Quietly on the West Coast of Africa things are happening. A new hub airport is emerging that provides real hope of long-term continuity in a part of the world that has for many years offered so much promise.
In the last five years, Casablanca and Royal Air Maroc have developed a very tightly structured hub facility connecting many points in Europe with both the major and secondary markets in Africa; that have always proven so challenging for many airlines. Mixing established ethnic traffic flows with unique city pairs unserved by others, Casablanca is now a major connecting point ranking fifth on the African continent but number one in the West Africa region and catching up on some of its rivals.
Casablanca enjoys a great geographic advantage, providing linkages to most major markets within a four-hour sector length which in turn makes single aisle jet operations with the B737 very attractive for Royal Air Maroc. A mix of local and connecting demand provides a solid base of year round traffic and with longer haul services to North America, Brazil and the Middle East, the future looks good for both airline and airport. It’s not quite Panama and COPA but in its own way Casablanca is equally as successful.
Include the rapid growth of Marrakech into a popular short break market from Europe with a range of low-cost airlines serving the destination, then Morocco really does look to have secured a firm position in the West African market. Perhaps it really is time to play it again Sam!