DALLAS – Qatar Airways (QR) and Johannesburg-based Airlink (4Z) have struck a comprehensive codeshare agreement that improves connectivity between 45 destinations in 13 countries throughout southern Africa and the rest of the world.
Customers will be able to book for flights to destinations in southern Africa and U.S. cities like New York and Dallas, in addition to prominent European destinations like London, Copenhagen, and Barcelona and popular Asian locations like Manila, Jakarta, and Cebu.
The agreement also increases QR’s footprint in southern Africa, with improved access to destinations such as Ggeberha (Port Elizabeth) Hoedspruit, Skukuza, and George in South Africa, and beyond to Botswana, Namibia, Zambia, Zimbabwe, and Mozambique.
Through this new codeshare agreement, passengers will be able to book connecting flights on both airlines with just one reservation for a hassle-free ticketing, check-in, boarding, and baggage-check experience throughout the entire trip.
Airlink’s main business is to provide services between smaller, under-served towns and larger hubs and has expanded to offer flights on larger, mainline routes. The airline has a network of over 60 routes across 50+ destinations.
Qatar Airways and Southern Africa
After the pandemic, the Qatari airline became the first carrier to offer additional routes in southern Africa, beginning flights to Luanda, Harare, and Lusaka last year. This month, it will restart service to Windhoek, adding another entry point to 4Z’s wide regional network via eight local gateways.
The new codeshare flights are open for booking and, pending government permission, will start flying on July 6, 2022.
In addition to 10 weekly flights to Cape Town and four weekly flights to Durban, QR operates 21 direct weekly flights from Doha to Johannesburg. Travelers may reach locations on six different continents with ease from South Africa thanks to Hamad International Airport (DOH).
Comments from Qatar, Airlink CEOs
Qatar Airways Group Chief Executive, His Excellency Mr. Akbar al Baker said, “Expanding our network with Airlink gives our customers more choice of destinations and flights, that we hope will contribute to the rapid recovery of travel, which plays such an important role in southern African economies.”
Al Baker continued, “We have boosted our presence in the African market by adding eight new destinations since the start of the pandemic and fostering partnerships such as this dynamic agreement with Airlink which will greatly enhance our offering to our customers and support travel and trade.”
Airlink Chief Executive, Mr. Rodger Foster said, “This development is an endorsement of Airlink’s relevance to providing air access to the entire region through our expansive network of destinations, which when considered in conjunction with Qatar Airways’ global reach creates unparalleled connectivity opportunities.”
Foster added, “As southern Africa’s leading airline, Airlink provides comprehensive, safe, and reliable air transportation services, enabling socio-economic development by connecting people with each other and facilitating trade within the region and beyond.”
Featured image: Qatar Airways