By Frank Kamuntu
Kampala: Having taken delivery of the first of its two brand new Airbus A330neos, we thought we would take a look at what routes Uganda Airlines plans to operate the aircraft on. Before the new A330neos arrival, Uganda Airlines was limited to flying short-haul routes within Africa to places like Nairobi, Lusaka, and Dar es Salaam.
According to the aviation enthusiast website, Planespotter.net, Uganda Airlines entire fleet was made up of just four Bombardier CRJ-900s with an average age of 1.6-years. Uganda Airlines plan is to operate the twin-engine regional jets on short-haul routes linking Kampala with other African capitals.
Uganda Airlines Is Targeting Tourists
Before the A330neos were ordered from Airbus, the government-backed airline saw tourism as a big money-maker for the country already accounting for nearly 8% of its GDP. While this was done pre-COVID-19, Uganda Airlines still sees tourism as the future of the airline.
We are going places this new year, from Entebbe to popular destinations around the World.
— Uganda Airlines (@UG_Airlines) January 4, 2021
Historically, the landlocked East African nation looked at Europe as a source of tourist revenue but later started to promote “The Pearl of Africa”, targeting to emerge markets in the Middle East and Asia. With the long-range A330neo aircraft in its fleet, Uganda Airlines can offer tourists non-stop flights directly to Entebbe International Airport (EBB). According to a recent tweet by the airlines, its first long-haul flights will be to the following destinations:
- London Heathrow (LHR)
- Dubai (DXB)
- Guangzhou (CAN)
- Mumbai (BOM)Uganda Airlines will initially fly to four long-haul destinations. Image GCmaps
The Uganda Tourist Board feels that the availability to fly non-stop to Uganda from Europe, the Middle East, and Asia will be a strong selling point. This, combined with the A330neos superior passenger comfort, should give Uganda an advantage over East African neighbours like Kenya and Tanzania.