Mukuba Airlines Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Mwansa Chalwe, declared in a local radio interview that this would be Zambia’s first budget airline and that it is targeted to democratise flying for the Zambian population with fares ranging from US$35 to US$50 for a one-way trip.
According to Phiri Davies (Commercial Director), the airline is in its last phase of licensing with the DCA and had already obtained its Air Service Permit (ASP) from the Ministry of Transport.
Mukuba Airlines will be operating three types of aircraft, consisting of the ATR42/500 and ATR 72/500 turbo prop where their main concentration will be on domestic routes between Livingstone, Lusaka, Ndola, Mfuwe, Chipata, Mansa and Solwezi and eventually spreading out to destinations such as Kasaba Bay on Lake Tanganyika. Mr Chalwe also stated the company has an investment plan of between US$5 and 15 million in the project and that it is unfortunate that Zambians on the other hand have been left as spectators in their own country as they have not sized the opportunities, especially in big business mainly due to lack of capital and expertise in big business..
The company is expected to employ 35 people in its first year and an additional 54 people in the second year where its offices will be based in Livingstone.
This is very good news for tourism to Livingstone as it will open up the domestic market within Zambia and allow more Zambians from other parts of the country to visit Livingstone. The airline aims to conduct all their bookings online which is still being worked on and will go live very soon.
Date: 11 April 2013