Distinguished Guests, Members of the Press from Tanzania & Uganda, Management & Staff of Air Uganda, Ladies and Gentlemen, I am delighted to welcome you to this cocktail to celebrate the re-launch of direct Air Uganda flights from Entebbe to Kilimanjaro. It was a pleasure for me to take a direct flight from Entebbe to Kilimanjaro today; it was a very convenient, fast and comfortable way to get to this beautiful city and country.
Air Uganda operated flights to Kilimanjaro in the past, which were stopped in 2008 and it is therefore a great feeling to be back here, finishing what we started and offering direct flights again.
The number of passengers between Entebbe and Kilimanjaro has grown significantly over the past few years with the strengthening of the East African community. Arusha is now home to the headquarters of the EAC and it is only fitting that the “wings of East Africa” come here also.
Arusha also remains a big tourist destination with many natural attractions including
- Mount Kilimanjaro and
- Mount Meru
- It is also the gateway to the largest national park in this region, the Serengeti.
Our flights now offer direct links between these key areas and the not so publicized secrets of Entebbe and the Great lakes Region. I am talking about Lake Victoria and its upper regions of Jinja, the source of the river Nile and its associated hot springs surrounding the ring of fire and the legendary Gorilla trails. We have started these services by offering four weekly flights on Tuesdays, Wednesday, Fridays and Sundays.
Ladies and Gentlemen
Air Uganda prides itself in offering its customers, competitive fares, on-time flights and great customer service. We are a young airline, but our reputation for high standards is growing everyday throughout East Africa. We are also an IOSA certified airline with safety, security and operating standards at par with the best in the industry.
The courteous, friendly and professional service offered by our staff and partners both on the ground and on board our aircraft is one of the key reasons why Air Uganda is steadily becoming your favourite airline. I would urge you to come and experience for yourself the world re-known hospitality of the people of Uganda.
The direct flights to Kilimanjaro is only the beginning of our planned expansion, aimed at linking more city pairs in East Africa through our hub at Entebbe International Airport in support of trade and tourism. In July this year, we will add direct flights to Mogadishu.
Ladies and Gentlemen
Let me take this opportunity to share a few key developments by your favourite airline. Earlier this month we received our third 50 seater CRJ 200 aircraft. This new addition brings much needed commonality to the fleet, making operations easier and seamless. The new aircraft also allows for schedule convenience & flexibility as well as additional frequencies to key destinations like Juba in South Sudan.
Air Uganda has also upgraded is website platforms to allow you to find your flights and transact business with us 24/7. By accessing our website on www.air-uganda.com, you can now book online, pay online using credit cards, debit cards and 3D secured cards. This is in addition to the cash payment options which already existed on our links. You will also be pleased to know that our website platform also offers on-line check-in and the ability to print your Boarding Passes for those travelling through our hub at Entebbe. These features will be rolled out to all our other stations throughout 2013. The modernization of our operating platforms and e-commerce infrastructure is one of our central objectives in building a world class airline.
Ladies and gentlemen
As you are fully aware, our two nations Uganda and Tanzania have had strong ties and share a common history. Our future is also enter-twined as we look forward to the benefits of closer ties within East Africa and the AU. We believe that our services will go a long way towards promoting and cementing these ties.
Let me therefore close by thanking you for the tremendous support you have given us in the past, and invite you to partner with us as we develop not only this service to Kilimanjaro & Arusha, but the entire network throughout East Africa.
Thank you for coming. And look forward to see you on board our flights!