The airline’s Chief Executive Officer and Group Managing Director, Dr. Titus Naikuni, who flew in with a high-level delegation from the Kenyan capital, said that the new flight between the UAE capital and Nairobi will deliver exceptional service to Abu Dhabi customers by providing a perfect gateway to Africa.
“Together with the alliances and partnerships that Kenya Airways belongs to, such as Sky Team and several code-share relationships including one with Etihad Airways, this new destination will enhance provision of air transport service by easing connections, thus making flights smoother and seamless for passengers,” explained Dr. Naikuni.
The introduction of flights between Abu Dhabi and Nairobi comes at a time when the airline is pursuing an aggressive network and fleet expansion strategy through its 10-year growth plan, Project Mawingu, which aims at growing the number of routes that it operates as well as its fleet.
Tony Douglas, Chief Executive Officer of ADAC, said: “The new connectivity between two major regions will contribute towards Abu Dhabi International Airport’s growth as an international hub and will enable the airport to act as the Middle East’s gateway to Africa. The flights will not only increase the choice of destinations from Abu Dhabi, but they will also give passengers flying from Africa the opportunity to experience the world-class service Abu Dhabi International Airport has to offer and the opportunity to experience one of the most dynamic capitals in the Middle East.”
Kenya Airways will operate three flights a week, on Monday, Wednesday and Friday using B737-800-NG aircraft departing from Nairobi at 1925 hours. The aircraft has 145 seating capacity divided between business and economy classes. The flights will arrive in Abu Dhabi at 0105 hours the following day and depart from Abu Dhabi at 0205 hours to arrive in Nairobi the same day at 0555 hours.
“The Abu Dhabi flight will provide UAE customers with increased options for travel between the Emirates and Africa and vice versa,” added Dr. Naikuni.
Kenya Airways code-share agreement with Etihad Airways, the national carrier of the UAE, will allow Kenya Airways’ passengers to seamlessly connect to Etihad Airways’ other destinations, and for Etihad Airways-originating passengers to seamlessly reach new destinations in Africa.
James Hogan, Etihad Airways President and Chief Executive Officer, said: “We welcome the launch of Kenya Airways’ new service between Nairobi and Abu Dhabi. It complements Etihad’s existing daily scheduled service between these two cities launched in 2011 – and supports the growing flows of people and capital investment between West Africa and the emerging markets across the Middle East, North and South East Asia and the Indian Subcontinent.
“We look forward to developing the strategic commercial partnership agreement with Kenya Airways, which allows both airlines to benefit from costs savings that can be achieved through operational synergies and greater collaboration. There are potential benefits in a number of areas including lounge access, cargo operations, pilot simulator training and procurement,” he said.
Abraham Joseph, Area Manager South Asia, Middle East, and North Africa for Kenya Airways, said: “Abu Dhabi was a natural choice for us as the second destination in the UAE as it adds to the Etihad Airways code-share, thus expanding the airline’s reach into the region and catering for customers from other parts of the world traveling to Africa. I am sure this will give our customers a wider choice of connectivity between the Middle East and Africa.”
Tuesday, July 2- 2013 @ 14:48 UAE local time (GMT+4) Replication or redistribution in whole or in part is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of Mediaquest FZ LLC.