FlyNamibia looking to partner foreign carriers…Plans to link Hosea Kutako with Maun, Gaborone and Durban

Andre Compion, the CEO of FlyNamibia talks to Observer Money about the progress the airline is making on the market. He also talks about the process to join IATA and plans to fly to Maun, Gaborone and Durban.

CHAMWE KAIRA (CK): Describe the current business status of FlyNamibia, how is the company performing at the moment?

ANDRE COMPION (AC): FlyNamibia is currently performing well. Over the past year, we have dedicated significant efforts to obtain our IOSA certification, which will allow us to become an IATA member. This week, we are excited to be joining the Global Distribution System (GDS), enabling agents worldwide to book our tickets. Additionally, we are actively engaging in interline agreements with foreign carriers, enhancing seamless connectivity between incoming regional and international flights and our own regional and domestic flights. FlyNamibia is experiencing an exhilarating stage of growth and development.

CK: How has FlyNamibia expanded in recent years, what destinations do you fly to?

AC: FlyNamibia continuously evaluates new opportunities for growth. Currently, we operate flights to Mpacha Katima Mulilo, Rundu, Ondangwa, Lüderitz, Oranjemund, and Cape Town. We are in the final stages of launching new services from Hosea Kutako International Airport to Victoria Falls and Luanda, with plans to introduce a new service from Cape Town to Walvis Bay shortly. Moreover, we have successfully established our Safari Route, connecting Windhoek to Sossusvlei, Swakopmund, Damaraland, and Etosha, with further expansions on the horizon.

CK: What expansion plans do you have in terms of new destinations in and outside Namibia?

AC: Aside from the destinations mentioned earlier, pending the necessary statutory rights and approvals, we plan to link Hosea Kutako International Airport with Maun, Gaborone, and Durban in the foreseeable future.

CK: Recently, you introduced flights to Luderitz. How is oil exploration increasing demands for flights to Luderitz and Oranjemund?

AC: To support the ongoing Oil & Gas developments in Luderitz and Oranjemund, FlyNamibia has formed partnerships with Shell and Total Energies. We are thrilled and grateful for these developments, as they have created a significant increase in demand for daily flights to both locations. The availability of regular and reliable scheduled flights is anticipated to benefit both towns immensely.

CK: What more do you have to say about the domestic market?

AC: We operate these domestic routes, in addition to the Safari Route. It’s important to note that we have canceled the Eros-Walvis Bay service, and we will in future exclusively service Walvis Bay from Cape Town. Our service to Lüderitz is already in operation.

CK: May you describe the market demand at the moment given that FlyNamibia is the only commercial airline in Namibia at the moment?

AC: Namibia’s domestic routes have historically seen fluctuating demand. To cater to this demand, FlyNamibia carefully matches aircraft capacity with market requirements, providing the most economical options to travelers. Demand varies based on the day of the week and time of the month, and we strive to offer each route at affordable, yet financially sustainable fares. The decision to terminate the Eros-Walvis Bay service was influenced by the route’s inability to achieve a breakeven situation.

CK: Has FlyNamibia managed to fill the void left by Air Namibia on the domestic market?

AC: FlyNamibia has successfully expanded its services to cover more domestic destinations than any previous scheduled air service. We remain committed to responsibly and sustainably fulfilling the market’s needs, and our efforts to expand domestically will continue.

CK: Describe the current tourism market and how it is impacting your operations?

AC: Tourism in Namibia has almost reached pre-Covid levels, signaling a positive outlook for the industry. In response, FlyNamibia has developed the FlyNamibia Safari Route, offering scheduled services to popular destinations in Namibia at more affordable rates than chartered flights. We are actively collaborating with the tourism industry to develop innovative products, catering to high-end tourists and foresee exciting prospects for our services in the future.

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