from DANIEL JONES in Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe
VICTORIA FALLS, (CAJ News) – EUROWINGS Discover is upbeat at the opportunities offered by its upcoming service between Namibia and Zimbabwe, which will address the lack of flights between the two Southern African countries.
The Lufthansa Group-owned airline will early next year start flights between the Namibian capital city, Windhoek, and Zimbabwe tourism hub, Victoria Falls.
It will start with a thrice per week service from March 30.
Victoria Falls will be fifth destination in Africa for the airline after Mauritius, Kenya, Namibia, Tanzania and the archipelago of Zanzibar.
Eurowings Discover management on Thursday held a meeting with tourism industry stakeholders in Victoria Falls as part of a marketing campaign ahead of the service.
Andre Schultz, Eurowings Discover General Manager for Africa, said Victoria Falls was central to enhance a footprint in Africa.
“Our next project is Victoria Falls. We are happy that Eurowings Discovery will start flying via Windhoek on March 30. It will be a big day,” he said.
Schultz said the airline was optimistic and positive regarding the booking outlook.
“We are excited to have our airline touch down here in March next year. We are really happy to support with this airline the restart of Zimbabwe and Victoria Falls tourism industry actively with this flight.”
Schultz appealed to local stakeholders to play their part in marketing Victoria Falls.
He highlighted the need to increase confidence among travellers to the city and the entire Kavango Zambezi Transfrontier Conservation Area (KAZA).
KAZA, larger than Germany and Austria combined and nearly twice as large as the United Kingdom (UK), lies in the Kavango and Zambezi river basins where Angola, Botswana, Namibia, Zambia and Zimbabwe converge.
“Ours is to get people to travel, travel with Lufthansa and to Victoria Falls as we strengthen connectivity to the region and expand our footprint in Africa,” Schultz said.
Eurowings Discover has reported positive customer feedback since announcing intention to fly into Victoria Falls in May.
Plans are underway to rollout a massive marketing and education campaign ahead of the coming of the airline in Victoria Falls and Windhoek.
Jephreys Manjengwa, the Zimbabwe Tourism Authority Executive director for international marketing, said the coming in of the airline was a
boost to revive local tourism.
“This is a great stride and a big boost to our tourism recovery especially targeting our key source market in the world. We are very excited and we think other airlines are going to follow suit and increase connectivity,” Manjengwa said.
Tawanda Gusha, the Airports Company of Zimbabwe Chief Executive, said efforts were intensified to lure more airlines.
The Victoria Falls Airport was upgraded at a cost of US$150 million, enabling it to handle wide-bodied aircraft.
Zimbabwe aims to improve its air connectivity and improve tourism contribution to gross domestic product (GDP) according to the National Tourism Recovery and Growth Strategy (2020-2025).
– CAJ News