5 International Airports in Nigeria for Travel and Commerce

Have you ever been somewhere besides Nigeria? If you have, you know how important it is to start and end your trip at a good airport. In this article, we’ll talk about international airports in Nigeria. We’ll tell you what they are, why they’re important, and talk about Nigeria’s 5 airports recognized for international flights. Ready to find out something new? Let’s get started!

International airports make it possible to visit other countries and learn about their cultures. This is fun and educational. They have everything you need to make your trip easy and comfortable, like a place to check your passport, customs, shops, restaurants, and lounges. International airports are also very important for connecting businesses and making it easier for countries to trade with each other. They make it possible for companies to bring goods and services into and out of a country. This helps economies grow and creates jobs. In short, international airports are the way to get around the world and the backbone of the global economy.

So, whether you’re a traveller who wants to see new places or a business owner who wants to grow their market, it’s important to know how important international airports are. We’re here to help because of this. We’ll explain everything in simple terms so you can see how international airports make the world smaller and more connected.

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What Is an International Airport?

First, let’s talk about what international airports actually are. People can fly to different countries from these airports. Imagine taking a flight and being able to go to a different place with a different culture, food, and things to see. International airports make it possible for this to happen.

International airports have everything you need to ensure your trip to a different country goes smoothly and comfortably. For example, they have passport control and customs to make sure you have all the documents you need to enter the country you’re flying to. You can also wait for your flight or do some last-minute shopping in the shops, restaurants, and lounges.

One of the most important things about international airports is that they have the tools planes need to fly to other countries. This includes things like fueling stations and navigation systems. The people who work at the airport and the pilots ensure your flight is safe and you get where you’re going on time.

International airports are also important because they allow people from different countries to do business and trade with each other. They make it easier for goods and services to move from one place to another, which is important for the growth and development of economies. In this way, international airports are very important to the world’s economy.

Importance of International Airports in Nigeria

International airports are a big part of how people and businesses worldwide can connect with each other. The list below highlights 9 benefits of international airports in Nigeria;

1. Connects Nigeria to the rest of the world: International airports in Nigeria make it possible for people to visit other countries and learn about their cultures.

2. They make trade and commerce easier: International airports are a key part of trade between Nigeria and other countries, which helps the country’s economy grow and creates new business opportunities.

3. Boosts tourism: Because international airports connect Nigeria to the rest of the world, they help to boost tourism, which brings in new visitors and adds to the country’s income.

4. Creates jobs: International airports offer employment in a wide range of fields, from people who work on the ground to people who work in shops and restaurants.

5. Improves access to medical care: Access to medical care is made easier because international airports make it easier for people in Nigeria to get medical care and treatment in other countries.

6. Supports education: International airports make it easier for students to study abroad and for teachers to go to Nigeria to teach.

7. Offers emergency services: International airports offer emergency services, such as air ambulance services, which can save lives.

8. Allows for cultural exchange: International airports make it possible for people from Nigeria and other countries to share their cultures with each other. This helps people understand each other and builds bridges between communities.

9. Supports global peace and stability: International airports help support worldwide peace and stability by connecting people and making trade more straightforward, which helps reduce tensions and build trust between nations.

List of International Airports in Nigeria

Nigeria has 13 international airports, of which only 5 are recognized worldwide for international transport. Before Nigeria switched to a democratic government system, the country needed international airports. The government thought it was essential to convert the airport it already had into an international airport. This helped Nigeria’s economy and its relationships with other countries.

Most of Nigeria’s international airports need more money, which means their buildings need to be better and will work better. Below is a table that lists all the international airports in Nigeria, where they are located, and who they serve.

AirportLocationWho they serve
Murtala Muhammed International AirportIkeja, LagosLagos
Sadiq Abubakar III International AirportW695+39J, 852101, SokotoSokoto
Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport900102, Abuja, Federal Capital TerritoryAbuja
Mallam Aminu Kano International AirportLagos Rd, 700211, KanoKano
Port Harcourt International Airport 2X83+3J8, 511101, Umuecheigbo, RiversPort Harcourt
Kaduna International AirportM8VG+R4X, 802151, KadunaKaduna
Akanu Ibiam International AirportEnuguEnugu
Margaret Ekpo International AirportAir Force Road, Airport Area 540281, Calabar, Cross RiverCalabar
Sam Mbakwe International Cargo AirportC6H2+2RV, 473119, Umuene Obiangwu, ImoImo
Maiduguri International AirportAirport Road, 151571, Maiduguri, BornoBorno
Anambra International Cargo AirportNteje – Umuleri, AnambraAnambra
Ilorin International AirportCFPV+5X2, Airport Rd, 240101, Ilorin, KwaraKwara
Dutse International AirportDutse, NigeriaDutse

Of these 13 international airports in Nigeria, only 5 are recognized worldwide for global transportation. Those are;

  1. Murtala Muhammed International Airport
  2. Mallam Aminu Kano International Airport
  3. Akanu Ibiam International Airport
  4. Port Harcourt International Airport
  5. Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport

The 5 Globally-Recognized International Airports in Nigeria

International airports are known to have facilities that can help with both exporting and importing. They also cover how people can move from one country to another. In Nigeria, these services are set up at 13 international airports. However, only 5 of the 13 international airports meet the requirements for international flight travel, which is a shame. Find below a list of the world-class international airports in Nigeria, where they are located in the country, and more.

1. Murtala Muhammed International Airport (MMIA)

General Murtala Muhammed, a former military leader of Nigeria who died in 1976, is honoured by the airport’s name. The airport had a name before, Lagos International Airport. It was renamed Murtala Muhammed Airport in the mid-1970s when the new international terminal was being built. This was in honour of a former military leader of Nigeria. The international terminal was made to look like Schiphol Airport in Amsterdam. The international airport terminal at MMIA was finished and put into use in 1978, but the public didn’t get to use it until March 15, 1979.

Even though the airport has been fixed up several times since the 1970s. After the federal government’s multi-billion naira program to remodel and fix up some airports across the country started in 2012, more extensive renovations took place in 2013. In 2014, the size of the lounge area was doubled, and new passenger-handling conveyor systems that can move more than 1,000 people an hour were put in.

2. Mallam Aminu Kano International Airport

This is also one of the international airports in Nigeria. The airport is one of Nigeria’s international air terminals. It is in the city of Kano, which is a business centre. Mallam Aminu Kano Airport serves the city of Kano, the whole state of Kano, and most of northern Nigeria. This has made it the main airport for the whole northern part of the country, serving it with a wide range of services.

Aminu Mallam Nigeria’s oldest international airport is Kano International Airport, named after a Nigerian politician named Aminu Mallam. History says the first plane to land in Nigeria was at Kano in 1922, but the airport didn’t open until 1936. During its first 30 years, it was an essential place for airlines to stop for fuel on long-haul flights between Europe and Africa.

With the Mallam Aminu Kano International Airport, everything looks good for Kano, the most commercial city in Nigeria, especially in the north. At a height of 1562ft/476m, Aminu Kano Airport has both international and domestic terminals. Before it became a federal airport, the Kano airport was a Royal Air power station. It was named after Mallam Aminu Kano, a well-known person from the state.

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3. Akanu Ibiam International Airport

Enugu International Airport, also called Akanu Ibiam International Airport, is in Enugu. It was named after Akanu Ibiam, a well-known doctor and politician. Many cities in the southeast of Nigeria, such as Awka, Onitsha, Aba, Nsukka, and parts of Kogi, Cross River, and Benue, use the airport. The Akanu Ibiam International Airport is both a local airport and an airport for people from all over the world because it can handle both. At a height of 466ft/142m, the airport is mostly used as a public air terminal.

The airport was closed on February 10, 2010, so the Federal Airport Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) could start making changes to meet the standards expected of an international airport. Then, on December 16, 2010, it was opened again. Since then, there have been many big changes at the international airport, from the buildings to the runways.

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4. Port Harcourt International Airport

Many tourists stop at Port Harcourt International Airport, whether going to or coming from Nigeria. Because of this, passenger traffic has grown a lot over the years, and the airport now serves more than a million people. Also, on October 25, 2018, President Muhammadu Buhari opened the airport’s new international terminals, which increased the number of people using the airport.

Port Harcourt International Airport, which is in Omagwa, Port Harcourt, is a functional international airport. The airport was built in 1950, and it opened for business a few years later. The oil city airport can handle both international and domestic flights, so it can be used for both. So, it has different terminals and offices for flights within the country and flights to other countries. The Port Harcourt Airport is mostly used for public services and is about 87 feet (27 metres) high.

5. Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport

The Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport was finished in 2000, but it didn’t open until 2002. The name of Nigeria’s first president, Nnamdi Azikiwe, was given to the airport. Since the airport opened, the number of people using it has grown significantly, with the most people using it in 2018 (more than 31%). The Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport is an international airport in Nigeria in a central location.

The Abuja Airport has both international and domestic flight terminals. It opened in 2002. The two terminals are linked by a similar runway that makes it easy to get from one to the other. The airport was named after President Nnamdi Azikiwe, who was the first president of Nigeria. The airport is in Abuja, which is in the Federal Capital Territory and is the country’s capital city. As the main airport serving Nigeria’s capital city, Abuja, it is also known as Abuja Airport. The airport terminal is about 20 km west of Abuja and 342m above sea level.


International airports are very important because they connect people and businesses from all over the world. They make it possible to go to different countries and make trade and commerce easier. This helps economies grow and develop. Whether you’re a traveller or a business owner, you now know why it’s important to have good international airports. Thanks for learning with us, and we hope you liked the article.