Dubai-based flydubai’s inaugural flight touched down today at Kilimanjaro International Airport (JRO) increasing capacity to Tanzania and further expanding its network in Africa to twelve destinations.
Flydubai, will offer six flights a week to Kilimanjaro, three of which are via a stop in the capital, Dar es Salaam and will increase the total number of flights to Tanzania to 14 flights a week.
The aircraft touched down at 07:45 (Kilimanjaro local time) and on board the flight was a delegation led by Sudhir Sreedharan, Senior Vice President, Commercial Operations (GCC, Subcontinent and Africa) for flydubai. The delegation was met on arrival by Hon Prof Makame Mbarawa MB, Minister for Works, Transport and Communication, Mr Gregory George Teu, Chairman of the Board of Kilimanjaro Airports Development Company (KADCO), the Board of Directors of the KADCO, the Regional Commissioners for Kilimanjaro and Arusha, representatives of the District Commissioners, Members of Parliament, Tanzania Tourist Board, together with representatives of the local tourism industry.
As part of the inaugural programme, flydubai, showcased its new Boeing 737 MAX 8 aircraft which it unveiled for the first time at the Dubai Airshow in November 2017.
The service to Kilimanjaro sees the total number of flydubai’s destinations in Tanzania increase to three, along with Dar es Salaam and Zanzibar. The carrier began operations to Tanzania in 2014 and has become increasingly popular among travellers from Dubai and the GCC as a tourist destination, and is seeing a steady growth in passenger numbers.
Kilimanjaro International Airport is located between the regions of Kilimanjaro and Arusha in Northern Tanzania. The airport is the major gateway to the Kilimanjaro region, a main international tourism destination that includes Mount Kilimanjaro, Arusha National Park, Ngorongoro Crater and Serengeti National Park. Only a few international carriers operate to Kilimanjaro and flydubai will be the first airline to provide direct air links from the UAE.
Ghaith Al Ghaith, Chief Executive Officer of flydubai, commented on the inaugural: ”With our service to Kilimanjaro, we are responding to a growing demand for travel between the UAE and Tanzania. flydubai is the first UAE airline to offer direct air links to Kilimanjaro with the aim to connect this market to Dubai and beyond, and offer travellers more choice and flexibility. Passengers will have the opportunity to connect from Dubai onwards to more than 250 destinations.”
Hon Prof Makame MB, Minister for Works, Transport and Communication, said: “I’m very glad to welcome flydubai to our ‘Gateway to Africa’s Wildlife Heritage’. On behalf of the Government and the KADCO Management we would like to thank you for working tirelessly together to make this new service possible and no doubt this route will be a success.”
Sudhir Sreedharan, Senior Vice President Commercial (GCC, Subcontinent and Africa) at flydubai, who led flydubai’s inaugural delegation, said: “We are delighted to see our service to Kilimanjaro take off today, as it marks our twelfth destination in our network in Africa and the third point in Tanzania. Our service to Kilimanjaro follows an increase in passenger demand and reflects flydubai’s commitment to open up underserved markets. We look forward to offering six weekly flights on this route and to connecting travellers from across flydubai’s network with the Kilimanjaro region and vice versa.”
Emirates will codeshare on this route and as part of the Emirates flydubai partnership, passengers will have greater choice for onward travel from Dubai to hundreds of destinations across the world.
flydubai operates flights to twelve destinations in Africa, including Addis Ababa, Alexandria, Asmara, Djibouti, Entebbe, Hargeisa, Juba, Khartoum and Port Sudan, as well as Dar es Salaam, Kilimanjaro and Zanzibar.