Kenya eyes increased tourist flow from United States with launch of direct flights

New York firmly on radar as KQ opens ticket sales

Kenya eyes increased tourist flow from United States with launch of direct flights

An economy ticket to fly to NY direct aboard Kenya Airways starting October 28 will set you back Sh89,000.

The prices were released on Thursday when KQ launched the inaugural sale.

Those booking early will be able to get tickets for as low as $815 (Ksh.84,000) with returns return tickets set to retail from Ksh.106,000.

The airline will operate its state of the art Boeing 787 Dreamliner with a capacity of 234 passengers. The return flight will leave NY at 12:25 p.m. and arrive in Nairobi the next day at 10:55 a.m.

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The flight is scheduled to take 15 hours, a departure from the previous flight time of 22 hours including lengthy layovers passengers from JKIA had to cope with using connecting flights.

Economy fliers on Qatar Airways will pay Sh93,000 from Nairobi to NY but they will stop at Doha for two and a half hours and the trip will take 22 hours and 30 minutes long.

"The ultra-long-haul flight, unique to Kenya Airways network, will require 4 Pilots and 12 Flight attendants as well as 85 tons of fuel each way, making it an exceptional operation".

He said: "Winning these awards would not have been possible without the passion and dedication of the Kenya Airways team and the strong support from our guests". It is the largest tourist source market, and in the period to October 2017 accounted for close to 100 000 tourists to Kenya.

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"This marks a 20 per cent increase in traffic every year for the past two years", he said.

Devan Jobanputra, director of Travel 'n Style in Kenya, says the direct flight will undoubtedly increase awareness and is likely to boost premium travel to the country.

"This is an exciting moment for us".

Najib Balala, Kenya's secretary of tourism, said the flight will position Kenya as the gateway to Sub-Saharan Africa for leisure and business travel. "We are honored to contribute to the economic growth of Kenya and East Africa".

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"All airport staff will undergo customer care training at Utalii College, a seven-day crash programme to ensure we improve service delivery".

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