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RwandAir Clients Book Via SMS

Prospective travellers with RwandAir in Rwanda and Burundi can now access the airline's flight schedule via short text messages sent directly to their mobile handsets.
The service has been available since Wednesday last week with all telecom operators in Rwanda and Burundi, according to RwandAir's Corporate and Communications Manager Michael Otieno. "The service is for the convenience of a traveller. You just do it for checking the flight schedule," Mr. Otieno said Thursday in a telephone interview.
To access the flight schedule on your mobile, a customer types the word RwandAir [space] destination and sends to either 123 on MTN Rwanda or 7333 on Tigo Rwanda when in Rwanda. Otieno said RwandAir wants to make the service available to other destinations where it flies.
The service will be available in Uganda in two weeks time with all the telecom operators, he said. South Africa, Tanzania and Kenya will also follow in a month's time. Currently, when one buys a RwandAir ticket is also asked to provide a telephone number and email for future use.
The airline plans to have a database of contacts of its customers and will be sending them text messages and emails about the flight schedules. RwandAir will also finalise its internet based booking engine by end of November to facilitate online booking.
The airline is in talks with the operator of the online booking engine to create a possibility where customers could use their mobile phones to book flights, Otieno said. RwandAir serves all East African community capital cities with daily flights and it flies to Johannesburg, South Africa five times a week.
The airline currently has a fleet of two Boeing 737-500, two Bombardier CRJ and a Dash 8 with two Boeing 737-800 joining the fleet in 2011.

Source: East African Business Week

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