Air Astana is planning to resume regular flights on its route to Frankfurt Airport in Germany. The resumption will mark the first European route to be regularly serviced by the Kazakh flag carrier since the pandemic forced it to restrict its services.
The height of the pandemic, as far as the impact on aviation, was felt in mid-April. Since then, airlines have been working to reestablish their route networks. This has been easier for domestic and short-haul flights due to some countries being slow to relax travel bans. However, the international web of flights is now slowly growing once more.
Returning to Frankfurt
Air Astana is planning to return to Frankfurt as soon as next week. The airline has said that it will initially operate services four times per week when the route is relaunched. This will hopefully increase to daily from September onwards.
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Given the opportunities created by the current drop in operations at Frankfurt, Air Astana has reworked its flight schedule to the German aviation capital. This means a morning arrival is planned for the foreseeable future. This will give passengers the maximum opportunity to connect onto onwards flights.
According to data from FlightRadar24.com, the flight to Frankfurt is scheduled to be operated according to the following schedule:
- KC921 will depart from Nur Sultan at 05:00, before arriving in Frankfurt at 07:20.
- The aircraft will then remain on the ground in Frankfurt for four hours.
- At 11:20, KC922 will depart from Frankfurt. The flight is scheduled to arrive in Nur Sultan at 21:05.
Lufthansa will codeshare with Air Astana on the flights between Nur Sultan and Frankfurt.
What to expect on the flight
Air Astana will be operating the Frankfurt route with its newest aircraft, the Airbus A321LRs. These variants of the A320neo family have been designed for longer flights, and are kitted out accordingly.
The aircraft seat a total of 166 passengers. The business class cabin at the front of the aircraft will accommodate 16 passengers in lie-flat bed seats. Behind the business class cabin are 150 economy seats in a standard 3-3 configuration.
Flights to Germany
Kazakstan is on the Robert Koch Institute’s list of high-risk countries. As a result, any travelers whose final destination is in Germany will have to undertake a series of extraordinary measures upon arrival.
The German government is currently requiring that all arrivals to the country from high-risk countries take a COVID-19 test. These are already on offer at Frankfurt Airport, thanks to a partnership between Lufthansa and Centogene. The German government is bearing the cost of such tests. However, tests performed in Kazahkstan within 48 hours of departure are also generally accepted by the German government.
Have you flown onboard Air Astana’s new Airbus A321LR aircraft? What did you think? Let us know your thoughts in the comments!