China Southern arrived in Nairobi today on its maiden flight from Guangzhou, adding initially three weekly flights under a codeshare agreement with Kenya Airways. The airline joins Skyteam partner Kenya Airways on the route which currently flies daily from Nairobi to Guangzhou with four of the seven services routing via Bangkok.
China Southern will fly nonstop into Nairobi every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday operating an Airbus A330-200 aircraft. Its passengers destined for other African countries will use Kenya Airways’ onward flights to a range of African destinations beyond Nairobi. In turn, Kenya Airways passengers already have the option to fly to other Chinese and Far Eastern destinations on flights operated by China Southern but on the same ticket issued by Kenya Airways.
All passenger handling will take place at Kenya Airways’ new home Terminal 1A, while premium passengers will use the Pride and Simba lounges of Kenya Airways.
Kenya’ business and tourism sectors have welcomed the additional three flights from China which has in recent years become a growing tourism source market as well as a major trading partner for Kenya and other East African countries.
The management of China Southern will celebrate the inaugural flight with a number of activities both at the airport and in the city of Nairobi where they intend to meet with tourism and business leaders.
Both Kenya Airways and China Southern have gone to some lengths to dispel unfounded media reports in sections of the Kenyan press that the flights will bring about a fierce business clash but emphasized that the additional three services are all operated under an expanded codeshare arrangement which will benefit both Skyteam partner airlines.