TURKISH TO DOUBLE AFRICAN DESTINATIONS BY END 2013
A source at Turkish Airlines in Nairobi has confirmed that the airline is set to double its African destinations by the end of next year. Presently flying from Istanbul to 20 destinations on the continent, mainly using narrow body B737-800 and B737-900 aircraft, including the East African gateways of Nairobi, Dar es Salaam, Entebbe and of late even Kigali, THY is set to use additional aircraft deliveries in coming months to progressively roll out a tight Africa network, set to rival the big Gulf carriers Emirates, Qatar Airways and Etihad, all of which too have focused in recent years on traffic from the African continent, connecting to the world through their respective hubs.
Turkish, a member of Star Alliance, has in recent years emerged from the shadows of the well near unnoticed large airlines and to the surprise of many now operates 185 aircraft and by the end of 2012 expects to have a fully operational fleet of 200 aircraft. The additional deliveries of in particular B737NG aircraft will allow Turkish to push African destinations up to 30 by the end of this year, with an expected further 10 coming on line over 2013. Africa is now the last frontier for economic development in the world and as the national economies grow there will be greater need for airtravel and air cargo. Turkish is getting ready to tap into that market by rolling out more destinations to countries which have the potential to make big contributions in terms of passengers and cargo the source said on condition of anonymity..
When asked to confirm the new destinations for Africa, this year and next year, the source however cited the need to keep such information secret for as long as possible to avoid competitors being tipped off too soon but be sure you read about the next countries in Africa THY will fly to right here, so watch this space.