Ethiopian Airlines Signed Interline Agreement with Airlink of South Africa and Resumed flight to Enugu, Nigeria
- With the interline agreements between the two carriers, passengers can book through their itineraries on both airlines easily.
- Ethiopian Airlines has resumed weekly passenger services to Enugu, Nigeria from 09 October 2021.
- A good aircraft maintenance hangar is a vital component of the Maintenance, Repair, and Overhaul (MRO) facility.
According to Air 101, Ethiopian Airlines has signed an interline agreement with the Johannesburg-based local carrier Airlink, which will allow passengers the option to enjoy seamless travel with a single ticket and lower fare tickets between points within the carriers’ synergized networks.
With the interline agreements between the two carriers, passengers can book through their itineraries on both airlines easily. The partnership attracts more customers providing ease of connectivity to their destinations served by both Ethiopian and Airlink.
Mr Tewolde Gebremariam, Group CEO, Ethiopian Airlines remarked, “In our continuous commitment and endeavour to expand our service beyond our extensive network in Africa, we are happy to enhance our cooperation and add Airlink to our list of growing partners in Africa.” he added, “As South Africa represents the continent’s largest market and with the significant changes in the region’s industry players, implementation of this interline agreement will create ease of access to those traveling to/from South African regional airports and Ethiopian destinations across five continents.”
Ethiopian Airlines has been implementing various partnership agreements with African and global carriers to further expand its accessibility to its customers. The partnership with Artlink, in particular, will increase seamless connectivity options for customers in the regions of South Africa with the vast network of Ethiopian Airlines in the continent and beyond. Ethiopian Airlines connectivity options are crucial in fulfilling the increasing demand of our customers. Ethiopian and Airlink customers will handle each other’s travelers’ check-in and baggage for all their flights with the airlines. Airlink provides services between smaller, under-served towns and larger hub airports. Hence, through the interline agreement signed with Ethiopian, customers from South Africa will benefit from more than 60 African destinations of Ethiopian.
Ethiopian Airlines is the fastest growing Airline in Africa. In its seventy-five years of operation, Ethiopian has become one of the continent’s leading carriers, unrivaled in efficiency and operational success. Ethiopian commands the lion’s share of the Pan-African passenger and cargo network operating the youngest and most modern fleet to more than 130 international passenger and cargo destinations across five continents. Ethiopian fleet includes ultra-modern and environmentally friendly aircraft such as Airbus A350, Boeing 787-8, Boeing 787-9, Boeing 777-300ER, Boeing 777-200LR, Boeing 777-200 Freighter, Bombardier Q-400 double cabin with an average fleet age of seven years. In fact, Ethiopia is the first airline in Africa to own and operate these aircraft.
The carrier is currently implementing a 15-year strategic plan called Vision 2025 that will see it become the leading aviation group in Africa with seven business units: Ethiopian International Services; Ethiopian Cargo & Logistics Services; Ethiopian MRO Services; Ethiopian Aviation Academy; Ethiopian ADD Hub Ground Services, Ethiopian Airports Services and Ethiopian Express Services (Domestic).
Ethiopian, the largest pan African airline, has resumed weekly passenger services to Enugu, Nigeria from 09 October 2021.
Daily Trust reports that the airline had planned to resume the operation which it suspended two years ago on October 1st to commemorate the Independence Day anniversary but it was shifted following the tension in the South East. The flights are operated on Wednesday, Friday and Saturday.
Ethiopian is one of the oldest carriers flying to Nigeria and has been serving the country since 1960, strengthening trade, cultural, and tourism ties between Nigeria and the rest of the world.
According to the airline, passengers from Enugu will have direct flight connections to many destinations in Africa, Middle East, Asia, South America, and Europe with the vast Ethiopian network and modern fleet and enjoy unique Ethiopian hospitality.
Group CEO of Ethiopian Airlines, Mr. Tewolde GebreMariam, assured that the airline would continue to improve on its service delivery to Nigeria.
He said, “Nigeria has always been and continues to be one of our important destinations in West Africa. We are continually improving our products and services to meet our customers’ expectations and the resumption of services to Enugu is key to reach our customers in different parts of Nigeria.
“We thank the people and the government of Nigeria for their continued support in restarting our service to Enugu.”
The airline stated that passengers from its four gateways in Nigeria – Lagos, Abuja, Kano, and Enugu – now have the opportunity to fly to more than 130 Ethiopian global destinations in five continents.
Ethiopian became the first international carrier to fly to Enugu when it commenced flight in 2013 before the service was suspended for two years as the airport was undergoing renovation.
Enhancing Aircraft Operations Through Maintenance Facilities
The biggest carrier on the continent and one of the largest in the world is playing the big brother role for the airline sub-sector in Africa.
According to the Independent, A good aircraft maintenance hangar is a vital component of the Maintenance, Repair, and Overhaul (MRO) facility. As the fortunes of many airlines around the world continue to dwindle in schedule operations and the International Air Transport Association (IATA) forecasted that the continent’s carriers would lose about $300m in 2019, many of the airlines before the due date commenced diversification of their operations away from the traditional flight operations to other critical areas of the industry.
One of such areas is the MRO facility, which has gone a long way in reducing costs and curbing capital flights out of the continent.
Several African airlines have turned to maintenance and repair as a new revenue stream and a means of lowering operation costs.
According to ICF International, a global consulting and technology services firm, African airlines’ spending on MRO is expected to hit $6 billion by 2025 due to the expected influx of new aircraft that require new and more sophisticated technical skills and capabilities.
Kenya Airways Technical, which covers maintenance for Boeing and Embraer aircraft, already offers third-party services with line and heavy maintenance.
About a year ago, Ethiopian Maintenance and Engineering Services, the largest aircraft maintenance center on the continent, repaired a GEnx engine, which powers the Boeing 787, after Rolls-Royce.
The Addis Ababa facility is the first MRO service provider in Africa with the capability to perform a modular level repair on the GEnx, the latest GE engine, which powers the most technologically advanced commercial aircraft, the Boeing 787.
The GEnx is the “workhorse engine of the 21st century” for medium and large-capacity, long-range aircraft, thanks to its tremendous improvements in efficiency and low cost of ownership, GE said.
Mr. Tewolde GebreMariam, Ethiopian Airlines Group Chief Executive Officer (GCEO), in a recent interview, said that the airline was making additional investments to enhance its capability to overhaul the GEnx engine before the end of 2019.
He declared that this newly developed capability would enable the airline to overhaul the GEnx engines of not just its Boeing 787 fleet, but also those of other airlines in the world.
Ethiopian Maintenance and Engineering Services perform airframe, engine, and component and line maintenance on the approval of the Ethiopian Civil Aviation Authority.