First non-stop flight from Lufthansa’s Frankfurt hub to East Africa's economic powerhouse and leisure destination
With a grand welcome, Lufthansa’s introduced its newest service to Africa yesterday connecting Nairobi with the airline’s Frankfurt Hub, one of Europe’s key airports and gateway to hundreds of global destinations.
“Our arrival in Nairobi signifies an important milestone for the entire Lufthansa Group. We are excited to serve this amazing city, East Africa's economic powerhouse and the gateway to leisure destinations that attract tourists from Germany and around the world”, said Lufthansa Group Board Member and Chief Officer Corporate Human Resources & Legal Affairs, Dr. Bettina Volkens, at press conference held with Kenyan Tourism officials in honor of the new route.
As of October 25th, Lufthansa will operate three weekly flights on the Nairobi route in the 2015-2016 Winter Season (Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday) using a next generation Boeing 737-700 BBJI, operated by Private Air, a Switzerland-based airline that has a long history of successful and reliable operation of flights on behalf of Lufthansa. Known as the “BBJ”, the aircraft will operate in a two-class configuration offering intercontinental Business and Economy Class cabins.
Together with Swiss International Airlines this Winter Season the Lufthansa Group will operate eight weekly flights to and from Nairobi, offering customers seamless connections to hundreds of destinations around the globe through two of Europe's leading hubs.
Already due to increased demand during the upcoming Christmas travel season Lufthansa will add over a dozen flights on the Nairobi route using wide body Airbus A340-300 aircraft.
As originally planned the airline intends to increase its services on the Nairobi route to five weekly flights during the summer months to be operated by an A340-300.
“The Lufthansa Group is the natural bridge between the business communities of Germany, Switzerland and Kenya. I am sure the direct flights from Frankfurt as well as our future expansion plans for the summer will lend to even closer ties”, noted Tobias Ernst, Lufthansa’s Nairobi-based General Manager for Kenya.
Lufthansa’s introduction of directs flights to Nairobi will support the already bourgeoning economic relationship Germany and Kenya enjoy. Germany remains Kenya's third largest export market in Europe after the UK and the Netherlands. In 2014, Kenya exported goods worth some KES 8 billion to Germany. At the same time, Germany exported goods just under KES 20 billion to the East African nation.
An important facet of the economic relationship between both countries remains the robust tourism figures from Germany. According to the Kenyan Tourism Board, Germany is the third most importance source of tourists to Kenya.
“We have waited a long time for this day, building important bonds with the local tourism industry that will bolster the relationship between the Lufthansa Group and Kenyan business,” noted Ernst.
The Lufthansa Group has a proud history in Kenya. Swiss offers five weekly flights between Nairobi and its Zurich hub, while Lufthansa Cargo has named one of its Boeing 777-200 freighters “Jambo Kenya,” symbolizing the significance of Kenya and the African continent on the whole as one of its most important growth markets for global air freight services.