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Kenya Airways to fly back Americans stuck in Kenya over coronavirus

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A Kenya Airways plane. FILE PHOTO | NMG

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Summary

  • Kenya Airways #ticker:KQ (KQ) is planning to fly back US citizens who are still stuck in Kenya in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic that has grounded airlines across the world.
  • The flight, set to leave Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA), Nairobi today at 9pm will only take off should KQ sell all the seats on the flight.
  • The flight has 30 business class seats and 204 economy class seats.

Kenya Airways #ticker:KQ (KQ) is planning to fly back US citizens who are still stuck in Kenya in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic that has grounded airlines across the world.

The flight, set to leave Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA), Nairobi today at 9pm will only take off should KQ sell all the seats on the flight.

The flight has 30 business class seats and 204 economy class seats.

An economy class ticket on this flight costs $3350 (Sh357, 4450) while a business class ticket is going at $ 4000 (Sh426, 800).

“This will be a direct flight to John F. Kennedy International Airport, New York,” said a statement from the US Embassy in Nairobi Wednesday adding that bookings will end six hours before the flight departs for New York.

The announcement comes barely a few days after KQ restricted its operations to domestic routes after it grounded international passenger travel following the State order banning international flights to curb the coronavirus outbreak.

The airline’s chief executive Allan Kilavuka in a staff memo on Sunday said Mombasa and Kisumu flights will remain operational, offering a sigh of relief to domestic travellers.

The loss-making carrier will, however, ground all international passenger flights from Tuesday midnight, a big hit on its revenues.

“To comply with the directive, we have, therefore, temporarily suspended all international services effective midnight March 25, 2020, until further notice,” said Mr Kilavuka in the memo.

Kenya on March 13 confirmed its first case of the coronavirus.

Nine new cases of the virus were confirmed in the country Tuesday raising the total number of patients to 25.

Health cabinet Secretary Mutahi Kagwe in a statement Tuesday said the new cases are spread out in Nairobi, Mombasa, Kilifi and Kwale counties.