Once-dormant airline to launch nonstop flights from Uganda

Mar 2, 2021

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Uganda’s flag carrier is set to return to long-haul flying. Uganda Airlines is reportedly planning to launch flights from its base at Entebbe, Uganda (EBB) to London Heathrow (LHR) later this month.

Interestingly, the airline will use one of its Airbus A330-800 aircraft in order to operate the route, which is set to launch on March 28, with five weekly frequencies.

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The young, reborn airline, which first recommenced service in August 2019, will operate the 4,029-mile journey after having secured rights to operate the service, as reported by ChimpReports. The flight will arrive in London at 6:45 a.m. before departing on the return journey back to Entebbe at 9 a.m.

(Image courtesy of GC Map)

On the route, Uganda Airlines will see little competition, as no other airline offers nonstop service to Entebbe. Flights on the route aren’t yet on sale. And, when they are, don’t expect to be able to redeem miles, as the airline isn’t part of any alliance and doesn’t have major partners.

In December 2020, Uganda Airlines took delivery of its first A330-800 aircraft. Inside, the aircraft features a three-cabin configuration: 20 lie-flat business-class seats in a 1-2-1 configuration, 28 premium economy seats and 210 economy seats for a total capacity of 258 seats. It took delivery of its second — and final — A330-800 on order in February 2021.

It appears as though Uganda Airlines also plans to use its A338 on service to Dubai (DXB), Guangzhou (CAN) and Mumbai (BOM).

“The shareholders look forward to the continued growth of Uganda Airlines’ passenger and cargo portfolio with the start of long-haul flights to Dubai, London, Guangzhou, and Mumbai, upon conclusion of the ongoing A330neo operations certification process; and further expansion of the African network to include Johannesburg, Lusaka, Harare, Khartoum, Addis Ababa, Lagos, Accra, Goma, Lubumbashi and more; as well as interline and codeshare partnerships for seamless global operations,” the airline said on its Twitter.

The move by Uganda Airlines to order two A330-800s was an interesting choice for the carrier. The A330-800 is one of the least-ordered aircraft — in fact, only Uganda Airlines and Kuwait Airways have taken delivery of the aircraft.

Related: Airbus certifies smallest A330neo in race to replace aging 767s

According to Airbus’ order sheet, there are only 14 A330-800s on order. Airbus had more A330-800 orders on the books, but a number of airlines have switched to larger versions of the A330neo family, such as the -900.

Related: Airbus is building an airplane no one wants

Prior to its revival in 2019, Uganda Airlines had been dormant since 2001. In addition to the two A330 aircraft in its fleet, the carrier also has a total of four Bombardier CRJ-900 aircraft that operate domestic and shorter-haul routes.

Uganda Airlines couldn’t be reached for comment.

Featured photo courtesy of Airbus.

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