Ethiopian Airlines, the national carrier of Ethiopia is all set to increase the flight frequency to Mumbai to double daily effective March 29, 2015. The carrier will be flying Boeing 787 Dreamliner between Mumbai and Addis Ababa.
Speaking about the new development, Tadesse Tilahun, regional director- India Sub Continent, Ethiopian Airlines said, “We are extending our codeshare with Air India by increasing the frequency to double daily between our hub Addis Ababa and Mumbai. One will be a night flight whereas the other will be an early morning one from Mumbai. We also have plans to increase our frequency to New Delhi, which is still under process. Air India has been our strategic partner for a while now, we plan to expand our codeshare and add more destinations in Africa in the next phase.”
The traffic between Mumbai and Addis Ababa has witnessed a growth rate of 10 per cent in 2014 as compared to 2013 and in the New Delhi sector the airlines has marked a 11 per cent growth. The carrier on an average uplifts 212 passengers from Mumbai and 92.5 from New Delhi on a daily basis. With this new development the airlines is also planning to start operations to additional destinations in southern India.
Mukesh Bhatia, general manager- commercial, Western Region, Air India said, “We are extremely glad to know about the double daily flights to Mumbai. We have observed an increase in the usage of codeshare in the last two to three years. In the next phase of the codeshare Air India will be adding five new destinations which will be finalised soon. We have witnessed an increase of 40 per cent in the revenue between Air India and Ethiopian Airlines, with the addition of more destinations on both sides we expect a very positive growth in our business.”
Speaking on the effect of oil price fluctuation, Tilahun added, “The fuel prices has significantly dropped recently, but in the actual purchase price we have not seen any difference. We have signed an agreement with Indian Oil for the same with a price hike which restricts us from decreasing the fuel surcharge. Fuel prices constitutes around 45 per cent of our operational cost.”
With the announcement of the double daily flight to Mumbai, the airline has also introduced an exclusive offer. Ethiopian will be offering a ticket free on purchase of one ticket or a discount of 40 per cent on a single ticket. The sale of these tickets will be between March 5 – 15, 2015 and valid for travel from March 29 onwards. The offer is valid on routes from Mumbai to and from Entebbe, Nairobi, Khartoum, Juba, Djibouti, Hargeisa.