KQ temporarily suspends flights to France, Netherlands

National carrier Kenya Airways has announced the temporary suspension of flights to some of its European routes during the entire month of February. The carrier says it will suspend services to France’s Charles de Gaulle Airport and the Netherlands Schipol Airport. “The temporary suspension is due to new COVID-19 regulations in Europe which have resulted in depressed demand,” KQ said in a statement on Friday. The airline expects to resume regular services to France on March 3, 2021 and to Netherlands on March 7. KQ has continued to struggle in its international operations as the evolving COVID-19 pandemic continues to pin down passenger demand. “Europe has been quite a struggle particularly Amsterdam and Paris as the market sees a resurgence of COVID-19. We have however seen high demand to China and India. We do however have a number of restrictions including the number of seats and flight frequencies which we can deploy to destinations such as India and Bangkok,” Kenya Airways Chief Executive Officer Allan Kilavuka told Citizen Digital in an interview last week. The airline has been forced to rely on its cargo business to stay a float with KQ now mulling the full deployment of part of its Dreamliner fleet for freight operations. At the end of last year, the company issued a warning indicating passenger demand will remain subdued in the near-term owing to complexities created by the COVID-19 pandemic. “Demand for air travel is still a fraction of the 2019 numbers and it is projected to stay supressed for atleast the next 12 months,” KQ said in a November business performance update.

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