FastJet progressively moving to daily flights on Mbeya route


(Posted 13th November 2013)

FastJet’s new domestic route from Dar es Salaam to Mbeya has quickly established itself it seems as demand for seats has already outstripped the available capacity after the route was launched just two weeks ago.

From 24th of November will a Sunday flight be added, up from initially three flights per week to four and according to information received will a further three flights be added come December 17th in time for the festive season, by then providing a daily departure to Mbeya.

The airline’s Chief Commercial Officer Richard Bodin was quoted in a media release, having said: ‘We are thrilled with the response to the launch of the Dar es Salaam to Mbeya route. Although we knew demand for the route was likely to be high, initial passenger numbers have certainly exceeded expectations. We are delighted to be able to once again meet our customers’ needs and add more capacity to this popular route’.

Additional information received also talks of added flights from Dar es Salaam to Johannesburg, where the airline launched three weekly flights in October on their first international route. Here Richard Bodin commented: ‘We are seeing solid demand for our recently launched international route from Dar es Salaam to Johannesburg and are currently looking at increasing capacity on this route’.

A regular source in Dar es Salaam has also confirmed that the load factor on the flights by South African Airways has significantly reduced, probably as a result of the alleged machinations used by SAA to keep FastJet off the route for some more time when the South African Department for Civil Aviation stopped FastJet on the eve of the initially announced launch date and required suddenly more documents, a move widely seen as protectionist and blatantly biased in favour of their own national airline. Said the source in a mail communication: ‘Let them get a taste of their own medicine now. They messed with us for long enough through over priced tickets and poor customer service because they knew we had no choice. Now the trend has reversed. From where we stand FastJet will soon have to go daily and then SAA will see the full impact of their monopolistic behaviour in the past. It is payback time’. Harsh words for sure but from all indications representative of the mood among travel agents and frequent flyers from Tanzania. Watch this space for breaking and regular news updates about Eastern Africa’s aviation sector.

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