LOW–COST airline fastjet will on Wednesday launch its maiden flight to Zimbabwe’s premier tourist destination, Victoria Falls as competition in the local aviation sector intensifies.
Fastjet’s one way fare to Victoria Falls will cost US$38, giving torrid competition to cash-strapped national carrier Air Zimbabwe which is charging US$74 for the same trip excluding departure tax of US$15 under an ongoing promotion. Victoria Falls is one of Air Zimbabwe’s most lucrative routes outside Harare-Johannesburg.
The launch comes after the Civil Aviation Authority of Zimbabwe (Caaz) granted an Air Operating Certificate to the airline recently.
Fastjet will be flying the Harare – Victoria Falls route three times a week.
The country’s civil aviation sees airlines trebling to 40 in 2018 from the current figures. At peak 34 airlines which include German’s Lufthansa and British Airways were landing in Harare.
The emergence of low cost airline on Zimbabwe’s airspace under government’s open sky policy is now seen as an aggressive strategy to woo big airlines to Zimbabwe that left after relations with the West soured over alleged human rights abuses and violations of property rights following the chaotic land reform program.
Caaz’s plan also seeks boost the country’s tourism sector. Official figures show that the tourism sector is projected to grow by 5,1%, buoyed by aggressive destination marketing efforts.-Staff Writer