Air Uganda, RwandAir harmonisation to fight KQ dominance

RwandAir (WB) and AirUganda (U7) are set to harmonise ticket prices on flights between Kigali and Entebbe, this was announced by the offices of the two national carriers after signing a code share agreement on the same flights.

RwandAir (WB) and AirUganda (U7) are set to harmonise ticket prices on flights between Kigali and Entebbe, this was announced by the offices of the two national carriers after signing a code share agreement on the same flights.

Air Uganda’s Chief Executive Officer, Hugh Fraser told Bussiness Times after both airliners announced a code sharing agreement that the harmonisation of ticket prices is meant to make both airliners a dominant player in the region that has been largely dominated by the Kenyan airliner KQ.

Fraser said that for both airlines, to make a stronger presence in the market travel agents would also need to offer customers the same combinable fares on the same tickets, making it cheaper and simpler for their clients to use both flights.

“The deal will provide additional benefits and services to both companies, as we are planning to reintroduce our Saturday flight to Kigali which we had cancelled,” Fraser said. 

This partnership will also allow passengers to enjoy a day return from both Uganda and Rwanda whilst bypassing Nairobi, saving time combining the nonstop flights of both airlines.

According to the deal, RwandAir and Air Uganda will offer passengers daily morning and evening flights between Entebbe and Kigali. Air Uganda will operate a morning flight at 0900HRS (local time Entebbe) from Entebbe to Kigali and depart Kigali at 0915HRS (Local time Kigali) for Entebbe.

RwandAir will operate a flight out of Kigali in the evening at 1900HRS (Local time Kigali), and depart from Entebbe at 2120HRS (local time Entebbe) for Kigali.

The code share that was penned on Monday evening will also enable travel agents to sell combinable fares on both airlines using the same ticket. Ticketing for these flights can be done at travel agents, Air Uganda or RwandAir’s offices in Rwanda, Uganda and throughout East Africa.

The national carrier’s CEO Rene Janata said that there was no choice but to joint efforts and work together where revenues and passengers will be shared. 

“This is part of our expanding plan as the carrier is extending its network and presence in the region. This deal should be welcomed more especially by the travel agencies,” Janata said.

In April, the national carrier signed a leasing agreement with the world’s largest aircraft leaser General Electric Capital Aviation Services (GECAS). The deal would see the national carrier receive two Boeing 737-500s, one to be delivered in May and July this year.

Janata explained that the delay in the delivering of the aircraft is because its being painted in Germany with RwandAir logos and that the first Boeing 737-500 will be in Kigali in the next two weeks and the next will be delivered in August this year. 

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