PRESS RELEASE: Durban’s route network grows with ASM

ASM’s consultancy expertise, working with the close and invaluable support from the Provincial Government of KwaZulu-Natal, has enabled Turkish Airlines, Ethiopian Airlines and Qatar Airways to grow their global networks and introduce new direct routes to Durban.

Following the increase in international passenger demand and developing economic ties, Durban now boasts direct connections to Istanbul, Addis Ababa and Doha.

As the host of World Routes 2015, Durban was able to showcase their destination and at the event, pre-scheduled meetings with airlines allows negotiations to flourish.

Turkish Airlines launched its 3rd South African route between Durban and Istanbul, with the flight taking off four times per week, opening up access to a number of key destinations, throughout Europe and North America.

Muhammed Mehdi Tunc, General Manager of the Turkish Airlines Johannesburg branch, commented: “Currently the Johannesburg/Istanbul route will branch out into two routes - Durban and Maputo - with plans to depart daily from Durban in the near future.”

This additional route marks impressive growth for Turkish Airlines, who have grown their routes to Africa by 340%, from 10 to 44 in 10 years, more than any other airline.

Ethiopian Airlines have commenced a new route from Addis Ababa Bole International Airport to Durban, growing trade, investment and tourism ties between Ethiopia and South Africa.

Ethiopian Group CEO, Tewolde Gebremariam, stated: "The new Durban service will give our customers more and convenient connectivity options when traveling within, to and from the continent. We will continue to expand our reach in our home market in Africa to support to the continent’s socio-economic integration and development.”

And finally, Qatar Airways has introduced a new four-times-weekly flight between Durban and Doha which marks an expansion of the airline’s operations and decade-long investment in South Africa. A total of 21 flights a week now connect South Africa to Qatar Airways’ global network.

Qatar Airways Group Chief Executive, His Excellency Mr. Akbar Al Baker commented: “Qatar is one of South Africa’s largest trading partners in the Middle East and adding Durban to our existing South African routes will further strengthen the bond between the two countries, especially in the tourism sector.”

Qatar celebrated the inaugural flight of the route in December 2015 with a fly-by of Durban’s beach front before landing at King Shaka International Airport. There were also media briefings, a VIP lunch for local dignitaries and sand recreation of Doha’s skyline from local artist Pumelelo Kole.

David Stroud, Managing Director of ASM, commented: “It’s been a pleasure to have worked with three well respected and ambitious airlines to create new direct routes with Durban. Through detailed studies we were able to demonstrate Durban’s potential, the new routes will have a profound impact on expanding economic growth and tourism between Durban and Turkey, Ethiopia and Qatar.”

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Notes to editors:

  • UK‐based ASM Ltd was founded in 1995 as the world’s first route development consultancy.
  • ASM was the founding company of Routes which organises world-renowned airline and airport networking events through its regional and global Route Development Forums. Each year, there is one global event and one regional event in Asia, Africa, Europe, the Americas and CIS respectively.
  • Routes and ASM were acquired by UBM Aviation Worldwide Ltd in August 2010. From 1stAugust 2012 Routes, ASM and the Airport Cities Conference and Exhibition become part of the UBM EMEA division of UBM plc.
  • UBM EMEA connects people and creates opportunities for companies across five continents to develop new business, meet customers, launch new products, promote their brands and expand their markets. Through premiere brands such as MD&M, CPhI, IFSEC, TFM&A, Cruise Shipping Miami, the Concrete Show, the Routes portfolio of events, Airport Cities and many others, UBM EMEA exhibitions, conferences, awards programs, publications, websites and training and certification programs are an integral part of the marketing plans of companies across more than 20 industry sectors.

For further information please contact:

Vicky Aitken

Marketing Manager

[email protected]

0161 234 2761