German airline company Lufthansa is planning to spread its wings into more African countries, giving turbulent-prone SAA and other local airlines a run for their money.
Lufthansa will now enhance both the commercial and business unit and is committed to growing further in Africa.
The airline currently offers more than 90 weekly departures from Burundi, Equatorial Guinea, Kenya, Mauritius, Namibia, Nigeria, Rwanda, Seychelles, South Africa, Tanzania, Uganda and Zimbabwe around to their hubs in Brussels, Frankfurt, Munich, Vienna and Zürich.
In the past three years, Lufthansa has opened five new routes in these markets apart from those that resumed after being on hold due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
Value of travel is in demand especially with leisure travel and business travel slowly coming back
Next year the airline plans to grow further in Africa and add the Johannesburg to Munich route as well as Nairobi to Brussels with Brussels Airlines to its schedule.
There has been a market demand on inbound flights to South Africa and the group has been getting 15% more passengers than before,
Speaking to Sunday World, Lufthansa Group’s senior vice-president (SVP) of global markets, Frank Naeve, said the aviation industry is one of the most competitive in the world.
“There are very few other industries that are more competitive. There are a lot of airlines operating and with different products and networks.
“As Lufthansa Group, we feel comfortable competing with our market competitors. We keep an eye on them and what they are doing and focus more on how we can better what we offer currently,” said Naeve.
Airline drops Kruger route
In terms of value proposition, Naeve said they focus on network quality, which includes the number of destinations that the airline currently flies to and the frequencies that they offer.
“We believe that we have a strong position, with having one of the broadest networks than any airline group in the world, also with our multiple brand strategies.
“Network reliability is also part of what we offer, not only publishing but also operating that network reliably and we focus on this very strongly.
“The new products that we are bringing in are also part of our value proposition strategy and we believe we are well represented around the globe with 2000 highly skilled customer service consultants.”
Naeve said the Kruger National Park/ Mpumalanga route had to be dropped because the demand wasn’t as expected.
Meanwhile, René Koinzack has been appointed as Lufthansa’s new senior director of sales for Southern and Eastern Africa, Nigeria and Equatorial Guinea.
He will head the commercial and sales activities of the Lufthansa Group Airlines in 24 African countries.