Time to free Mombasa & Kenya coast from the shackles of closed skies policy.

Iconic Mombasa elephant tusks were commissioned in commemoration of a visit to Mombasa by Queen Elizabeth in 1952

Air France just announced they have settled on Zanzibar for beach holiday seekers. If you wish to come to Mombasa you are pushed to fly through Nairobi which is totally unacceptable.

Potential visitors are not short of options be it from Goa to the Carribean , From Bali to Phuket From Dubai to Zanzibar we ain’t alone.

Mombasa cannot and should NOT continue to play second fiddle to Nairobi.

The days of protecting a national carrier is long gone . While Nairobi is purely corporate clients and safari seekers Mombasa is beach leisure travelers.

If our national carrier was serving say Paris Mombasa route I would defend them that we should NOT allow others to fly direct but they dont . Kenya is insisting you go through Nairobi and many leisure travellers just dont want to go through Nairobi.

South Africa protected a struggling South Africa Airways for decades by denying flying rights to other airlines who have always wanted to serve Cape Town and Durban directly. They finally did and leisure clients numbers to Cape Town went through the roof while Durban KZN attracting MICE segment big time reviving a destination that was dying.

When you allow say Air France or KLM direct flight to Mombasa it means firstly we get connected to many more cities across France and Netherlands then other cities globally. Allowing Turkish airlines into Mombasa means opening Germany to Kenya since Turkish airlines would fly to no less than 10 cities across Germany via Istanbul same thing with Ethiopian connecting Mombasa to 110+ cities globally.

You tell me when will KQ ever serve or reach all those cities? They have never flown to Germany let alone multiple cities.

While I have always fought and lobbied for Kenya Airways I am reaching a point where I feel that just maybe just maybe Mombasa could have done better if we never had Kenya Airways. I am getting a feeling that whoever is protecting KQ is being selfish and being short sighted. Kenya as a destination is far bigger and more important than Kenya Airways.

At the end of the day no one cares what they fly as long as they get to a destination in a safe convenient reliable affordable manner.

How can you claim you lost something you’ve never had ?

How can you claim you are losing yet you dont even serve a route in the first place . A Monsieur Francois and his better half are keen on a beach holiday and if they cant fly direct to Mombasa they will opt for Zanzibar. Does that help your coffers as a national carrier now that we have all lost ?

Surely why is it so hard to understand that?

There are many other areas that KQ can serve including cargo that they need to exploit and anyone placing hurdles to any airline wishing to fly to Mombasa is simply an enemy of Mombasa and Kenya coast I dare say that. We have over 40,000 rooms to fill along the entire Kenya coast from Shimoni to Manda.

That knee on our neck has been there for far too long ….give us room to breathe and allow us to receive international direct flight .

We ain’t asking for too much and if you only care to go back to Vision 2030 which is less than nine years to go direct flight is one of the enablers besides Kenya is a signatory to SATM Single Africa Air Transport Market and myriad open skies policies.

It’s no rocket science

Mohammed Hersi
Chairman
Kenya Tourism Federation

Published by Mohammed Hersi

Certified Governance Trainer by Centre For Corporate Governance Nairobi Kenya. Past President Rotary Club Of Mombasa. Past Chairman Kenya Tourism Federation. Passionate about matters Africa.

One thought on “Time to free Mombasa & Kenya coast from the shackles of closed skies policy.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: