All is now set for Arik Air’s December 1, 2008 launch date of the Lagos-London Heathrow flight operations with the granting of more Heathrow slots to the Nigerian flag carrier by the British aviation authorities.

All is now set for Arik Air’s December 1, 2008 launch date of the Lagos-London Heathrow flight operations with the granting of more Heathrow slots to the Nigerian flag carrier by the British aviation authorities.

This cheering news was broken on Friday, October 31 by Arik Air Managing Director, Mr. Michael McTighe on the occasion of the airline’s second anniversary celebration at the Arik Aviation Centre, Ikeja, Lagos.

He announced that the airline’s first intercontinental flight would be operated using one of the two brand new Airbus A340-500 aircraft which is expected to be delivered to the airline in Toulouse, France, in the middle of November.

According to McTighe, the airline’s 237 seat capacity A340-500 aircraft will have one of best cabin with a two-seat configuration, made up of 36 business class and 201 economy.

He said few people believed the airline when it promised to commence operation in October 2006 with brand new aircraft. “Now, we have proved that we can deliver on promises. We surely deliver the best”, said McTighe.

He recalled that when the airline operated its first flight to Abuja on October 30, 2006, it had 19 passengers on board with just four flights, but today, the airline does 91 flights with 18 aircraft.

While cutting the anniversary cake at the low-key anniversary celebration, Arik Air Chairman, Sir Joseph Arumemi-Johnson, thanked the staff for their dedication to duty, stating that the airline is aiming to be a world class carrier.

He charged the staff to gird their loins as the airline gets set to launch the Lagos-London Heathtrow route, saying they must be courteous, friendly and shun all vices while operating into London.

“Now that we have attained this height, we have to do everything to stay on top”, Sir Arumemi-Johnson charged the staff.

While thanking the Airbus Company in France for its cooperation in getting the two brand new A340-500 and Boeing, its other partner, he assured the staff that the sky was the limit for the airline if it continues to be professional, safety-conscious and offers world-class services.

“As we go into the third year of our operation, we need to work harder and give the best service to our guests”, the chairman concluded.