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RwandAir set to fly to Gatwick London in 2017

Rwanda national carrier RwandAir has announced it will start flying to Gatwick, London’s busiest airport by 2017 as it looks to grow its customer base.

John Mirenge, the airline’s chief executive officer said the carrier was currently negotiating with the UK Civil Aviation Authority to start flights to Gatwick. The move, he added, is part of the airline’s expansion plans that also include opening of new routes to other parts of Europe and East Asia.

Last year, the airline officials told Parliament that they were in final stages of seeking approvals to start flights to these two regions as part of the wider expansion drive by RwandAir.

However, RwandAir will first open routes to Harare in Zimbabwe, Mumbai (India) before expanding to Western Europe, Mirenge said while launching the airline’s first commercial flights to Abidjan, Ivory Coast on Friday. He said the airline is ready to ply the Kigali-Gatwick route any time it gets the green light by the UK civil aviation body.

Recently, the airline acquired its first A330-200 Airbus aircraft to boost its fleet and capacity to compete globally. It is waiting for another wide body A330-300 Airbus to further boost its fleet and be able to serve planned destinations in Europe and East Asia.

“Flights to Abidjan are currently tagged to our already existing destinations, including Accra in Ghana, and will be served with three weekly flights; on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Saturdays. It will be operated by the B737-700NG and B737-800NG aircraft,” Mirenge noted.

Last month the airline launched flights to Cotonou, Benin, another West Africa nation. The opening of the Abidjan route means the airline’s now flies to 19 destinations, including Nairobi, Entebbe, Mombasa, Bujumbura, Lusaka, Juba, Douala, Dar es Salaam, Kilimanjaro, Cotonou, Johannesburg, Dubai, Lagos, Libreville and Brazzaville.


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