The Namibia Airports Company (NAC) says it can accommodate increased traffic at Hosea Kutako International Airport (HKIA) by scheduling flights to avoid congestion, and by upgrading the terminal building as well as facilities such as check-in counters.
This follows the recent announcement by Qatar Airways that it will, as of September this year, offer four weekly direct flights between Windhoek and Doha.
“HKIA is ready to handle increased air traffic movements, which can be handled through scheduling airlines at different time slots (slot allocation) to avoid congestion on the apron and the terminal facilities. Also, during April 2016 the NAC will embark on renovations of the terminal building and upgrade its facilities such as check-in counters, flight displays, airport baggage trolleys, closed circuit television (CCTV), access control and the CUTE system,” said NAC’s spokesperson Dan Kamari.
He explained that the Common Use Terminal Equipment system (CUTE) is utilised by airport operations to allow the facilitation of check-in for multiple airlines from one desk. “The space saving benefits of the CUTE system are clear, as the need for airline-specific, dedicated check-in desks is eliminated. The implementation of CUTE system for enhanced airport operations has enabled greater efficiency and cost-saving implications throughout the shared platform,” Kamati noted.
He further pointed out that HKIA has a level 9 fire fighting category in line with the provisions of the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) while the airport itself has a Code 4E category. “The B787 Dreamliner -8 0r- 9 falls within our airport category, therefore HKIA is capable to handle the aircraft in question,” he said.
The newly announced Qatar Airways route between Windhoek and Doha is part of the airline’s network expansion of 14 new world destinations. The Windhoek flight is one of six new African routes that Qatar Airways would begin to service as of this year. Other African routes are between Doha and Marrakech in Morocco that would begin in July three times per week, the resumption of daily scheduled service to Seychelles as from December 12, and as of January 2017 three flights per week from Doha to Douala in Cameroon, and Libreville in Gabon utilising one aircraft.
There would also be a non-stop service, three times weekly from Doha to Lusaka in Zambia from mid-2017.
Qatar Airways, the national carrier of the State of Qatar, is one of the fastest growing airlines operating one of the youngest fleets in the world. Now in its 19th year of operations, Qatar Airways has a modern fleet of 179 aircraft.
The introduction of the new destinations comes two years after the opening of Qatar Airways’ hub, Hamad International Airport. The airport, one of the most technologically advanced modern airports in the world, serves more than 28 million passengers annually – which number is set to grow up to 50 million in 2018.