Zambia’s Got Its First Budget Airline!

Zambia’s on fire, people. And not in the bad way.



Zambia has made a name for itself in the last ten years, as a high quality wildlife destination and one that is particularly good for walking safaris.  Intimate (and often rustic) bushcamps, excellent local guides, beautiful  scenery and varied game and birdlife are the trademarks of a safari in Zambia. Not to mention the fact that they have worked so hard to protect their most prized resource: Their animals. If you are interested in planning an African Safari you can read our recent article here.

zambia safari

zambia safari

There are more natural reserves here than just about any other African nation. The Luangwa Valley, Lower Zambezi and Kafue National Parks are the highlight of the wildlife circuit, because of their intense wildlife.  The South Luangwa has a great deal of choice for some great walking safaris, with a diverse selection of bushcamps that range from fun and rustic to chic and luxurious.  The North Luangwa is for those that want a very wild walking experience, where roads and people are scarce.  For birders or those who like to venture into the wilds, Bangweulu and Kasanka fit the bill.  Victoria Falls is a must-see for anyone.

the falls

the falls

Due to the effects of the rains on the park infrastructure, much of Zambia has a short season that runs from June to October.  Certain Zambia safari lodges in the South Luangwa stay open for part of the rainy season – a dramatically different and exhilarating experience.  Livingstone and the Falls are open all year round but you’ll get very wet, so its better to go in the spring and summer.  And now that Zambia is going to have its own airlines things will be a lot easier as far as air travel.

zambian airlines

zambian airlines

Over the past ten years there has been a 60% increase in arrivals of regional and international air carriers to the Republic of Zambia. Tourists from all over the world are coming back again and again because of the low crime and abundant beauty and now finally Zambians will be able to reap a bit of that reward. Mukuba Airlines, said to be the southern African nation’s first budget carrier.

great people

great people

In a press statement, a company official said the airline will be operational within a few months, in time for the United Nations World Tourism Organisation’s General Assembly conference, to be held in Zambia in August.

Commenting on the “record numbers” of regional and international travelers in Zambia in recent years, Mukuba Airlines chairman and chief executive officer Mwansa Chalwe said the airline would target domestic travelers first.

map of africa

map of africa

Zambians have been left “as spectators in their own country” according to the article, which also stated that Mukuba Airlines would “demystify and democratize air travel and emulate emerging economies like Brazil, India, Indonesia and others that have extended air travel to those who have never flown before, including domestic workers.”

They’re following in Ryan Air’s footsteps- pretty smart. They’re easing the flow of people in and out and making it affordable. Yeah, I wish SwissAir would try that.



Mukuba Airlines will be based in the Zambian city of Livingstone, near the tourism center of Victoria Falls. It will operate French-built ATR 42-500 and ATR 72-500 turbo-prop aircraft.

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