Archive for July, 2017

Corporate Council on Africa News Updates

TOURISM

Here’s How South Africa’s Tourism Sector Is Booming Despite Recession Ventures Africa
“We believe that the tourism sector, which is not rand hedged, has the potential to pull us out of recession and to save and grow jobs,” Winde said…. Read more>>

Q&A: UNWTO secretary-general on exploring Africa’s sustainable tourism opportunities Devex
As African leaders look for ways to diversify their economies, tourism has emerged as a way to create new jobs, attract foreign visitors and attract investments to build more integrated societies…… Read more>>

News from Kafunta Safaris in Zambia

News updates from Zambia’s Kafunta Safaris

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Kafunta Safaris
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Dear ATC Readers,

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July is already behind us, which means we are well into the second half of our 2017 season, it’s amazing how quickly it is all going.

Anke, Ron & Luke were here for a couple of weeks, while Luke was on school break. He has now only one semester to go and he will be finished with his secondary school level.

The Cowans brought with them some friends from Australia as well as Anke’s parents from Germany. Lots of fun for all!

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Anke & Jane
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Anke and her parents
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Luke and the Luangwa River
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Family & friends on a walk
Three Rivers Camp
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As the novelty this year, Three Rivers Camp has been very busy, with new and return guests, travel agents and even fellow local safari operators such as Emma Robinson (Lion Camp) who came for a short visit, and great snapshots.
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Three Rivers is the perfect camp to relax and absorb the surroundings. Stay in for sunset, which is really stunning there over the Luangwa River, and sleep in a bit later, especially out on the sleep out, to enjoy the sun rise. It makes for a nice change from the busy routine of safari.
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Island Bush Camp
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Island Bush Camp remains a favorite for our guests, who enjoy the simplicity of the layout, and the genuine companionship of our camp manager Eugene and our dedicated staff.
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Eugene in one of the chalets
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and on the kitchen radio
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Chintu, the bush master Chef!
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Dining area
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Bush kitchen
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One of the chalets
Kudos to Beard!
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Bush camps mean remote areas, and to get there we need roads. As we are the sole operator in that part of the National park, we have to rely on our own grading in order to provide smooth transfers and game drive loops. This is all done by our grader driver, Beard. It’s really hard work, sitting in the sun all day on that heavy machine, and Beard has been doing this since May! Big kudos and thank you to him.
Be our guests! Walter & Barbara Hörmann

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Walter & Barbara visited us from Austria this past July for a total of 7 nights, combining all three properties. In their luggage (or I should say in the many shipping boxes) they also brought a LOT of supplies, both for the Mfuwe Junior Soccer League as well as for Project Luangwa.

For our football fans out there, Walter was a pro football player with selections in the Austrian national team. After his active career, he went on to coach national teams of Austria, Switzerland and Liechtenstein. Now he is a Sport Director in the Austrian sport department, lookout out for young talents. His support for our local football stars will go a long way (see below)!

Walter & Barbara were the perfect match for our "guests of the month" feature, and I hope that you will feel the emotion and energy coming from them while reading their interview.

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Was this your first trip to Africa?
I (Barbara) was in Africa before: Botswana, Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe, Namibia,.. but the best, Luangwa, I wanted to do together with Walter for whom it is the first time in Africa. He did not have much time to travel in his active career as player or trainer since soccer is played almost all around the year- just two weeks off.

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Why did you choose South Luangwa & Kafunta?

We wanted to get a glimpse of the real untouched africa , nature and animals, to get some quality time out and a real relaxation. I saw BBC blue planet, national geographic films and in Austria the documentary "Universum" and from time to time there were some reports and movies from / about Luangwa Valley.It was fascinating! Being here and seeing it all live we can honestly say that it is even better, much much better, than the best documentary on Tv!

We chose Kafunta because the first email contact (with Izzy) was great. Very fast , professional, friendly with a personal touch. She planted a seed in my dreams. Then i checked photos on the web, guest reviews, homepage,..everything was perfect. Final decision was the eco friendly philosophy and the supporting of project luangwa and the young boys in the soccer league which gave my husband the kick to choose exactly this lodge-Kafunta.

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You experienced our three properties. What did you enjoy about each one?

All three lodges are really great and are different !

We are happy that we have been to all three and if we come again we will do all three again. Kafunta is luxury, best to start and end the safari, many animals , wonderful team, great healthy food, hot spring and pool are superb and so is watching of the animals near the magic Luangwa,.. postcard-sunsets,… time passes too fast here and we have to come back to enjoy the different places like the wildlife hide, the tree deck, the gym and the spa.

Island Bush camp has a super nice team, really -Eugene and his team are just great!!! Perfect sunsets, time to sit near the fire, listen to the hippos day and night, very good food (as in all the 3 lodges). We felt very comfortable and a bit like Robinson Crusoe (or should i say David Livingstone) if you know what i mean : basic adventurous romantic luxury !

The walking safari is a highlight and adrenaline.

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Three river lodge is for us a piece of art!!! Such great design of a "tent"!!! The incredible luxury of having an indoor and outdoor shower, an indoor sleeping room as well as the possibility to sleep under the stars!!! Watching the stars and the milky way lying in a super comfortable bed even with a hot water bottle near the toes and listening to the roaring of the lion.

We will never forget these moments. There, we took time out from safaris and enjoyed the great architecture of our tented house!!! Incredible sunset at the riverbank!!! Less animals? No problem -this gives time to relax , read and enjoy the quietness and pureness!!! For a change we were not active – we sat still and the animals passed our house.

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Which animals did you enjoy most?

We both enjoyed the hippos the most!!! They made us happy from the moment we woke up until when we went to sleep and also during our dreams. They were with us in all of the three lodges.

But of course we were also super impressed by lions and leopards, their elegance and royalty. It would not be a satisfying safari if we don’t see them, but Luangwa is satisfying and offers a PERFECT safari.

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Was there anything that made you nervous in the African bush?

We never felt nervous at all. We had enough confidence and 100% trust in our super professional guides!!!
Walter had a bit of anxiety towards the animals before we left for Africa, not having experienced anything like it before, but all the fear was blown away as soon we arrived. Francis, a lovely gentleman, picked us up from the airport (our first contact with Kafunta staff), he did a super good job by giving us the first introduction about Mfuwe area, its people and scenery.

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Thank you for bringing so much supplies/donations to the Mfuwe football league and also Project Luangwa! Tell us how this idea came to send sport supplies and why you wanted to support Mfuwe.

When we read that Kafunta was involved in soccer league and supporting project luangwa – this was the final click why we chose Kafunta. We felt connected with the Kafunta team by the same philosophy and spirit. We cannot change the whole world but we can do our part (for a better world) The children are our future . So we told ourselves if we go there we won’t come with empty hands. With Wilson, we found the perfect man concerning the soccer and Mfuwe football league. And so is Karen for Project Luangwa . I read and searched about it on the internet and I had a really good feeling. We can never do a charity successfully, if there is not someone on the other side we can trust!

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Everything was perfect, everything arrived, everybody was happy and every cent from the charity reached its final destination!!!

Walter, he loves to see kids playing soccer, it makes him happy to look into their faces and see them smiling. It makes him happy if he shares his love for soccer!! We talk a lot about the afternoon we spent at the school’s football field.

Walter and Wilson were a perfect match, talking about soccer and watching the boys playing barefoot, on normal ground, no goal-net or lines, no fighting or arguing – just fair play and with full enthusiasm! It reminded Walter of his childhood , everything he wanted to do was playing soccer, nothing could stop him and he did it. All his life he played soccer or was trainer or sports director – until now.

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Walter & I also want thank the STEIR FUßBALLVERBAND , to STURM GRAZ , to SPAR and to all the customers from ETHNOTHEK SCHMUCK who gave donations!!! Without them it would not have been possible!

So now- we feel very attached to the Mfuwe-team, to the Allstars (Malambo United) , to the juniors and to the school kids and we have to come back!!!

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Anything else you would like to share?

I recommend everybody to do a charity or donation how small or big it is , it doesn’t matter! You will look into happy eyes and you will never forget this moment!!!

This makes it to a win-win situation!!! The holiday is no longer just a holiday, it has got a certain bond and spirit, and so is Kafunta: it is the lodge with spirit on the riverbanks of the magic Luangwa, a bridge for tourists, locals and animals to meet

I dreamed about this place and it became reality,
a paradise on earth,
where human meets animals – in harmony and peace-
where nature is in balance and time stands still!!!

From all of us at Kafunta Safaris, Mfuwe Junior Football League and Project Luangwa – it is our turn to say thank you to Barbara and Walter. Living and working in the valley is not always easy, but guests like YOU make all the difference and give value to our work.
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Just a side note on the Junior football league. There are currently 3 leagues covering the entire Luangwa Valley, from Kakumbi to Nsefu. 10 teams in Under 12-boys and 10 teams in Under 15-boys as well as 10 teams in Under 15-girls. The kids compete amongst themselves, and the best talents are selected to be part of the ALL STARS – Malambo United team, itself part of the Luangwa Safari League. This particular team plays in the larger province and in Lusaka, and the players are exposed to national and international games.

More recently Emmanuel Mphasi was selected to be a goal-keeper for the Under-17 Zambian National Team (Junior Chipolopolos)!!

You can imagine the future of boys like Emmanuel, going from playing barefoot on a dirt field in rural areas, to the stadiums of foreign countries, wearing the colours of their country.

Walter Hörmann (and the Austrian sport department) brought full competition uniforms, with the Malambo United logo for the entire team. Along with 30 training outfits, shoes and professional soccer balls like the kids have never seen before.

In the Spotlight – Stephan Tüngler

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My apologies if you found this a bit long but I thought it was well worth the share!

Now onto more wildlife excitements with these few pictures from professional photographer Stephan Tüngler who visits us every year, along with the participants of his photographic workshop.

Stephan is taking bookings for next year already (June 2018), you can check his program here: In Afrika

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From the Sky!

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Before letting you go back to your busy day, I also wanted to say thank you to Mario Oltmann, who was a volunteer with us for the past month. Mario studies agriculture in Germany and was busy in the vegetable garden these past weeks. He was also a great help in general maintenance and workshop.

In his "toolbox", he had also brought a sophisticated drone and got us some excellent video footage of our camps seen from the sky. Below are just a few stills for you to enjoy, while we finish working on the video material.

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Three Rivers Camp & the Luangwa River
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Island Bush Camp
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Kafunta River Lodge
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Three Rivers camp & the Chindeni Hills in the background
Chat again in August!

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I’m saving lots more for next month, I love this time of year when I have so much to cover that I’m running out of space!

And I know August will be busy too, so stay tuned for more.

Of course don’t forget to send me your favorite shots, they will find their place in one of our newsletters, or on social media.

Thank you !

Izzy

Kafunta Safaris

Kafunta Safaris, Box 83, Mfuwe, Zambia

Marriott introduces new Sales and Marketing Team for Africa

NEW TEAM FOR MARRIOTT TO MARKET AFRICAN PROPERTIES

(Posted 31st July 2017)

Marriott International (www.Marriott.com) earlier today announced the expansion and strengthening of its Sales and Marketing Leadership Team for the Middle East and Africa. This new initiative comes on the heels of the successful mega merger between Marriott International and Starwood Hotels and Resorts and the fast progressing integration of the two companies. The revamped Brand, Marketing, Sales and Consumer Services (BMSC) Leadership Team comprises of highly experienced professionals from Marriott International and legacy Starwood Hotels and Resorts, bringing together exceptional talent and expertise from both companies and speaks to the company’s commitment to support its enhanced footprint and aggressive growth plans in the region.

Led by Marriott International veteran, Neal Jones, Chief Sales and Marketing Officer, Middle East and Africa, Marriott International, the team will provide dedicated support to the company’s thriving regional portfolio and will be responsible for driving top line revenue for Marriott International brands, ensuring the regional Sales and Marketing strategy is aligned with the company’s vision and priorities.

With a current portfolio of over 240 hotels with 54,000 rooms in 30 countries, Marriott International is working towards targeting a projected growth of 150,000 rooms operational and pipeline in 38 countries by 2022 across Middle East and Africa.

The leading hotel operator is targeting a projected growth of 150,000 rooms operational and pipeline in 38 countries by 2022 across Middle East and Africa

Commenting on the announcement, Neal Jones said ‘The leadership changes we are announcing today are important to foster greater synergies, teamwork, accountability and nimble decision-making critical to lay a strong foundation that will support our ambitious growth plans in the region. I am extremely excited to work together with such a talented and diverse group of leaders who bring with them exceptional domain expertise as well as regional insights that will enable us to create a more vibrant organization that delivers value for all stakeholders. I am confident that with this, we have the right structure and talent in place to accelerate our lead in the market, drive further innovation and strengthen the positioning of our brands while keeping our loyal and new guests at the centre of everything we do, steering us into the next phase of our growth and success’.

Marriott’s BMSC leadership team for Middle East and Africa has been formed with the following seasoned hospitality professionals currently on board and a Vice President Luxury Brands soon to be announced.

Paul Dalgleish, Vice President of Sales & Distribution will be responsible for Property, Market and Area Sales Organisations as well as the Global Sales Organisation, whilst leading the Middle East and Africa Distribution Strategy. Previously Vice President of Sales for Marriott International, Paul has played a key role in the rapid expansion of the Middle East and Africa Region, deploying new and innovative sales strategies, whilst ensuring talent development lives as a discipline priority.

Sarah Allen, Vice President of Revenue Strategy & Analysis will be responsible for Property, Market and Area Revenue Management, Remote Revenue Management Solutions and Revenue Management Analysis. Formerly Vice President of Revenue Management, Marriott International Middle East and Africa, Sarah is a Marriott International veteran and has played a key role in moving hotels onto Marriott’s Revenue Management platforms implementing processes as well as setting up shared services across the markets to drive synergies. She was also the business leader for the integration of Protea Hotels which was acquired by Marriott International in 2014.

Jitendra Jain, Vice President of Digital, Loyalty and Portfolio Marketing will be responsible for the company’s award-winning Loyalty Programs, Partnerships, cross-brand marketing of Marriott International’s regional portfolio and will lead all Digital Marketing, Platforms and Products. A Starwood veteran, Jitendra previously led the Marketing function for the former Starwood portfolio in the Middle East, where he spearheaded the transformation of marketing processes, talent and culture, cultivating a data-driven and forward-looking mindset leveraging digital, brands and loyalty.

Sandra Schulze-Potgieter, Vice President of Premium and Select Brands will be responsible for Brand Marketing and Management for Marriott International’s compelling portfolio of Premium and Select Brands and will oversee Restaurants & Bars Marketing as well as Area Field Marketing. Sandra was previously Senior Director, Brand Marketing & eCommerce for Marriott International Middle East and Africa managing Field Marketing, Brand Marketing, Public Relations, Partnerships, Social Media, Digital as well as Loyalty. She was instrumental in positioning Marriott International’s lead in Brand Marketing in the region.

Sarah Walker Kerr, Vice President of Communications Middle East and Africa will be responsible for devising and implementing the overall Communications Strategy for Marriott International in the region, driving visibility, enhancing the perception of the company and its brands and increasing its share of voice in the media. She will provide strategic counsel to the senior executive leadership team, managing Internal and External Communications, Crisis Communications and Reputation Management as well as Brand Communications. A seasoned communications specialist, Sarah was previously Regional Director of Public Relations Middle East, Africa, India & Japan for The Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company.

Raheel Baggia, Senior Director, BMSC Planning and Services will be responsible for Integration and Change Management, Program Execution and Training. Prior to this Raheel served as Director, BMSC Consulting-Middle East and Africa. Since joining Marriott in 2013, Raheel has been working on strategic continent projects both in his previous role supporting BMSC-Middle East and Africa as well as in Europe where he was part of the Global Operations team.

Marriott International, Inc. is based in Bethesda, Maryland, USA, and encompasses a portfolio of more than 6,100 properties across 30 leading hotel brands spanning 124 countries and territories. Marriott operates and franchises hotels and licenses vacation ownership resorts all around the world. The company also operates award-winning loyalty programs: Marriott Rewards®, which includes The Ritz-Carlton Rewards®, and Starwood Preferred Guest®.
For more information, please visit their website at www.Marriott.com, and for the latest company news, visit www.MarriottNewscenter.com.
In addition, connect with them on Facebook (https://www.Facebook.com/marriottinternational), follow @MarriottIntl on Twitter (https://Twitter.com/MarriottIntl) and Instagram (https://www.Instagram.com/marriottintl).

Atta – African Travel and Tourism Association – News Summary

African Travel and Tourism Association News Updates …
Signed up to become a member yet?

Weekly members news summary from Atta – The African Travel and Tourism Association
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Dear ATC Readers,

Please find below this week’s summary of the Atta members news featuring news from across the African continent and beyond.

Atta Members Weekly News Summary
31 July 2017

A Hidden Gem – Kakiya Cave
The Bushtops Camp Collection
We’re used to surprises in the Bush, but sometimes we get left open-mouthed. Read More

The good news for rhinos
Africa Geographic
Focusing on the good work being done to protect our rhinos. Read More


Nicola Colangelo
Coastal Aviation
We regret to inform you that our beloved founder Nicola Colangelo died in Fiumaretta, Italy, on the 24th July at the age of 73. Read More


Ethiopian to Start Services to Bahrain
Ethiopian Airlines
Africa’s largest airline group, Ethiopian Airlines, is pleased to announce that it will start services to Bahrain effective August 17, 2017 with the latest B737-800 New Generation with Sky Interior. Read More


Wilderness Safaris Launches Wilderness Moments Photographic Competition
Wilderness Safaris
Wilderness Safaris is thrilled to launch the Wilderness Moments Photographic Competition, to encourage all guests, staff and partners who have travelled with the company in the last 34 years to “Take their best shot at a purposeful journey”. Read More


Nomad Tanzania’s new look Kuro Tarangire
Nomad Tanzania
Nomad Tanzania is delighted to share the first images of our new look Kuro Tarangire. Read More


Ghana Hotels first to launch Handy Travellers phone

More ATQ News from Nigeria and beyond

ATQnews.com a member of Travel Media Group. This is the online platform for African Travel Quarterly (ATQ), the first Travel magazine in West Africa which solely focuses on travel and tourism issues. It started publishing offline about 10 years ago. ATQnews.com features reports that cover a wide range of topics within the travel

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Ghana hotels first to launch Handy Travellers phone in Africa

Tink Labs Limited, one of Hong Kong’s most successful start-ups that revolutionizes travel and tourism on Wednesday, July 26, launched its Handy Smartphone and announced its partnership with Ghanaian hotels to offer mobile travel solution to visitors.

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The device helps travellers meet their unlimited demand for internet connection services in and outside the hotel room and at the same time serves as a tailored travel guide for tourists and integrating with hotel services.

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Rwanda increased Gorrila tracking fees to improve conservation efforts- Belise Kariza

Rwanda continues to position itself as high-end eco-tourism destination for visitors, says Belise Kariza, predicting a 10

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Seychelles Tourism Board praises Ethiopian Airlines for creating a viable niche for growth

The Seychelles Tourism Board (STB) has expressed the desire the see further growth of its relationship with Ethiopian…

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Tourism has not boosted the economies of the Caribbean contrary to expectations

When President Trump announced last month that he would re-impose strict limitations on Americans’…

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Gulf Carriers having bad times as Emirates suffer loss, Etihad lose

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Chairman Kenya Tourism Federation becomes Group CEO

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Air Seychelles announces Duesseldorf suspension after recent Durban pullout

AIR SEYCHELLES ANNOUNCES REDUCTION OF FLIGHTS TO PARIS AND PULL OUT FROM DUSSELDORF

(Posted 31st July 2017)

Air Seychelles’ decision to reduce their nonstop flights between Mahe and Paris from the present four services per week to three already from September while Duesseldorf flights will be axed altogether has thrown a spanner in the works of many tourism stakeholders banking on an increased flow of tourists from these two destinations.
Said Neil Kinnear, the CEO of Air Seychelles, when making the announcement about dropping Dusseldorf, just months after launching the route and following a similar development for the airline’s Durban flights: ‘We have made the difficult decision to suspend flying to Düsseldorf after an in-depth review of the route showed that the service is unsustainable.
Given the high number of airlines operating or offering connectivity out of Germany, the seasonal nature of the route where peak travel periods are outweighed by low demand during the off-peak season, the extremely competitive levels of fares and existing fuel prices, it is not viable for us to continue serving the market at this point in time. In addition, the volume of connecting traffic from our partner airlines over Düsseldorf has not lived up to expectations, making it harder to sustain the necessary passenger loads to meet our commercial objectives. Germany is an important tourism market for Seychelles and we will continue to work with our codeshare partners to offer excellent one-stop connections via Paris with Air France and via Abu Dhabi with Etihad Airways
‘.

Kinnear then continued to explain the rationale behind the reduction of nonstop Paris flights when he added: ‘As a result of the weakened demand for air travel out of France, we have also taken the commercial decision to reduce our Paris service from four to three flights per week. While passenger numbers are strong during the summer months of July and August, the declining demand as we enter the off-peak season in September does not provide the required level of support for our fourth frequency going forward, which operates mid-week on Tuesdays/Wednesdays. The route will continue to be operated with a two-class Airbus A330-200 aircraft, with flights operating on Wednesdays, Fridays and Sundays out of Seychelles and on Mondays, Thursdays and Saturdays out of Paris‘.

Jean Weeling – Lee, Chairman of Air Seychelles, then added his own voice when he said: ‘Due to year on year increase of cost of fuel, an extremely competitive aviation market in Europe, and the high number of significant airlines already serving Seychelles though their connecting hubs, it unfortunately results in Air Seychelles being forced to consolidate these services‘.

Any passengers already booked beyond the dates given will be rebooked or refunded. Said the airline’s website:

· Guests holding tickets on Dusseldorf flights after 8 September, 2017 are invited to visit Air Seychelles websitecallcenter or contact their Travel Agent.

· Guests holding tickets on Paris flights departing from Seychelles on Tuesdays and from Paris on Wednesdays after 6 September, 2017 are invited to visit Air Seychelles website contactcenter or contact their Travel Agent.

Tour D’ EAC teams arrive in Kampala

TOUR D’ EAC START IMMINENT AS TEAMS SET UP CAMP IN KAMPALA

(Posted 31st July 2017)

The grand flag off of the 2nd East African Bicycle Tour known as ‘Tour D’ EAC‘ 2017 is due to take place tomorrow at the Independence Monument, Kampala Uganda. Located below the Sheraton Hotel gardens, opposite the Grand Imperial Hotel will the ceremony take place on Tuesday 01st of August at 08:00 hrs. If you have a bicycle, please come and ride with the team any.distance of your convenience.Meanwhile have the Kenyan, Rwandan and Burundian teams arrived in Kampala and set up camp before embarking on a journey across the entire region covering several thousand kilometres. The teams can be met along Entebbe road at Hotel Malakai in Kitende. In particular local media but also cycling enthusiasts are welcome ahead of the start tomorrow.
It was learned that all ‘official‘ engagements in Kenya have been cancelled due to the imminent elections, an unexpected turn as the bicycle tour is after all aiming to foster regional and national unity among EAC member states.
The route through Kenya will therefore be fast tracked according to the organizers and slightly more time then be spend in Tanzania instead before driving through Burundi and Rwanda ahead of the return to the finishing line in the Ugandan capital.

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