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RwandAir returns to the skies

The national flag carrier, RwandAir has finally resumed commercial flights after months of suspension due to the novel coronavirus. 

"We are back in the sky!" the airline said on August 1, as it operated the first flight to Dubai, United Arab Emirates.


"Our flight WB304 from Kigali to Dubai took off a moment ago," RwandAir said in a tweet.


Flight resumption follows the government decision to reopen airport operations for commercial flights.


RwandAir chief executive officer, Yvonne Manzi Makolo, told The New Times last month the carrier will embark on a gradual reopening strategy like many other airlines across the world.

“The number of routes will depend on which countries will have lifted their travel restrictions by then. We’ll start with those who are open,” she noted.

In the beginning, it will operate flights to African destinations including Lusaka, Libreville, Nairobi, Kilimanjaro, Dar es Salaam, Douala and Cotonou. 

RwandAir is among few airlines that have pushed ahead flight resumption, despite the pandemic that has gripped the air travel industry.

As airlines are returning to the skies, safety will be a number one priority for safe flying of passengers.

Carriers are making modifications to their in-flight services, and airports are implementing healthy safety measures to keep passengers safe.

Meals on board RwandAir will now be pre-packaged to reduce contact, while cabin crew will be wearing full protective gear.

The aircraft will be regularly cleaned and disinfected and all surfaces including tray tables, IFE screens and remote controls, armrests, seatbelts and overhead luggage bins are thoroughly disinfected to maintain hygiene. 

Passengers departing, transiting or arriving in Rwanda will be required to present a Covid-19 negative certificate taken within 72 hours before departure.

At the Kigali International Airport, self-check-in kiosks, thermal cameras and screening robots, and hand sanitizer dispensers have been put in place as part of the health measures.

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