Flag carrier Kenya Airways (KQ) says it will launch a four-times-weekly service between the coastal city of Mombasa and Dubai starting December 15. The service will be operated using a Boeing 737-800 and increases KQ’s frequencies to Dubai to fourteen round trips a week. Kenya Airways to launch Mombassa-Dubai next month.

The carrier says “introduction of this route is in response to demand from the market and is expected to boost the Kenyan coastal region tourism industry through direct access to and from the Middle East.”

The outbound leg will originate in Nairobi before stopping in Mombasa where it will start the sector to Dubai. “The Dubai – Mombasa route will give tourists from the Middle East, Russia, Northern Europe, and Australia direct access to the wonders of coast region tourism and hospitality industry.”

Reverse traffic from Mombasa is expected to be driven by holidays and religious pilgrimages. Traders of electronics, clothes, and other consumer goods are another catchment that “will benefit from the belly cargo capacity that will be available on the flight. Additionally, the flights offer increased capacity for direct exports of seafood and fresh produce directly to the Middle East.”

Kenya Airways Chief Commercial and Customer Officer, Julius Thairu, says that the introduction of this route is strategic because it will open up the Kenya coastal region. It will “boost the tourism and hospitality industry as well as stimulate trade to the coastal city. This launch is part of Kenya Airways network expansion strategy and commitment towards supporting the recovery of the tourism and hospitality industry in Kenya.” 

Kenya Airways reduced its losses in HY1. Earlier this month, the airline’s pilots went on a four-day strike that ended on November 9 after being summoned by a court ruling. The airline and government accused pilot union KALPA of “economic sabotage.” The strike left thousands of passengers stranded.

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Michael Wakabi

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