Local Airlines Slash Holiday Fares

Domestic airline operators are strategically positioning themselves to attract more passengers as the festive season approaches. While some have announced competitive promotional air fares, others have increased their flight frequencies in response to growing traffic into some local destinations. Africa World Airlines, a regional and domestic operator, has announced a new promotional fare of GH�55 one-way from Accra to Kumasi and GH�85 one-way from Accra-Tamale. The new prices are effective from December 25 to January 25, 2013. The airline has also increased its flight frequency between Accra and Kumasi to three per day. Antrak Airlines is offering passengers a reduced fare of between GH�50-70 on the Accra-Kumasi and Accra-Takoradi routes, and GH�115 on the Accra-Tamale route. Starbow, another domestic and regional airline operator, has reduced ticket prices and increased flight frequency to Kumasi to five. The airline is offering passengers a reduced fare of GH�49-120 one-way on the Accra-Kumasi and the Accra-Takoradi routes. Passengers also get to enjoy a reduced fare of GH�149 one-way on the Accra-Tamale Route. Competition within the domestic aviation sector in the past three months has led to a reduction in ticket prices as carriers strategise to outwit each other. Kumasi Airport, as a result of the booming domestic aviation industry, has seen a tremendous increase in passenger throughput and traffic. It is currently the busiest domestic airport in the country. The facility has recorded an increase of 300 percent in passenger throughput�from an average of 4,000 passengers a month in 2011 to 16,000-- this year. The GACL, the company responsible for planning, developing, managing and maintaining all airports and aerodromes in the country, is undertaking extension and renovation works at the Kotoka International Airport (KIA) as well as Kumasi and Sunyani airports. The company is also seeking to raise US$173million and US$35.5 million for renovation and expansion works at the Kumasi and Sunyani airports respectively, through a public-private partnership. The Tamale airport is earmarked to be developed into an international airport to serve as an alternative to KIA in Accra.