LONDON – Brussels Airlines has announced that it will continue to move forward with growth in the African continent, one of the airline’s most important markets. The airline had previously reduced its intercontinental fleet from 10 down to 8 aircraft as part of the turnaround program which the airline launched in 2020, however, as the COVID-19 crisis starts to come to a close the carrier has seen an opportunity to once again expand their services in the African Continent.
The airline started resizing its route network in 2020 and was following a set-out route and plan for long-term recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic, part of this plan saw the airline discontinue its operations in Conakry (Guinea) and Ouagadougou (Burkina Faso) last year. The routes were axed as part of the airline’s decision to focus on lowering the company’s cost structure to bring it back to a competitive level so that Brussels Airlines could hold and build a sustainable future.
With the recovery plan now in full swing and the increase in demand, the airline will once again expand back into operating flights to Conakry (Guinea) and Ouagadougou (Burkina Faso), both of which are due to start from June 9, 2022, with this and the addition of a 9th aircraft the carrier said it will also be increasing flight frequencies to Freetown, Monrovia, Banjul, and Lomé.
Jan Derycke, Head of Network and Planning said: “We are happy to welcome Conakry and Ouagadougou to the Brussels Airlines network again. With the additional A330 aircraft, we will operate 3 weekly flights to Conakry and Ouagadougou as well as add additional frequencies to Freetown, Monrovia, Banjul, and Lomé.”
Peter Gerber, CEO of Brussels Airlines said: “We always said that we would go for growth as soon as market conditions permitted. As we see strong demand in the West African market, we want to take the opportunity to go for growth and invest in an expansion of our African network. The allocation of this aircraft to Brussels Airlines is a clear sign of Lufthansa’s trust in Brussels Airlines and confirms once again our position as Africa expert within the Lufthansa Group.”
It is also believed that in line with this continues to increase in growth and travel demand that Brussels Airlines will hire around 50 new Cabin crew members to join the company over the coming months as it continues to work on ensuring that it can keep up with the demand for travel. The airline confirmed that it would stay true to its promise of first offering the open positions to former cabin crew members who did not see their temporary contract prolonged last year and that in addition to this the new increase in the intercontinental fleet would allow its pilots to have the option to look into expanding their flying into the long haul sector.