Air Astana Celebrates 18th Anniversary with Resumption of Domestic Flights

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Air Astana, Kazakhstan’s flag carrier, has
celebrated its 18th anniversary with the resumption of a select
number of scheduled domestic flights.

The airline expects to
operate approximately 30% of its pre-COVID19 network by the end
of May.

Air Astana resumed scheduled flights between
Almaty and Nur-Sultan (Astana) on 1 May 2020, and scheduled
flights from each of those hubs to select regional centres across
Kazakhstan on 11 May 2020.

Services to Aktobe and Kyzylorda from
Almaty and Nur-Sultan resumed on 12 and 13 May respectively,
whilst flights to Oskemen from Almaty and Nur-Sultan recommenced
on 13 and 14 May respectively.

All flights are being operated by Airbus
A320/A321 and Embraer E190-E2 aircraft.


Snow leopard nose of an Air Astana Embraer E190-E2. Picture by Steven Howard of TravelNewsAsia.com Click to enlarge.

“Over the past 18 years Air Astana has established itself as a
strong and successful airline, with a sound safety and operational
record and award-winning passenger service, and consistently
strong financial performance,” said
Peter Foster, President and
CEO of the Air Astana group. “The present challenge is immense and
we don’t expect some of our markets to improve for many years,
however our track record of strong operational performance and
financial results will enable us to strengthen our position in
both Kazakhstan and the region when the recovery comes, as it
will.”

In March, Air Astana reported a
net profit of just over
US$30 million
on revenue of approximately US$900 million for 2019,
with passenger numbers increasing by 17% to over 5 million during
the year.

The airline has continued to modernise its fleet over the past 12
months, with the first of eight Airbus A321LR aircraft entering
service in October 2019. The LR will replace Boeing 757-200s and
Boeing 767-300s on international services to Asia and Europe, with
the current situation accelerating that process.

The airline also
took delivery of an additional Embraer E190-E2 aircraft during the
year, which will replace earlier generation Embraer 190s on
regional services across Central Asia and the Caucasus and on
smaller domestic routes.

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