Air Tanzania will commence direct flights from Dar es Salaam to Entebbe this Sunday, August 26, Chimp Corps exclusively report.
The Tanzanian national carrier will land at Entebbe International Airport at 11:55am before departing at 1:10pm.
“The inaugural flight (TC 214) will depart from Dar es Salaam to Entebbe at 0930 hours and arrive at 1155 hours then return to Dar at 1225 hours,” reads a brief official note about Air Tanzania plans to operate in Uganda.
ChimpReports understands an inaugural ceremony will be held at Entebbe Airport on Sunday as soon the aircraft touches down.
The entry of Air Tanzania will be seen as a huge relief to travelers who have for decades endured the pain of long connecting flights by several commercial aircrafts operating in the East African region.
It’s also expected to heighten competition with Kenya Airways and RwandaAir which have for long dominated the Entebbe-Dar route via their transit hubs in Kigali and Nairobi.
The East African recently quoted Tanzanian officials as saying the carrier, which is barely into its second year of operation, would start a four-times-a week direct flight to Entebbe from Dar es Salaam and a three times a week flight to Bujumbura, on two routes which other airlines had tried to feed connecting traffic to their hubs.
For one to fly between Tanzania and Uganda, a connection must be made through Nairobi’s Jomo Kenyatta International Airport or Rwanda’s Kigali International Airport.
Air Tanzania will charge $363 for a return ticket to Entebbe, flying on Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Sunday.
KQ’s 15 years of dominance at the Entebbe hub could end, especially if Uganda revives its national carrier soon.
This development comes high on the heels of strengthened bilateral and commercial ties between Uganda and Tanzania.
Officials from both countries have been holding meetings in Kampala to enhance and consolidate bilateral cooperation frameworks.
It was agreed this week that a bilateral air services agreement be ratified by Uganda to deepen cooperation in the aviation sector.
Air Tanzania recently ordered for a fourth aircraft, a CS 300 Bombardier, from Canada, for both domestic and regional routes.
The airline also plans to launch new routes to Harare, Johannesburg, and Lusaka. It will then consider the Rwanda and Nairobi routes.
On the Entebbe route, Air Tanzania is expected to use Boeing 787-8 Dreamliners.
The same aircrafts will serve domestic destinations including Mwanza, Kilimanjaro and also Bujumbura.
Currently, the airline operates the international flight to Moroni in the Comoros Islands.
Domestically, it flies to Mbeya, Dodoma, Songea, Mwanza, Mbeya, Tabora, Kigoma, Mtwara and Bukoba.