Flutterwave has announced the integration of its payment solution into the International Air Transport Association’s (IATA) Financial Gateway (IFG). This integration aims to streamline payment processing for international airlines and travel agencies by enabling them to accept payments in local currencies through various channels. Flutterwave’s inclusion in the IFG will allow Africans to pay their airline fees using cards, bank transfers, mobile money, and other payment methods available on the platform.
Previously, airlines in Nigeria faced challenges as they had to block travel agencies and sell tickets directly to customers in dollars instead of the local currency. This situation arose due to the cash flow issues experienced by airlines, with the Central Bank of Nigeria taking an extended time to release the dollar equivalent for tickets sold in naira. However, the collaboration between Flutterwave and IFG now empowers airlines to have complete control over the entire payment and settlement process, simplifying the initiation and completion of transactions. This integration with Flutterwave will significantly ease the burden of slow repatriation of funds from flight tickets sold in local African currencies.
Foreign airlines and travel agencies seeking to collect payments in local currencies will greatly benefit from this partnership with Flutterwave, as it allows them to leverage cards and indigenous payment methods. By supporting a wide range of payment options, this collaboration enhances the overall customer experience while promoting the growth of the aviation industry in Africa.
In a recent press release, Olugbenga “GB” Agboola, CEO and Founder of Flutterwave, emphasized the significance of the partnership with IATA. Agboola stated, “Africa is projected to be one of the fastest-growing aviation regions over the next two decades, with an annual expansion rate of nearly 5%, according to the International Air Transport Association (IATA). To further accelerate this growth, we need to ensure that airlines can easily establish operations across the continent and seamlessly receive payments from their customers. This partnership with IATA addresses the payment challenges global airlines venturing into Africa face. We hope that this encourages more global airlines to expand their presence in Africa.”
The integration of Flutterwave’s payment technology with IATA’s Financial Gateway marks a significant milestone in simplifying payment processes for airlines and travel agencies operating in Africa. With the ability to accept payments in local currencies, the partnership promises to enhance accessibility and convenience for customers while promoting the growth of the aviation industry across the continent.