Eye on the Bird – Reflecting on 2 years of Covid-19 with fastjet

Southern Africa: Nearly two years since most airlines were forced to ground their entire fleet or restricted to fly to Southern Africa or flights within the region. Compounded by numerous border closures, millions of Covid-19 cases, and shattered travel industry, one airline was committed to keeping access and efficient in daily flights during lockdowns, reconnecting Zimbabwe and South Africa for trade, commerce, and tourism.

fastjet’s Agility

Although many regional airlines grounded their fleet fastjet continually made strides to offer customer-centered solutions to travel challenges invoked by the pandemic. Fastjet’s nature as a young and low-cost airline, its business model, fleet, as well as its strong connection to Southern Africa be the reason for the airline’s flexibility and adaptability during the volatile period.

fastjet onboard crew handing over a passenger COVID-19 precaution kit.

One of the main priorities of fastjet has been providing not only passengers and crew but also governments with peace of mind that the airline is taking the necessary precautions to quell the spread of Covid-19 onboard their airlines. With their mantra, “Fly with Confidence,” fastjet anticipates the need for masks and cabin crew wearing personal protective apparel to remain as an industry standard for the foreseeable future. Yedu Lani Travel magazine this month sat down (virtually) with fastjet personnel to reflect on how the budget airline navigated through Covid 19 pandemic and their conviction in continuing to operate.

The fastjet Interview

You have done well in facilitating efficient travel during the pandemic, however, why did you chose to continue amidst the COVID pandemic when most airlines halted services?

As a proud small Zimbabwean business, We Keep on Going the Distance. During that challenging period from April to 1 October 2020, we were the only carrier offering repatriation flights between Zimbabwe and South Africa; reuniting people with their loved ones and ensuring that essential staff had a reliable means to travel.

What can be improved in the travel and tourism industry to achieve confidence and safety for travelers during and post the pandemic?

Collaboration is key. As fastjet we continuously demonstrate our support of the local tourism industry. This has been seen by our close collaboration with the Zimbabwe Tourism Authority and other tourism players in Zimbabwe and South Africa. As a proud Zimbabwean airline we will continue to offer our customers, Value, Choice, and Flexibility.

Has the crisis brought an opportunity for fastjet to increase both its direct e-commerce channel share and increase in aircraft within the region?

We were the first airline to re-introduce services from Victoria Falls to Johannesburg in December 2020, providing a needed commercial link between the two destinations with a three-day-a-week service. That increased to a daily service in May this year.


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