Kenya Airways’ second Dreamliner enroute to Nairobi

KENYA AIRWAYS RECEIVES THEIR SECOND B787-8 DREAMLINER

(Posted 21st June 2014)

Later today will Kenya Airways welcome their second Dreamliner in Nairobi, after taking formal delivery yesterday in Charleston / South Carolina, Boeing’s second B787 assembly plant, and then flying the new bird straight home to Jomo Kenyatta International Airport in a 15 hour nonstop journey.

The new aircraft, registered with the KCAA as 5Y-KZB, will within a matter of days enter commercial service after all crews had already been trained and certified on the new aircraft type after the sistership had arrived in Kenya on 05th of April.

Dreamliner number three will follow already in July while by October another four of the new birds will be flying Kenya’s colours through the African skies. Additional three deliveries of the B787 are expected in 2015.

It was also established that a third B777-300ER be delivered next month too, substantially boosting capacity for Kenya’s national airline.

(Seen here, courtesy of Kenya Airways, senior staff from the airline and the Kenya Civil Aviation Authority on board of the aircraft with Director Flight Operations Capt. Mwangi and two of the cabin crew at the hand over dinner in Charleston)

The B787’s will replace the aged B767-300ER’s giving Kenya Airways the full advantage of fuel savings of some 20 percent while at the same time offering increased range, passenger and cargo uplift in the new and larger B787.

Questions are still being asked of the Kenyan government over their retention of the hugely damaging VAT imposition on new aircraft and aircraft spares, a law which is likely to tear a deep hole into Kenya Airways’ cash stash though it is understood that Kenyan airlines, supported by AFRAA and IATA, will make further representation to parliament to have the tax removed, mainly in light of competing airlines not having to bear such tax burdens, giving them a cost advantage this year alone of 14 billion Kenya Shillings, the figure KQ has to pay to the Kenya Revenue Authority for their new birds.

In a related development was it also learned that Kenya Airways, perhaps as early as July, intends to boost Mombasa flights by introducing direct services from the Indian Ocean port city to Entebbe and Dar es Salaam, without the need for passengers flying in either direction to travel via Nairobi and clear custom and immigration there. The launch in particular of the Entebbe service is clearly aimed to promote additional trade with the port of Mombasa but also facilitate tourist visitors from Uganda to fly to Mombasa with less hassle.

Meanwhile has Kenya Airways’ CEO Dr. Titus Naikuni also confirmed that the airline does plan to launch flights from Nairobi to Tel Aviv. He made the announcement at a dinner hosted for a visiting high ranking political and business delegation from Israel which had come to Kenya to discuss closer cooperation in a number of areas of mutual interest, including increased security cooperation. No date for the new flights was however given at this time. Watch this space for breaking and regular aviation news from across Eastern Africa.

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