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AFRICA AND MIDDLE EAST ROUTE UPDATES

By: Sebastián Polito

During the Dubai Airshow, which took place this year from November 13-17, an airline made a major announcement regarding its fleet, entering long-range aircraft for the first time.

flydubai ordered a total of 30 Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner planes valued at USD 11 billion, to be delivered starting in 2026.

In addition to flydubai, considering the UAE, Emirates placed a large order for Airbus and Boeing aircraft. The airline ordered an additional 90 Boeing 777-9s, 777-8s and 5 787s, worth $52 billion, and an additional 15 Airbus A350-900s, worth $6 billion. Emirates now has a total order backlog of 310 widebody planes and will continue to take deliveries of new aircraft until 2035.


As for routes, Royal Air Jordanian confirmed the resumption of operations between Amman and Manchester from the second quarter of 2024. Currently, both cities do not have non-stop services, with London being the only UK connection to Jordan. Furthermore, with the start of the 2024 summer season, airlines are beginning to announce new routes, which will begin between April and June of next year.


Air Algérie

The company confirmed it will open a new route to Europe as of March 31st2024. Air Algérie will operate seven times a week between Algiers and London Gatwick with Boeing 737-800 aircraft configured for 148 passengers.

In addition to Gatwick airport, the airline currently offers the following schedule to London Heathrow from the Algerian capital: Between Algiers and Heathrow, Air Algérie operates with Airbus A330-200s and Boeing 737-800s.

Ethiopian.


Last November 15th, the carrier inaugurated its flights between Addis Ababa and Bangui. Initially, Ethiopian scheduled these operations with a stopover in Juba in both directions, but they ended up being non-stop. Ethiopian Airlines will operate three weekly services on Boeing 737 MAX 8 aircraft.


Addis Ababa, Douala, Entebbe, Nairobi and Yaounde are the destinations from Bangui Airport, Central African Republic.


Etihad

The carrier will begin flights between Abu Dhabi and Nice as of June 15th2024. Being seasonal, services are planned until mid-September 2024, with the following schedule:

At present, in the UAE-France market, the airline operates between Abu Dhabi and Paris with Airbus A350-1000 and Boeing 787-10 Dreamliner jets.


flydubai

During the Dubai Airshow 2023, flydubai announced that it will enter the widebody market after ordering Boeing 787-9 Dreamliners for its fleet. The 787s, which will be 30 for now, will commence service for the airline effective 2026, joining the current order for 130 Boeing 737 MAX 8s, to be delivered over the next few years. The flydubai fleet consists of the following:

Boeing 737-800: 30

Boeing 737 MAX: 8: 48

Boeing 737 MAX 9: 3


FlyEbril

The carrier launched two new routes to Dubai from Iraq between late October and early November. Both will be carried by UR Airlines’ Airbus A320-200 aircraft, configured for 180 passengers.

Baghdad


FlyNamibia

On October 29th, the company inaugurated its flights between Walvis Bay and Cape Town. FlyNamibia will operate four times a week on Westair Aviation’s Embraer 145s with capacity for 48 passengers.

Walvis Bay airport has flights to Cape Town, Johannesburg, Saint Helena and Windhoek.

flynas


Starting in December, flynas will commence six routes from Madinah, Saudi Arabia. The airline will operate with Airbus A320-200 and Airbus A320neo aircraft.


Four will be international and the remaining routes will be cabotage:

Ibom Air

The Nigerian carrier began international operations in mid-October with the launch of flights to Ghana. Services will be performed from Lagos using Airbus A320 and CRJ-900 planes.

Kenya Airways

Beginning February 14th2024, Kenya Airways will fly to Somalia, with the new connection between Nairobi and Mogadishu. At the time of publication, the airline will operate three weekly on Embraer 190 aircraft.

Monday, Thursday and Saturday

This route is currently operated by Daallo Airlines on Tuesdays, Fridays and Saturdays with Boeing 737-400s.

LAM Mozambique

The company will start flights to Cape Town as of December 12th. According to its website, LAM will serve three times a week between Maputo and Cape Town with CRJ jets.

Tuesday, Thursday and Sunday

LAM currently flies to Johannesburg from four cities in Mozambique:

Nouvelair Tunisie


As of April 2nd, 2024, Nouvelair will inaugurate operations between Tunis and Casablanca. Flights will be carried out on Airbus A320-200 aircraft with capacity for 180 passengers.

Casablanca will be the airline’s first destination to Morocco from Tunisia.


Qatar Airways

Qatar made its last service, so far, between Doha and Windhoek, Namibia, last November 22nd. The company had three weekly services on the 218-seat Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner.


Namibia lost its non-stop operations to Doha, in addition to possible connections to and from the airline’s hub.

Regarding new routes, Qatar Airways plans to start flights between Doha and Neom Bay, Saudi Arabia, effective December 9th. The operations are subject to government approval, but are available for sale on the airline’s website.


Services will be performed twice weekly with Airbus A320-200 aircraft:

The company currently offers seven routes between Qatar and Saudi Arabia:


Royal Jordanian

Starting in April 3rd, 2024, the airline expects to resume flights between Amman and Manchester for the high season. Operations are not for sale, but there is a tentative schedule:


Jordan’s capital city has services to London, being its only connection to the United Kingdom. British Airways and Royal Jordanian operate from Heathrow, while Wizz Air UK from Gatwick.


Rwandair

The carrier restarted in November flights between Kigali and Mumbai with a stopover in Entebbe, Uganda. According to its website, Rwandair will operate twice weekly on Boeing 737-800 jets.

South African


Effective December 13th, South African will inaugurate flights between Johannesburg and Gqeberha (Port Elizabeth). The company will offer twice-daily services with SunExpress Boeing 737-800s.

Airlink, CemAir and FlySafair currently operate this route, offering almost 90 weekly flights between the three airlines.

TAAG


TAAG originally programmed two flights per week with Boeing 737-700 aircraft from Luanda.


Turkish Airlines

Starting July 9th next year, Turkish intends to boost its flight frequency between Istanbul, Port Louis and Antananarivo. The carrier serves this route, to Mauritius and Madagascar, twice a week with Airbus A330-300 planes.

The airline will add a new flight on Tuesdays.

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