Fly540 delays restarting direct flights to Kisumu

Fly540 delays restarting direct flights to Kisumu

Low-cost carrier Fly540 has pushed back plans to restart direct flights to Kisumu from Jomo Kenyatta International Airport in Nairobi, extending Jambojet’s dominance on the route.

The airline said in October said that it would restart Nairobi-Kisumu flights on December 1, 2021, in a move that was expected to increase competition on the route served by carriers such as Safarilink, Jambojet and Kenya Airways.

But Fly540 chief executive Don Smith told the Business Daily that the airline has pushed forward plans to restart Kisumu flights to a later date, saying rising cases of Covid-19 in Kenya has made it impossible for the airline to resume operations on the route.

“We have pushed forward plans to restart Nairobi- Kisumu flights due to Covid situation in the country,” said Mr Smith.

He did not, however, disclose or provide more details as to how rising cases of Covid-19 cases has stopped the airline from restarting operations on the route.

The airline had announced initially that it would fly once every day when it resumes Nairobi-Kisumu flights down from the two daily flights it operated before the coronavirus outbreak that forced it to ground its operations on the route in 2020. Introductory fare

Passengers travelling to Kisumu from Nairobi were expected to pay an introductory fare of Sh3,450 for a one-way ticket, depending on the date of travel.

The airline stopped passenger operations on the route last March due to Covid-19 travel restrictions imposed by the government to stop the spread of the disease.

Mr Smith told the Business Daily earlier that the carrier that also plies other domestic routes such as Malindi and Lamu would deploy a Dash 8 Q 300 on the route.

Most passengers using the Nairobi-Kisumu route are either on a business trip, attending conferences, on tourism trips or visiting their rural homes.

“We seem to link the flight with other international destinations such as Entebbe,” said Mr Smith.Besides restarting flights on the lucrative Nairobi-Kisumu route, the airline had a few months ago announced plans to start flights to Ukunda from its hub in Nairobi.The airline said then that passengers on the route would pay an average fare of Sh10,540 on a one-way ticket, which is cheaper than its competitors on the route.The other airlines that operate on these routes are, Jambojet, Kenya Airways, 748 Air Services, Renegade Air and Safarilink.

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