Uganda Airlines is set to be the latest to start flights into Mombasa’s Moi International Airport.
Ugandan Consul General in Mombasa, Katureeba Tayebwa, said yesterday the inaugural touchdown will be on November 11.
“We are confirming that Uganda is joining the list of other airlines in colouring the regional airspace. The entry of Uganda Airlines is not to compete but to add value and help create a more enabling environment to thrive and boost the economy of the East African region,” he said.
Ambassador Tayebwa said the new service will be a relief to the many Ugandan traders who use the Port of Mombasa to import and export cargo.
Tourists keen to sample what both countries have to offer will also have quick flight time of one hour and 50 minutes between Entebbe and Mombasa.
After a suspension that lasted nearly 20 years, Uganda Airlines took to the skies again in August this year with a flight to Nairobi, which the carrier hopes will usher in a profitable new era.
Two new Bombardier jetliners bought from Canada earlier in the year already fly to Mogadishu, Dar es Salaam and Juba with plans to connect to destinations such as Kilimanjaro in Tanzania.
Sources at the airline said routes to other countries including Democratic Republic of Congo, Ethiopia, Rwanda, Zimbabwe, Ghana and South Africa are on the radar.
Uganda Airlines Sales Manager for Kenya, Lenny Malasi, said yesterday they are keen to make a mark in the market and hope to add to their existing fleet with Airbus planes.
He said they have introduced promotional fares on the Entebbe-Mombasa route with flights on Monday, Wednesday and Friday.
“The importance of Mombasa route is there for all to see. We have joint ventures to promote, among others beach and bush safaris. Remember the Kenyan Coast is popular with its undulating beaches while Uganda is home to the rare mountain gorillas,” Mr Malasi said.
The revival of Uganda Airlines after being grounded in 2001 amid financial difficulties is expected to help tap opportunities in agriculture, mining, tourism as well as oil and gas sectors.
Uganda ranks as the top market for tourists from Africa coming into Kenya and the Mombasa flights are expected to boost the numbers.
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