Etihad extends reach in Africa with kulula deal
The increasing interest in South Africa as a holiday destination for travellers from the United Arab Emirates (UAE) has prompted a new codeshare deal between two leading airlines in the region.
Etihad Airways, the national airline of the UAE, has forged a new codeshare agreement with kulula, South Africa’s award-winning low cost carrier. The codeshare deal offers Etihad Airways customers flight options to a number of key cities in South Africa that include Cape Town, Durban, George and East London via Johannesburg.
Etihad Airways will place its EY code on kulula’s scheduled flights between Johannesburg and these popular coastal cities – an agreement that will allow guests access to through-check-in and baggage transfer to their final destination.
The new codeshare services are now on sale, with travel from the start of the Northern Winter schedule on 30 October.
The agreement with kulula strengthens Etihad Airways’ commitment to Africa and brings the total number of destinations that it serves across the continent to 23 through its existing codeshare partnerships with Kenya Airways, Royal Air Maroc, and strategic equity partner Air Seychelles.
Peter Baumgartner, Etihad Airways chief executive officer, said: “kulula is an innovative and award-winning airline and this new codeshare agreement demonstrates Etihad Airways’ growing ambitions to strengthen our operations across Africa.
“Through the agreement, kulula will give inbound passengers direct access from Johannesburg to four key destinations along South Africa’s renowned coastline, and I am certain the extended reach offered through this partnership will appeal to business and leisure travellers alike.”
Erik Venter, chief executive officer of kulula’s parent company, Comair, said: “We are delighted to be adding Etihad Airways to our growing list of strategic airline partnerships and are excited about exploring additional opportunities to expand on the relationship. We look forward to welcoming Etihad Airways’ customers on board our flights.”
Etihad Airways currently operates scheduled services to 10 destinations in Africa, namely Johannesburg, Nairobi, Entebbe, Dar es Salaam, Khartoum, Casablanca, Rabat, Lagos, Cairo and Mahé in the Seychelles.