Ascension Island Government (AIG) and St Helena Government (SHG) are pleased to announce that Comair Limited has been selected as the preferred bidder for the provision of air services between Ascension Island and St Helena.
Comair has recently been awarded the contract for return flights between Johannesburg and St Helena. The service to and from Ascension will be an extension to this service – initially on a frequency of once every four weeks and for a trial period of one year.
Comair will utilise a Boeing 737-800 aircraft, configured for economy and business class, for the weekly Saturday service from Johannesburg to St Helena. Under the new arrangement, on one Saturday in four, the service will be extended to include a flight from St Helena to Ascension Island. This flight will take approximately two hours, with an overnight stay on Ascension Island. The flight will then depart Ascension Island on Sunday morning for St Helena Airport – and then on to Johannesburg OR Tambo International Airport.
AIG is grateful for the strong support given by Governor Mark Capes, Executive Council, Enterprise St Helena and officials on St Helena.
Governor Capes said:
“I am delighted to confirm that we plan to extend the Comair service to Ascension. A direct link between Ascension and St Helena will benefit Saints on St Helena, Ascension and the Falklands. It will allow families to stay in touch, Saints to continue to take up employment opportunities across the South Atlantic and it recognises the close ties between the two islands, which of course form part of one Territory. This is good news for St Helena, for Ascension Island and for the wider South Atlantic Community.’’
AIG and SHG will be holding detailed discussions with Comair over the coming weeks with a view to formalising a service contract that meets the requirements of both islands. Subject to these discussions, AIG and SHG hope to make a more detailed announcement in the near future.
The air service will be subject to Comair securing the required Government and regulatory approvals and obtaining the specific consents and licences associated with the agreed terms of the service agreement.
An air link between St Helena and Ascension Island will reinforce existing cultural and economic ties, offering fast and easy travel for those wishing to return home to visit friends and family, including from the Falkland Islands.
It will also provide a convenient service to tourists who wish to visit both islands during their time in the South Atlantic, and AIG is working with St Helena Tourism to strengthen a joint tourism offering.
A general Q&A document can be found at www.sainthelena.gov.sh/publications/
9 October 2015