African travel news
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It’s been a busy time in the travel industry in Africa this past month. So, grab a cup of tea, sit back, relax, and read your African Travel News for this month…

Have you heard that Amadeus achieved IATA Level 3 NDC certification as an aggregator and that the best Ethiopian Airlines fares are now available on your favourite GDS? Did you know that we can expect a new Nigerian national airline by December? And that liquids bans could forever be a thing of the past?

From new routes to travel industry news and new airlines, we’ve rounded up the most exciting Africa Travel News for July 2018…

Amadeus achieves IATA Level 3 NDC certification as an aggregator

Level 3 NDC

Amadeus has received the level 3 New Distribution Capability (NDC) certification as an aggregator from International Air Transport Association (IATA).

This comes in addition to Amadeus’ existing level 3 NDC certification as an IT provider, making Amadeus one of the first providers with dual level 3 certification.

Level 3 is the highest NDC certification and is awarded to companies that can demonstrate the ability to execute Offer and Order Management. This means that Amadeus is able to consume NDC offers from airlines and distribute them to travel sellers.

Read more here.

Book the best Ethiopian Airlines fares on Amadeus

Did you hear the news? Ethiopian Airlines has significantly extended its partnership with Amadeus.

For you, the travel agent, this means you now have access to the airline’s best available fares for indirect channels via Amadeus, allowing you to create the most competitive travel packages for your travellers.

You can count on having access to the broadest range of the airline’s content and services from the comfort of Amadeus Selling Platform Connect.

Read more here.

Air France to increase Nairobi flights in 2019

Air France is set to increase flights from Paris to Nairobi’s Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA) from three to five times a week next year to tap increased business and tourism travel between the two countries.

The French national airline is ramping up its Kenya frequencies barely four months after it formally joined the Kenya Airways and KLM joint venture and launched direct flights between Nairobi and Paris after an 18-year hiatus.

The airline will operate the route using a Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner aircraft that has a 276-passenger capacity with 30 seats in business class, 21 in premium economy and 225 in economy class.

Nigeria reveals livery and name of new national carrier

 The Federal Government of Nigeria has revealed the branding and livery for a new national Flag Carrier Nigeria Air at the Farnborough International Airshow in the UK last month.

Minister of State for Aviation, Senator Hadi Sirika told delegates: “I am very pleased to tell you that we are finally on track to launching a new national flag carrier for our country: Nigeria Air. We are all fully committed to fulfilling the campaign promise made by our President, Muhammadu Buhari in 2015. We are aiming to launch Nigeria Air by the end of this year.”

Senator Sirika said the Certificate of Compliance was obtained from the Nigerian Infrastructure Concession Regulatory Commission (ICRC). “I am confident that we will have a well-run national flag carrier, a global player, compliant to international safety standards, one which has the customer at its heart. An airline that communicates the essence of our beautiful country, an airline we can all be proud of,” he said.

Kenya Airways, Air Madagascar and Air Austral ink partnership deal

Air Austral and Air Madagascar have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Kenya Airways in Antananarivo, Madagascar. By signing the MoU, the three companies lay the foundations for a new partnership and have the ambition to boost their footprints in Africa and the Indian Ocean Island.

Through the privileged partnership, the three airlines commit to develop codeshare agreements and increase the connectivity options and offer a wider choice of services to customers. The three hubs of Nairobi, Antananarivo and Saint-Denis de La Réunion are strategically well positioned to make the privileged partners benefit from their complementarity.

Fastjet enhances its product offering

Effective 6 August, fastjet has enhanced its product offering to passengers by including the first item of checked luggage as well as a snack and or refreshment in all tickets sold.

Previously, fastjet charged all luggage and on-board snacks separately. The move comes following several months of research into market trends and customer expectations with the airline exchanging its BigSaver and Achiever fares for the new-look, value product.

Fastjet chief executive Nico Bezuidenhout said that fastjet will continue to offer affordable fares for everyone. “As a pan-African value airline fastjet endeavours to make air travel affordable and accessible in every market we serve. Beyond the redevelopment of our product, fastjet is also presently working on wider distribution and more payment methods, growing our network and making it easier for everyone to do business with us.”

Fastjet recently launched daily flights between Harare and Bulawayo in Zimbabwe, added an additional frequency between Dar es Salaam in Tanzania and Harare on Wednesdays and introduced double daily flights between Maputo and Beira in Mozambique.

Katara Hospitality and AccorHotels join forces in Sub-Saharan Africa

Katara Hospitality, global hotel owner, developer and operator, based in Qatar and AccorHotels announced the creation of an investment fund with a targeted investment capacity of over USD 1bn dedicated to hospitality in various Sub-Saharan African countries.

The fund will target greenfield projects, brownfield projects and conversions of existing hotels through acquisitions, in a region which offers robust growth opportunities. Approximately 40 hotels (around 9.000 rooms) will span across the wide range of internationally renowned brands of AccorHotels, from economy to luxury segments, including residences.

New scanners could allow travellers to keep their liquids and laptops

The US Transportation Security Administration (TSA) has announced plans to expand testing of a new carry-on bag screening technology that it says could detect the kinds of materials that caused it to issue a ban on liquids and powders earlier this year.

The TSA said it plans to have up to 40 units in place at 15 US airports by the end of this year, with plans for another 100 by the end of the government’s fiscal year 2019. The new checkpoint technology is expected to result in fewer bag checks. In the future, the agency said, “passengers may also be able to leave laptops and liquids in their carry-on bags.”

The computed tomography scanners (CT) utilise 3-D technology similar to the kind doctors use to view and rotate images of the human body.