moaning over myriad thoughts, while on a trip.

If you have ever traveled on a local flight within Nigeria, you may be familiar with some of these thoughts:

Why is take-off taking so much time?
Local airlines in Nigeria seem to derive a measure of pleasure from delaying travelers. From canceled flights, to delays caused by engine problems, or bad weather, passengers have to adjust their traveling time to include the extra time spent waiting for their flight.

Of all the kinds of delay though, the most annoying one is that happens when you board the plane. Imagine having to wait as long as 30 minutes, for the pilot to “warm” the plane before you finally take off.

Why?

No announcement is even made to pacify the waiting passengers. You are just sitting there… confused.

Wait…What if this plane actually crashes?
After boarding, the air hostesses usually make demonstrations on how passengers are expected to put on their gas masks, as well as how they are to exit the plane – in the event of an emergency.

They also go round to ensure passengers switch off their phones.

This all gets you recounting incidents of plane crashes that have happened in the country, and you start to wonder if your flight is the next crash to be featured on the news.

You feel defeated because you already know that should there be a crash, there will most likely be a 0% chance of survival, seeing as emergency responses systems do not exist in Nigeria. You simply just bend your head and stealthily speak in tongues.

Why is the person next to me reciting their life story?
Passengers on Nigerian local flights can be annoyingly friendly. They introduce themselves, and you give in with initial small talk; but, some don’t quit. They will start to narrate the ordeal they had to endure the last time they flight. Should you try to sleep off, they would even tap you, or decide to put their head on your shoulder and sleep off as well.

How long until the flight attendant starts serving refreshments?
It appears most airlines prefer the passengers leaving the plane with branded food boxes, so that prospective fliers could take notice of the food service and opt for their airline next time. 30 minutes into a 45 minutes flight, you still have not been served any refreshments on some flights. You start to wonder when they plan to serve the refreshments. Not like you cannot do without the food, but you have had to wait for over 2 hours for the flight and well, the food sold at the waiting lounge is just too expensive.

This “refreshment” is crap
After the wait, the hostess finally wheels the food cart to your row and she hands you a food pack. You quickly open it, only to find one stale cupcake or biscuit, something that looks like a croissant…but it’s not exactly a croissant. In addition, they throw in one tom-tom(candy) and a small bottle of water. Then she says: would you like water or juice? You consider the money you spent buying the ticket, compare it to the pile of rubbish in front of you and think to yourself how crappy the refreshment is.

Why is that lady wearing those heels?
It’s hard to find a flight without at least one the lady wearing a pair of outrageously high shoes. And if you are one of the many Nigerians who likes to silently judge others, you are bound to wonder why the lady is overdressed and wearing such heels, when clearly it will keep her uncomfortable throughout the flight. You even wonder what she would do should there be an emergency and she needs to run out of the plane.

How do people even have sex in this tiny, smelly restroom?
In the movies, people sneak away to have sex in the airplane toilet all the time,  but if you sit in rows near the restroom, you can already smell the stale door from the toilet. Out of curiosity, you go to the toilet and you realise it is actually even smaller in reality than in the movies, and you wonder how people manage to have sex in the tiny toilet. Then, that smell? How? Just how?

Hurray, we landed. Flying in Nigeria is the worst!
The only time you have happy thoughts on a local flight is usually when the flight is over and you have touched down. The fear and anxiety dissipates and you regain the confidence to start complaining about every single thing you may or may not have experienced during your flight.

Photo Credit: Dreamstime| Kouassi Gilbert Ambeu

Nkem Ndem is a dynamic freelance writer and editor who can be reached for copywriting, editing and proofreading. She is also a content creator (web, T.V, radio) who has had stints with Jumia and SpiceTV Africa e.t.c. Now she works at Glam Africa as Online editor and BellaNaija as Features writer. E-mail: [email protected]; IG: @kem_dem; Twitter: @ndemv

14 Comments

  1. Bennie

    June 15, 2017 at 1:06 pm

    This is so true!!!

  2. Nnomsie

    June 15, 2017 at 3:11 pm

    Well said and you can even hear some people exhale a sigh of relief and some even clap when the plane lands…to show the tension in the air.

  3. Concerned_Boyfriend

    June 15, 2017 at 3:55 pm

    The primary reason why I haven’t visited Abuja was my fear of flying local in Nigeria. I’d rather catch an international flight that flies into Abuja than fly local. I refuse.!. Kudos to some of y’all brave enough to take this risk. Wehdone ma, Wehdone Sir!

  4. Meestyk

    June 15, 2017 at 5:14 pm

    Sex in naija airplane toilet. You want to catch gonohrrea?

    • Hedx

      June 16, 2017 at 7:44 am

      Never been in an aircraft toilet, I spend 45mins confessing my sins to God and begging for the grace to touch down safely.

  5. Nne Umu Boys!

    June 15, 2017 at 5:26 pm

    Once you see 8 things, 9 things, 4 things, 6 things =Nkem’s Article lol nice one babes, keep at it!

  6. Royalty

    June 15, 2017 at 6:27 pm

    Hahahaha… The refreshment part got me. They act as if they are doing you a favour serving you snacks as if you are still a toddler. Some won’t even give you water. Even paying for business class doesn’t guarantee you being served a palatable meal. The difference between him and those in economy is the size of your snacks. If you are lucky, you’d be served food. As for the taste, just forget it.

    Then those ladies who dress as if it’s their birthday….how do you do it? Is that your first time going to an airport or boarding an airplane? Is that where your meet your soul mate? There are those who are dressed for a meeting or event and may not have the time to change their outfits but 90% of those overdressed aren’t going for any function. It’s all show off. You’d still carry your show off to economy after paying for economy saver… #WehdoneAunty

  7. M&

    June 15, 2017 at 7:20 pm

    8 ke? Only one thing on my mind biko… “GOD ABEG! INTO YOUR HANDS I COMMIT THIS FLIGHT! PLEASE LAND US SAFELY!”

  8. Akara Pancake

    June 15, 2017 at 10:24 pm

    You forgot extortion. Those airport officers are always on the look out for tips, like some kind of aviation surtax.

    The worst are the ones who man scanning machines just before the departure lounge.

    Years back, I was travelling from Lagos to Owerri on a balmy Monday morning. I got to the final officers at the post before the waiting area.. I was carrying a laptop bag, and once the inspecting officer saw me he smiled.

    I knew what his sick smile meant – he wanted mula, owo, egunje, tip, kudi, corn…

    ‘Anything for us sir, we are loyal’ he saluted.

    ‘Nah mate, sorry. I spent all the loose change I had on Gala and gra-nuts at the airport tuck shop. All I have on me is my debit card’ I explained

    ‘Bring any change you have; I am loyal’ he insisted. He never stopped smiling. His teeth looked like Dracula 2000.

    ‘Ok o, but you would not like it o’ I warned as sighed.

    ‘Make you surprise me’ he dared, closing his eyes, and expecting a tip like a reluctant sex partner.

    I reached into my pocket, and out came out with micro naira. It was the crummiest, most tattered looking and worn out 20 naira you could imagine. On the banknote, Murtala’s forehead and nose were held together by cellotape.

    I attempted to squeeze it into his hands discreetly, but as soon as his eyes caught a whiff of the green coloured notes, he suspected that I had given him the ‘wrongest’ denomination.

    And he withdrew his hand like I was an Ebola sufferer trying to make contact. ‘Ah! 20 naira, na him you wan take tip me? And na flight you dey take travel. You sure say you no for enter Chisco? Abeg carry go jor; save journey.’

    I pulled down my laptop back from the conveyor belt, and got the hell out of dodge. Idiot officer

    • Miss thing

      June 16, 2017 at 12:19 am

      Loool
      This made my day!!you should write !

    • Blessedheart

      June 16, 2017 at 9:36 am

      He used to (unless he copied this). I wonder why Esco stopped writing

  9. Chi

    June 16, 2017 at 2:56 am

    Lool . Seconded. @Akara Pancake, you should write.

  10. Nkem Ndem

    Nkem Ndem

    June 16, 2017 at 4:12 am

    @Ak n P Lol. “closing his eyes, and expecting a tip like a reluctant sex partner.” really? you are a clown.

  11. Nana

    June 16, 2017 at 5:17 am

    I can relate! Arik Air would give u the biggest snack box in the world; u ll open n find one small box of happy delight juice n biscuit n two tiny candies lol! As for the time wasted before n after boarding…gosh!

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