April 20, 2018 – Middle Eastern carrier flydubai appears to have run into schedule integrity challenges on its newly launched Entebbe-Kinshasa service with late departures observed over the past two days.
The departure to Kinshasa was delayed by an hour and half on Thursday while an 80 minute delay was observed today according to Swedish flight tracking site flightradar24.
During the launch if the service on April 15, the carrier published a schedule that should ideally see Kinshasa bound flights depart Entebbe at 13.20, arriving in the Ndjili International Airport two hours later and the return leg touching down at Entebbe 20.15.
But observation of over the past two days has revealed sharp deviations from the published schedule. Flydubai was not available to explain the delays but industry veterans see it as the likely fallout of from its codeshare with its big cousin Emirates.
Emirates which also flies daily to Entebbe, does not operate to Kinshasa but could be using flydubai as a dipstick for a possible future service by selling the destination and then transferring Kinshasa bound passengers to flydubai at Entebbe. That means flydubai’s schedule integrity on the sector will be determined by how fast Emirates manages the transit in Entebbe.
Flydubai’s service is the first direct air link to the DRC capital since Uganda Airlines pulled from the route twenty years ago, ahead of its liquidation in 2001.