Safi Airways plans Frankfurt service resumption; increasing interline agreements
Safi Airways announced plans to resume services between Kabul and Frankfurt from next spring and receive its second A320 in Aug-2011 (Business Traveller, 07-Jul-2011). The airline, which withdrew service on the route in Oct-2010, will initially operate three times weekly with A330 equipment, increasing to a peak of five times weekly service. With the EU ban remaining in place for all Afghan-registered aircraft, the carrier plans to apply for a Gulf AOC and IATA Operational Safety Audit (IOSA). The carrier also stated that business class on Kabul-Dubai services is "always full". COO Michael McTighe added that the carrier has secured 12 interline agreements hopes British Airways will be the 13th within the next four to six weeks. More interline agreements with Indian carriers are also being targeted following the launch of Delhi services in Jun-2011.
Safi Airways: "One of the key things about Frankfurt is the transfer connections – there’s huge American and Canadian interest to put the route back in place again...t’s ironic that one of the biggest customers on the Frankfurt route was the German army – and it was the German CAA which shut it down.We had a leased A340 that we couldn’t fly to Europe, and on top we were paying a distressed rate for a B757 which was narrow body and not a very good onboard product. So we took the hit and decided to close Frankfurt carefully and properly – because we knew there may be a day when we want to go back," Michael McTighe, Chief Operating Officer. Source: Business Traveller, 07-Jul-2011.