Air Tanzania is to resume flights to South Africa on Friday in a bid to attract South African tourists and business travellers.

The revived passenger schedule will connect four major airports in Tanzania with OR Tambo International Airport in Johannesburg with four direct flights per week on Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays and Sundays, Tanzania’s Citizen TV reported.

Josephat Kagirwa, ATCL’s public affairs spokesman, confirmed that the four local airports to introduce South African connections are Julius Nyerere International Airport in Dar es Salaam, Zanzibar International Airport, Kilimanjaro International Airport in northern Tanzania, and Mwanza International Airport.

Return tickets will initially cost $299 (R4 273,04) to July 15 as the flights are re-launched. Thereafter the normal ticket price will be $347 (R4959.01). 

Air Tanzania Company Ltd’s (ATCL) recently-acquired Boeing 787- 8 Dreamliner jet has the capacity to carry 262 passengers. Dreamliner will be replaced by an Airbus A220-300 on the Johannesburg route from July 16.

“We expect to maintain this route as we prepare for long-haul flights to India and China,” said Kagirwa.

South Africa is in a strategic position when it comes to linking airlines in the southern and East African region to destinations abroad, including Australia.

Latest official figures show that about 16,000 tourists from Australia visited Tanzania in 2017, mostly using connections through Johannesburg. In the same year, there were 3,300 visitors from New Zealand and 2,600 from the Pacific Rim (Fiji, Solomon, Samoa and Papua New Guinea).