By Ronald Musoke
Kenya Airways and MTN Uganda have partnered to provide a new payment option that allows customers to pay for Kenya Airways tickets using the mobile money service.
Building on their experience in the home market (Kenya), the initiative is part of the airline’s efforts to embrace technological advancement in the mobile and ICT sector to improve and simplify customer experiences.
Speaking at the launch on Aug.28, the airline’s Head of Information Systems Development, Henry Obare said the Mobile Money Payment option has registered success in Kenya.
He expressed optimism that the Uganda market will equally adjust to the ease and convenience that comes with the use of MTN Mobile money transfer services.
With the new option now available to pay, customers will visit the Kenya Airways’ website or call its offices to make a reservation and obtain a reference number and fare quote in Uganda Shillings.
The customer will then use their phone’s Mobile Money pay option, enter short code KQ, reference number and amount to be paid.
On receiving of the transaction real-time, the airline will email the air ticket back to the customer. There is also another option of collecting the ticket at any of the Airline’s offices worldwide.
Obare said the airline has been at the forefront in embracing advancements within the mobile and ICT sector to enhance the customer experience.
“We not only focus on offering an excellent in-flight experience for our customers but also on making the entire end-to-end journey right from the purchase of the tickets to the handling at destination airports pleasant,” he said.
The MTN Uganda Chief Marketing Officer, Ernst Fonternel, welcomed the partnership with Kenya Airways adding that it is a new addition to a number of other partners with whom MTN Mobile Money is working.
Fonternel said since the launch of the service five years ago, MTN Mobile Money has enjoyed unprecedented success, registering in excess of 25m transactions each month with more than 4.5 m customers active on Mobile Money.
“As per the GSMA 2012 Global Mobile Money adoption survey, MTN Uganda ranks second in the world in terms of number of active Mobile Money customer accounts… As we launch this partnership with Kenya Airways, I’m hopeful that the Airline customers will find MTN Mobile Money an easy, convenient, safe and secure service” Fonternel said.
Kenya Airways flies five times every day between Uganda’s Entebbe International Airport and its hub in Nairobi, and serves over 45 African destinations, having launched its 61st destination to Blantyre in Malawi this month.