By Tichaona Kurewa
ZIMBABWE’s engagement and re-engagement efforts continue to bear fruit, with German airline, Eurowings Discover, launching its inaugural flight on the Frankfurt- Victoria Falls route.
Eurowings Discover, which is part of the Lufthansa Group, is the first intercontinental airline ever to offer direct flights from Frankfurt to Victoria Falls.
The airline has scheduled three weekly direct flights from Frankfurt to Victoria Falls International Airport until mid-November.
Captain Wolfgang Raebiger, who is also the Chief Executive Officer of the new airline, operated the first flight to Victoria Falls.
“This flight marks a special milestone for our airline Eurowings Discover, We are proud to be the first intercontinental airline offering direct flights to Victoria Falls as of today. It has never been easy for travellers from all over Europe to get to know this beautiful country, its culture and kind-hearted people and of course, the stunning natural wonder Victoria Falls. Our booking figures show that travellers from all over Europe are increasingly drawn to the vastness and beauty of the African continent and we are convinced that they will value Victoria Falls as a great and unique addition to our portfolio,” he said.
For Germany Ambassador to Zimbabwe, His Excellency Udo Vol highlighted the launch of a flight linking Frankfurt and Victoria Falls is a direct response to the fact that travel has become an important factor in people’s lives.
“Travellers from Germany constitute an important factor in the international tourism business. Zimbabwe, on the other hand, is an extremely beautiful and attractive destination in Africa. Therefore, I very much welcome the fact, that tourists from Germany venturing into Africa are now being provided a much easier access not only to the majestic Victoria Falls but to Zimbabwe altogether. At the same time, a fast route to Germany is now available to the people of Zimbabwe,” he said.
Improved air connectivity with various source markets around the world is expected to play a key role in the recovery of the tourism sector.
“The return of Lufthansa under the Eurowings Discover banner, and connecting Victoria Falls with Europe is a great milestone in efforts which place Zimbabwe back on the world tourism map, giving due recognition of our country as a competitive tourist destination. This is a grand move which will spur tourism growth, trade and investment,” said the Minister of Environment, Climate, Tourism and Hospitality Industry, Hon. Mangaliso Ndlovu.
“We are elated that this new scheduled flight has the ability to enhance connectivity from all over Europe into Zimbabwe and specifically, into the Victoria Falls resort city. This will greatly drive the development of tourism in Zimbabwe and the Kavango Zambezi Trans-frontier Conservation Area (KAZA),” added Honourable-Felix Mhona Minister of Transport and Infrastructural Development.
Germany is the second largest European tourism source market for Zimbabwe after the United Kingdom.