Dana Air upgrades its fleet with ex-Southwest Boeing 737s

Nigerian low-cost carrier Dana Air took delivery of the first Boeing 737 jet. The 22-year old ex-Southwest Boeing 737-300 (5N-DNA) arrived at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport on Sept. 13 with a direct ferry flight from Naples Capodichino International Airport in Italy.

Dana Air said the addition of a Boeing 737 jet to its all MD-80 fleet is the first step in the airline's network and fleet expansion plans.

The carrier currently operates one McDonnell Douglas MD-82 and three McDonnell Douglas MD-83.

With our fleet size likely to hit nine soon, we are ready to give more 737-rated Nigerian pilots and engineers the opportunity to be gainfully employed. We would also deploy this B737 to strengthen our existing route network while new routes will be announced soon in line with our careful and methodical route and fleet expansion project,

Chief Executive Officer Jacky Hathiramani said.

Dana Air will initially deploy its first Boeing 737 jet on one of its domestic routes between Lagos and Abuja before adding new regional connections to its existing network.

On the return to our West Coast routes, we have that as a plan; maybe from 2020 upwards. But for now, we are concentrating on serving the Nigerian routes,

Chief Operating Officer Obi Mbanuzuo told the local media.

The Nigerian operator will receive another ex-Southwest Boeing 737-300 (5N-DNB) in a few weeks, which is currently under maintenance at Naples airport.

Dana Air plans to retire its MD-80s as more Boeing 737 added.