Published: Sun, January 14, 2018
Markets | By Erika Turner

U.S. in 15 hours: KQ's maiden NY flight to cost Sh89,000

U.S. in 15 hours: KQ's maiden NY flight to cost Sh89,000

The return flight will depart at 12:25 p.m. and arrive back in Kenya at 10:55 a.m. the day after.

The direct flight from Kenya's Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA) to the United States is set to create over 150 jobs at the airport.

"We are honoured to contribute to the economic growth of Kenya and East Africa", said Sebastian adding the route would increase the carrier's revenue by 10 per cent. KQ's entry into the United States comes at a time when the airline is implementing a turnaround strategy, with restructuring of its balance sheet aimed at keeping it flying. "It fits within our strategy to attract corporate and high-end traffic from the world to Kenya and Africa".

Speaking while making the announcement in Thursday, Kenya Airways chief executive officer Sebastian Mikosz said the airline will be targeting business and leisure travelers.

"The move will cut the flight time between the two cities by more than seven hours", he said, noting it will take 15 hours eastbound and 14 hours westbound.

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Kenya Airways already serves Africa, Europe, Middle-East, Indian sub-continent and Asia. From New-York it will depart at 1225 and land at JKIA at 1055 the following day.

He said the flights will see Kenya Airways employ more pilots and more crew to facilitate the functionality of the new flight route launched. As the offers connections to over 40 African destinations, those destinations now have the luxury of proximity to a transatlantic network.

The airline was in September granted approval to operate flights in the US by the department of transportation while JKIA was earlier in 2017 granted a Category One status by the US Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) after the airport upgraded its security features. Ethiopian Airways even operates a flight from Addis Ababa, Ethiopia to Los Angeles, but that flight connects in Dublin.

Flight time between Nairobi and NY will be reduced from over 22 hours to 15 hours.

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