Ibom Air (QI, Uyo) plans to add seven African and two domestic routes to its network from April 2023, according to Chief Operations Officer George Uriesi.

He told ch-aviation that Ibom Air would phase in regional flights from the first quarter of 2023. "The seven destinations are a carefully planned pivot to the region from operating only domestically. But the rollout is steady and organic. We won’t be starting all stations so quickly. It will happen over the course of this year, one after the other," he said. "We’ve looked at the passenger numbers and chosen our destinations based on the already existing ‘unserved’ or ‘underserved’ markets."

The new regional routes would serve Ghana (Accra), Cameroon, Sierra Leone (Freetown), Senegal (Dakar Blaise Diagne International), Liberia (Monrovia Roberts), Gabon (Libreville), and Gambia (Banjul), Group Manager (Marketing and Communications) Aniekan Essienette earlier told The Daily Trust newspaper. "Right now, we are in the process of tidying up all the international agreements, and once that is done, we will start going to our region," she said. Flights to Gambia have been requested by the country's vice president, Isatou Touray, she claimed.

Although the airline had already mapped out plans for the regional routes, it had to meet domestic demand first before expanding regionally, she added. "We are focused on one thing, to grow this airline and put [the Nigerian state of] Akwa Ibom on the pedestal. We are going to expand regionally. We tell everyone that cares to listen that Ibom Air is a world-class African regional airline, meaning that, as much as we want to go international, we want to, first of all, conquer the African territory," Essienette said.

Uriesi earlier told ch-aviation the airline expects delivery of ten in-house A220-300s from October 2023 to 2026, with the first three units expected between October 2023 and October 2024 and the remaining every quarter. Uriesi said Ibom Air had chosen the A220 because of its continental aspirations. The aircraft provided enough payload on routes to hot and high destinations such as Johannesburg O.R. Tambo. Uriesi said Ibom Air had no ambitions for intercontinental flights.

Based at Uyo, Ibom Air currently serves six domestic destinations, including Abuja, Lagos, Calabar, Enugu, Port Harcourt Omagwa, according to the ch-aviation schedules module. Its current fleet comprises two A320-200s wet-leased from Lithuania's GetJet Airlines (GW, Vilnius), and five CRJ900LRs, ch-aviation fleets advanced data shows.

Nigeria's Akwa Ibom state is a shareholder in the airline through the Ibom Investment Corporation.