Shamiso Dzingire, Business Reporter
LOW-COST airline Fastjet says it would launch daily flights between Bulawayo and Harare with the first flight scheduled for Friday, 20 July.
Chief executive officer, Mr Nico Bezuidenhout, confirmed the development in a statement yesterday. He said a special launch fare has been pegged at $59 including tax, and tickets are already on sale at the company’s website, fastjet shops and travel agents.
“Fastjet has been pursuing this route designation for several years. We are delighted to see that positive changes in the Zimbabwean environment made this development possible, enabling low-fare connectivity between more domestic destinations,” said Mr Bezuidenhout.
The airline, which celebrates its third year of operation in Zimbabwe, will be the first low-cost player to operate the Harare-Bulawayo route. Mr Bezuidenhout said while they would be launching with a single frequency, Fastjet intends to grow the route after consulting further with stakeholders and introducing additional aircraft to facilitate growth.
He believes that Fastjet’s entry into this market will stimulate economic activity and growth since Bulawayo is a strategic economic hub that services nearby mining, industrial and agricultural activity. With the addition of the Harare-Bulawayo route, Fastjet’s network in Zimbabwe now totals four destinations with more than 100 weekly flights. The airline already plies the Harare-Johannesburg route four times daily, Harare-Victoria Falls twice daily and flies between Victoria Falls and Johannesburg up to three times a week.
Mr Bezuidenhout said the affordable fares, multiple daily frequencies and commitment to promoting local and inbound tourism and on-time performance was meant to make fastjet the preferred airline.
“We look forward to continued engagement with all stakeholders in Zimbabwe to realise additional frequencies on the route as well as the development of new destinations,” he said. — @ShamisoDzingire.