EMIRATES MOVE LEAVES OTHER AIRLINES TO SCRATCH THEIR HEADS
Ugandan travelers, but also those flying abroad from Nairobi and Dar es Salaam have reason to flock to Emirates in even greater numbers, when it became known that the airline had with immediate effect scrapped all fuel supplements introduced in recent weeks. The swift reaction by Emirates to the sharp fall in jet fuel prices in recent days has however left other airline executives in Kampala wondering, as they had no word as yet on Sunday night from their own head offices how to react, leaving for the time being at least their own fuel surcharges in place. Competition, especially during low season periods, is intense amongst airlines flying into Entebbe, and the arrival of more recent ‘newcomers’ like Turkish Airlines, which started out with extraordinarily low fares, has stirred the travel market more than some established airlines would have liked, although during the high season, when demand for seats in and out of Uganda peaks, seats still sell at a premium, if any are to be had.
A regular source at an airline flying from Entebbe into the region has expressed relief over the fall in global fuel prices but was cautious as to when the cost of JetA1 fuel in Entebbe would be reduced, saying ‘fuel suppliers for JetA1 are always quick to raise pump prices but slow in reducing them, so I am not sure when we can lift our fuel supplements on tickets, just bear with us for a little while’.
Emirates flies daily with a B777 between Dubai and Entebbe, via Addis Ababa, and offers convenient connections from their Dubai hub across the entire world with a special attraction being onward flights on the sky-giant A 380 aircraft, which is now increasingly being deployed by Emirates and which has found great favour with Ugandan travelers, who often ask for a connection to fly the world’s biggest passenger aircraft to tell the story when they get home. Dubai stop overs are also popular amongst travelers from East Africa as packages are attractively priced and shopping in Dubai still remains good value for money, besides the relative ease with which Visa can be obtained through the airline’s offices.
Watch this space.