Monday, July 29, 2013

► ZIMBABWE: Lufthansa not coming back to Harare any time soon: Dünhaupt

German carrier, Lufthansa (LH), will not be returning to the Zimbabwean capital, Harare, any time soon,  group communications director for Africa, Mr Aage Dünhaupt, has said, but would instead continue to maintain a presence in the market via a codeshare with its Star Alliance partner South African Airways' (SA) multiple daily Johannesburg - Harare flights.

Harare International Airport
Following the collapse of the Zimbabwean economy in 2000, Lufthansa joined various other international carriers, among them Swissair (SR), Air France (AF), TAP Air Portugal (TP), Qantas (QF), Austrian Airlines (OS) and British Airways (BA) (as opposed to the BA-Comair franchise which still operates into the country), in deserting the country.

Lufthansa last served Harare in tandem with Windhoek, Namibia in the early 2000s.

Mr Dünhaupt, is an interview with NewsDay, negated this saying:
“If at one point a larger passenger volume might be available it could become an option to fly directly, but this is not foreseen right now,” Dünhaupt said. “Concerning Harare, we can say that our Star Alliance partner South African Airways is serving the route between Johannesburg and Harare and as part of a code-share deal also offers a Lufthansa flight number. This way we can ensure that Harare is part of our network even if it is not served directly by a Lufthansa-branded airplane. Other large European airlines, like Air France and British Airways, do the same to service the trunk routes via Nairobi and Johannesburg, respectively.
So far, the only international carriers to have returned to Harare are KLM (KL) and Egyptair (MS) with many operators still reticent about the country's unstable political and economic future coupled with its poor international image.