Air Seychelles has taken the decision to suspend its service between Durban and Seychelles, effective 27 July, 2017.
The performance of the twice-weekly operation and its contribution to inbound tourism in the Seychelles did not meet company expectations.
Roy Kinnear, Chief Executive Officer of Air Seychelles, said: “We have taken the tough decision to discontinue our Durban route as the volume of inbound traffic has fallen short of our expectations.
“Since being launched, the route has relied on travellers connecting to our Mumbai flight on the way to India, while point-to-point traffic demand to the Seychelles has been lower than anticipated.
“The competitive nature of the route and volume of alternative options paired with extremely low fares being charged on the Durban to India traffic flow unfortunately mean this is not a viable ongoing commercial operation for Air Seychelles.
“Whilst being a hard and unfortunate decision to have to take, Durban will continue to be served in conjunction with our key codeshare partner South African Airways who offer excellent connectivity between Johannesburg and Durban.”
Ambassador Maurice Loustau-Lalanne, Minister for Tourism, Civil Aviation, Ports and Marine, said: “In the fast-moving aviation industry, a successful airline has to adapt quickly to changing market conditions, especially a boutique airline such as Air Seychelles.
“Tourism is the main engine of the Seychelles economy and, unfortunately, the Durban service did not produce the expected results in terms of supporting the growth of the industry.
“Our flag carrier will continue to fly to Johannesburg, the biggest city in South Africa, five times a week, to ensure our people, businesses and governments remain well-connected.”
Guests booked on flights to and from Durban’s King Shaka International Airport beyond 27 July, 2017 will be reprotected on Air Seychelles’ Johannesburg flights, which are operating as per normal schedule.
In addition, business and leisure travellers will still be able to travel easily from Durban to Seychelles via a short stop in Johannesburg, thanks to a codeshare agreement with South African Airways.
About Air Seychelles
Air Seychelles was established in 1978 and began long-haul service in 1983. The airline currently offers international flights to Abu Dhabi, Johannesburg, Mauritius and Mumbai. Air Seychelles also offers more than 350 domestic scheduled flights a week throughout the archipelago, including domestic charter services. As the national airline of the Republic of Seychelles, Air Seychelles is a pillar of tourism, the island nation’s strongest and growing economic sector. The airline maintains a strategic partnership with Etihad Airways, the national airline of the United Arab Emirates and 40 per cent stakeholder.