Kenyans to start flying directly to USA as early as next year after KQ obtained on 5th September 2017 an approval of Traffic Rights by the USA Department of Transport.
This could be the final order as part of ongoing procedures before getting approvals that will grant KQ permission to fly both passengers and cargo to America.
Transport Cabinet Secretary James Macharia however says to commence direct flights, JKIA must complete a security audit by the USA Transportation Security Administration as a Last Point of Departure – which is expected by early November 2017.
Thereafter, KQ will obtain an Air operating certificate from USA Federal Aviation Administration, which is expected early 2018 after which KQ will be able to fly direct to New York and Atlanta.
The direct flights will be a boon to tourism, and will also enhance quality for flower exports, which must currently pass through Europe. It will also boast AGOA exports. This will also go a long way towards making Kenya an aviation hub.
KQ is working with both the Kenyan Ministry of Transport and the US Department authorities to ensure all requirements are met.