East Africa anticipates benefits from Kenya - US direct flights

Kenya Airways to launch first US services in October 2018

East Africa-based Ethiopian Airlines operates nonstop flights from the USA east coast on westbound flights returning to Addis Ababa.

Subsequent flights for the inaugural flight has started selling for KSH 87,000 ($869).

"We are excited to announce the opening of ticket sales for the only non-stop daily flight from Nairobi to the U.S.", said KQ chief executive officer Sebastian Mikosz.

Flights will depart daily from Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA) at 11.25 pm arriving at John F Kennedy International Airport in NY at 6.25 am the following day.

"The move will cut the flight time between the two cities by more than seven hours", he said, noting it will take 15 hours eastbound and 14 hours westbound.

Speaking while making the announcement in Thursday, Kenya Airways chief executive officer Sebastian Mikosz said the airline will be targeting business and leisure travelers. It will land in NY the next day at 6.30 AM.

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"With over 40 American multinationals located in Nairobi and many more across Africa, the launch of daily flights is expected to further spur trade between America and Africa", the statement announcing the launch of the ticket sales reads.

Kenya Airways will be using its vast African connecting routes to pull passengers to fly direct to the US.

The airline already serves Africa, Europe, Middle-East, Indian sub-continent and Asia.

Kenya Airways a member of the Sky Team Alliance, is a leading African airline flying to 51 destinations worldwide, 42 of which are in Africa and carries over three million passengers annually. This includes its flagship B787 Dreamliner aircrafts.

Officials from governments in East Africa and aviation companies operating in the region have reacted enthusiastically to the fact that Kenyas Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA) has achieved Category One status.

Between January and October 2017 over 95,000 tourists visited Kenya, a 20 percent increase in traffic every year for the past two years.

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