On the 19th of March 2011 a No-Fly-Zone over Libya was implemented by United National Security Council Resolution 1973, which began being enforced by a multinational military coalition. This No-Fly-Zone closed airports throughout Libya (despite the Libyan Gov’t propaganda that continued to list its airports as operating semi-normally) and shut down the operations of Libyan airlines.
Now, more than a month after the Libyan No-Fly-Zone was established and the nation’s airlines were grounded, one Libyan airline has curiously reinstated portions of its online marketing …
… while Afriqiyah Airways‘ has maintained its website (with the exception of Sabre having removed their booking engine), the airline has once again begun to offer airfare specials. Visitors to Afriqiyah Airways’ website, www.afriqiyah.aero, are now greeted with a large promotional image at the top of the reading “fly from europe to Johannesburg, start from just : 111€ ex tax,” and those visiting the airline’s British website are greeted wit a number of rotating airfare specials to destinations throughout Africa.
While other special offers on the airline’s main website are out dated, they were out dated prior to the No-Fly-Zone being implemented, however the current promotional fares were recently added only days after Libya’s other major state owned airline Libya Airlines changed the launch page of their website to “Libya Airlines – Temporarily Unavailable.”
As Afriqiyah Airways is wholly owned by the Libyan Government, are the airlines’ new promotional airfares intended to be propaganda or are these new promotions a sign that the company is hopeful they’ll soon be flying again? Either way, it is interesting to see an established airline offering airfare promotions it knows it cannot deliver upon due to circumstances well outside the company’s control.
Hopefully we’ll see Afriqiyah Airways flying again in the future and offering airfare promotions it can readily deliver on.
Below are screen shots of the Afriqiyah Airways’ primary website and its British website from today, the 30th of April.