By Dr. Woldgang H. Thome, ETN Uganda –
Ehiopian Airlines cuts flights between Addis Ababa to Brussels, Rome, Milan and Paris.
From what can be seen, Brussels flights will be reduced from currently 6 to 5 only, three of which will be operated by B757 single aisle aircraft via Rome, instead of Paris.
Milan Mapensa will see flights reduce from daily to 4 a week only, to be served via Rome, also using a single aisle B757.
Paris flights will from 20th June onwards reduce from 6 to 5 per week, using the B767-300.
In view of the routing changes, Rome will see the number of flights northbound rise from 8 to 11 while the southbound flights will rise from 7 to 10, mostly using B757 single aisle aircraft.
The use of the ageing B757 single aisle aircraft will undoubtedly be a challenge for the airline as passengers in this day and age come to expect flying on a modern wide body aircraft, similar to resistance found in the market over the use of the Bombardier Q400 to East African destinations instead of a B737-800 jet. The aircraft choice is therefore giving rise to speculation that the airline either does not have sufficient wide body aircraft available or else demand has dropped so substantially on the mentioned routes that the use of a smaller aircraft became necessary, besides the lesser frequencies. Watch this space though on market reaction and how that schedule will change come the winter schedule for 2013.