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In September last year the airline received its operating permit to commence direct flights to the US, allowing the airline to engage in “scheduled and charter foreign air transportation of persons, property and mail from any point or points behind Kenya, via any point or points in Kenya and any intermediate points, to any point or points in the United States and beyond”. In February 2017, the airline was granted Category One status by the US Federal Aviation Administration paving the way for non-stop direct flights between the two countries.
Once the flights are launched it will mean a 22-hour reduction in travelling time and will also cut-out the need for lengthy layovers for travellers from Kenya. Flights are scheduled to depart Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA) daily at 10h30, with the estimated flight duration set at 15 hours, with passengers arriving at JFK at 06h30. The return service will depart at 13h30, arriving back at JKIA at 10h30 the following day.
Kenya Airways chairman, Michael Joseph told the East African that the airline is currently loading the flights into its system adding that flights will go live and be ready for bookings on Thursday.
“The launch of direct flights between Kenya and the United States will mark a significant milestone for the business and for the country.”
Each trip will have a maximum of 234 passengers — 204 in Economy and the rest in Business Class of the national carrier’s Dreamliner aircraft.