Is Delta Discriminating Against Nigerian Travelers?

Nigerian Travelers

Is Delta Discriminating Against Nigerian Travelers?

Chimamanda Negozi Adichie posted on December 22, 2017 a claim that Delta Air Lines purposefully targets Nigerian travelers in enforcing one of its policies intended to prevent fraud (the reason Delta gives for the policy).

In the post, Adichie, an author who has written books to include Americanah and Half of a Yellow Sun, discusses an encounter she had in 2010 when she was required to produce her credit card before the airline would allow her parents, who Adichie purchased the tickets for using her credit card, to check in for the flight.  Her parents were bound for Nigeria.

According to Adichie,

I was shocked and unbelieving. My father, a 78-year-old diabetic who had an important family event to attend in Nigeria, was worried about missing his flight. I, unwell, was forced to dash to the airport as quickly as I could. I then ‘physically presented’ myself and my credit card.

My parents ended up missing their flight and were re-booked on the next flight.


Adichie said since 2010, nothing has changed, and she’s calling on the airline to change the policy, saying that it targets people from Nigeria, since many of her friends traveling to Europe and other places are not required to present the credit card.

While it does seem Delta is unique in this policy (please correct me if I’m wrong), it does not seem to target Nigeria specifically.  The Points Guy wrote a post warning about this last year after he flew to Ghana.  He sent a warning to people to make sure to have your credit card for check in, and if you book a flight on miles for somebody, make sure to use the person who will be traveling card so that they don’t run into the same problem.

This day and age preventing fraud is important, but it does seem like a policy that doesn’t exactly fit with where we are today in a technological world.  I’ve never experienced this, but I’m sure it must be annoying to deal with because sometimes I might book on a card that I don’t use for my everyday purchases and wouldn’t necessarily have with me.

Bottom line:  Hopefully this post makes people aware of the requirement and helps alleviate as many travelers as possible from ever being caught up with this policy.  Has anybody else had travel with this policy?


About Jonathan (509 Articles)
I love traveling, politics, history, and baseball!

15 Comments on Is Delta Discriminating Against Nigerian Travelers?

  1. Last fall, I booked the ticket to NBO for my wife. Delta explicitly require acknowledgement of their credit card policy. Meanwhile, we misplaced the CC used and the bank reissued another one with a different CC number. So I had to make a trip to the local airport and the airport personnel verified my identity along with the new credit card. Our friend had booked the tickets for another in the group who was flying from a different airport. She also had to make a trip to the airport for CC & ID verification. IMO, the title is (perhaps intentionally) misleading and mischaracterizing the policies of Delta. “Nigerian Travelers” not the same as “travelers to Nigeria (or Kenya or Ghana).” BA needs to have have some basic journalistic ethical guidelines for bloggers!

    • The article is based on a post by somebody who explicitly is referring to how this targets Nigerians, not simply people traveling to Nigeria, which is the point of her post and what led to the article being written. My suggestion is if you are going to call out somebody’s ethics, you should work on kindergarten-level reading comprehension. 🙂

      • Your title makes a specific reference to discrimination of “Nigerian Travelers” whereas you conclude: “it does not seem to target Nigeria specifically” indicating that Delta has the same policy for travelers to some other countries. Given the title you have an obligation to be more emphatic that Delta is not discriminating.

        • The title asks a question. The article answers it. Question marks designate a question. The question is asked in reference to a post from claim the author is making. This a pretty simple concept that seems lost on you, so hope mapping it out this helps bring it down to your level. If people read the article, they should be able to draw these conclusions by themselves.

          • You seem to be more interested in insulting me than trying to understand what I am trying to say! Your attitude only reaffirms my earlier comment about BA guidelines for their bloggers.

          • The person who started the conversation by questioning the ethics of the blog/writer is accusing somebody of insulting them…interesting. My attitude is that when somebody questions my ethics and tells me how to write my blog, I walk them through why their assessment is incorrect.

  2. People have to stop blaming airlines for discrimination in these situations. Delta isn’t the only airline to have credit card verification processes in place. It’s quite common for airlines in Africa/Middle East/Asia to do a credit card verification at check-in due to a lot of fraud.

  3. EVA Air has the same policy. In November I flew from ORD to TPE and was required to present my credit card. Luckily they were up-front about this during the booking process so I made a note to myself to specifically bring that card with me.

  4. Nigeria is literally the scam capital of the world. Delta would be insane not to take precautions. This article is asinine.

    • The article doesn’t say Delta should or shouldn’t have this policy. It merely writes about a policy and people who have been impacted and makes people aware of that policy so they don’t find themselves in a similar situation.

      • On the contrary, you do state your opinion that “… it does seem like a policy that doesn’t exactly fit with where we are today in a technological world.”

        • “It does seem” is not an opinion, it’s merely a conjecture that this policy exists when people make purchases on a daily basis using credit cards online and don’t have to show their cards to receive the product. Therefore, it’s stating that there are aspects of the policy that certainly can be questioned on a global scale, having nothing to do with what the Facebook poster was complaining about. That is not the same as saying the policy is good or the policy is bad.

  5. Who really gives a rat’s arse?

    Well over half the national economy of Nigeria is based on fraud. There are more fraud and con artists in Nigeria (and some neighboring countries) than there are anyplace else on Earth. The smartest move would be for Delta to force cash-only payments from anybody holding a Nigerian passport. No cash? Swim.

  6. I would agree with the original poster above that the article is clickbait and designed to elicit anger based on supposed injustice based on profiling of people from a country. Instead it’s a policy affecting multiple countries and not even specifically residents of that country.

    I’ve seen a lot of clickbait in BA lately. Must hard generating legit impressions for credit card ads by writing something interesting.

    • The post on Facebook specifically attacks Delta’s policy, claiming it specifically targets Nigeria. As the article clearly notes, in response to the Facebook post, this policy is not specific to Nigeria. Therefore, the title is meant to specifically address the claim that is being made on Facebook by this author and then the question is discussed in the body of this article. The woman is essentially claiming this discriminates against, specifically, people of Nigeria. The article uses that concept to posit a question, and the article answers it.

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