A month ago, low-cost carrier Jambojet started selling flight tickets to Kigali and Mogadishu ahead of the maiden flights in November.
The clock is now ticking to the maiden flights – Sunday to Somolia capital Mogadishu and Monday to Kigali in Rwanda. The airline has not released booking figures for the launch flights.
With the new routes, the airline is exploring new markets to complement its local business, which has been struggling, with Jambojet recording losses. Increased international flights will enable more passengers to fly at a lower cost from its JKIA hub in Nairobi.
What it means for airline
Jambojet already operates flights to Entebbe in Uganda, a route that launched its foray in the international market.
The entry onto the Kigali route makes Jambojet the only low-cost airline to operate the route from Nairobi, which is dominated by Rwandair, Ethiopian Airlines and Kenya Airways.
“Our entry into the two markets is part of our regional expansion programme and brings to three the total number of routes we operate in the continent with the exception of those we fly to on behalf of Kenya Airways,” said Mr Allan Kilavuka, Chief Executive Officer, Jambojet.
The airline, fully owned by Kenya Airways, will fly once daily to the two destinations. With strong competition on these routes, it’s competitive edge will mainly be pricing.
Launching the flights will be easy. The hard part for Jambojet management is keeping the planes flying to these destinations and full of passengers.
The one-hour Nairobi-Kigali route will begin on Monday, November 25th at 14:35 and from Kigali at 16:15 with a promotional fare of Ksh11,240.
The Nairobi-Mogadishu route will operate from Sunday, November 24th departing Nairobi at 06:00 to arrive at 08:45. The fare will start from Ksh24,470 one way.
Brand new plane
Jambojet currently flies to five local destinations namely Malindi, Ukunda, Mombasa, Kisumu and Eldoret.
Recently, Jambojet acquired a brand new De Havilland Dash 8 -Q400 aircraft, a first of four aircraft that are expected this year, to boost the airline’s capacity as it looks to soar into more regional destinations.
Since inception in 2014, Jambojet, which was recently awarded the coveted IATA Operational Safety Audit certification (IOSA), has flown over three million passengers, 30% of whom are first-time flyers.