European airliners, KLM and Lufthansa are both set to begin flight operations to Zanzibar, Tanzania, with both carriers set to have direct competition.
Lufthansa, meanwhile, will launch Frankfurt – Zanzibar on 31 March. Its twice-weekly offering by A330-300s will be via Mombasa – also new – in both directions.
KLM’s announcement builds on Cairo, Cork, and Southampton so far starting/restarting in 2020. These will be joined by Poznan from 25 October and Riyadh from 7 December. Austin is now expected to begin in 2021.
Lufthansa’s new Frankfurt – Mombasa – Zanzibar will be joined in S21 by 13 short-haul and similarly very outbound leisure services. This includes six new routes to Greece.
Lufthansa is focusing more than ever on the local German market, hardly surprising at the moment. Indeed, in 2020 it has started Gran Canaria, Rhodes, and Tenerife South from Frankfurt.
This was by up 148%, or 219,000, over 2015.
Neos was the largest European operator to the Tanzanian island, with 107,000 seats. The second was Turkish Airlines, which began Zanzibar in 2016; this airline accounts for most of the recent growth.
Last year we analysed Turkish Airlines and the MEB3’s total network distribution. Turkish Airlines had by far the most weekly frequencies to/from Africa.
Zanzibar was linked to 12 European airports in 2019, so pre-coronavirus.
Milan Malpensa was by far the top with three in ten seats.
Not surprisingly, Italy was the leading country for non-stop service to Zanzibar, with four Italian airports having just under half of all seats. Germany was third after Turkey.
Aside from non-stops, discussed above, sixth freedom operators were also key to Europe. In particular, Ethiopian Airlines, flydubai (and also with Emirates to Europe), Qatar Airways, and Turkish Airlines.
In the randomly chosen week beginning 16 December 2019, Ethiopian had a daily service using a hodgepodge of aircraft: A350-900s, B737-800s, B777-200LRs, and B787-8s and -9s. Its A350s were used most and they routed via Kilimanjaro in both directions.
We explored Ethiopian’s network in February.
flydubai, meanwhile, had a 14-weekly service. Of these, seven terminated in Zanzibar, while the other half continued to Dar Es Salaam and back via Zanzibar.
We looked at flydubai’s closer-than-ever relationship with Emirates earlier this year.
Across all carriers, the largest unserved European markets were Paris, London, Vienna, Munich, and Copenhagen, with Paris by far number-one.