- The Germany airline's decision to consider a second dance with Zimbabwe, after having joined a number of airlines to pull out of Harare between 2000 and 2008 on account of hyperinflation that rendered the Zimbabwean currency worthless, is said to be informed by the economic conditions in the country which are steadily improving.
By Mutsa Makuvaza
GERMAN airline Lufthansa Group has revealed it will fly the Frankfurt to Victoria Falls route starting May 2022, in what observers say is a huge endorsement of how central Zimbabwe’s key tourism hotspot is to major European economies.
The Germany airline’s decision to consider a second dance with Zimbabwe, after having joined a number of airlines to pull out of Harare between 2000 and 2008 on account of hyperinflation that rendered the Zimbabwean currency worthless, is said to be informed by the economic conditions in the country which are steadily improving.
In a statement which we publish below, the Lufthansa Group said the flights into Victoria Falls will be on Wednesdays, Fridays and Sundays, and will go via Windhoek in Namibia.
The routes will be operated by the Lufthansa Group’s low-cost carrier, Eurowings Discover, with flights beginning in Summer 2022 and ticket sales starting earlier.
Eurowings Discover will take a slightly different approach, with new routes planned to target tourist travel from both of the German flag carrier’s main hubs. Four of the routes will originate at the Lufthansa Group’s Frankfurt home.
“Eurowings is excited to announce that with effect from 30 March 2022, our sub-Sahara Africa will grow, offering three weekly flights from Frankfurt to Victoria Falls,” reads the statement titled “Our Latest Destination: Victoria Falls”.
Luftahansa’s return to Zimbabwe will see passengers’ profit from the entire Lufthansa Group network of 10,775 weekly frequencies to 270 destinations in 105 countries worldwide.
Previously known by the name Ocean, Eurowings Discovery is aimed at long-haul leisure travelers. Using Airbus A330s, the startup aims to compete against Condor, another well-established German carrier.
The Airbus planes will go by the tail number 4Y. Flights depart Frankfurt in Germany and land at Windhoek, before proceeding to Victoria Falls. The planes then return back to Frankfurt via Windhoek. This will happen thrice a week.
However, the Windhoek-Frankfurt flights will be occurring daily.
Reacting to the developments, a tourism player told the Zimbabwe Voice that the news would boost Zimbabwe’s tourism footprint across the world particularly western and central Europe.
“We are definitely creeping back to the good old days when our tourism destinations were the darling of central and western Europe,” said the business executive.
“It’s early days yet but we are slowly getting back into the groove. What’s now required is for political players to stop cranking up the heat ahead of the 2023 elections as this could negatively impact on the tourism sector’s rebound.” – Zimbabwe Voice □