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Fly540 (Five Forty Aviation Ltd) is a low-cost airline based in Nairobimarker, Kenyamarker. It operates domestic and international passenger and freight services.


The airline started operations between Nairobimarker and Mombasamarker on November 24, 2006. The service initially operated twice daily using 48-seat ATR 42 aircraft. The airline's name refers to its price of Sh5,540 per adult return fare between the above-mentioned cities .

Lonrho Africa is a major investor in the company, paying US $1.5 million for a 49 % stake.

In May 2007 the airline introduced two Bombardier Dash 8 Q100 aircraft to increase the airline's capacity, allowing it to develop new domestic routes. Passenger numbers rose by 93 % to 171,160 in the year ended 30 September 2008, from 88,571 in 2007. At the same time, the load factor amounted to 63 %, down from 65.8 % in 2007.

Pan-African Ambitions

The original scheduled flights included – except for freight flights – scheduled passenger traffic between Nairobi and Mombasa, while Kisumumarker became a destination in January 2007. Daily flights on the Nairobi-Malindimarker-Lamumarker route were further added to its domestic services in February 2007 .

International operations commenced in October 2007 by flying to Jubamarker in Sudanmarker and Gomamarker in DR Congomarker , Entebbemarker was added in February 2008. The Nairobi hub plans for additional expansion to Rwanda, Mozambique and Burundi in 2009. The company's ambition is to become a pan-African carrier, through an expansion to an additional two regional hubs:
"...we will open up Kigalimarker and then head to West Africa. Ghanamarker will be the hub for West African region. In Southern Africa, we shall use Angolamarker as our hub, so it will become a pan African low cost airline".
It received it authorisation to start operations in Angola in April 2009. The initial plans include domestic flights to Cabinda, Luandamarker, Soyomarker, Benguelamarker, Huambomarker and Malanjemarker, but an expansion within the region will take place as soon as the domestic market has proven its success . In June 2009, it was reported that Fly540 was working to set up a regional franchise in Zimbabwemarker .


As of June 2009, Fly540 has the following destinations :


The Fly540 fleet includes the following aircraft (as of January 2009):

In January 2008, the company signed a US$ 150 million contract for eight ATR 72-500s to delivered in 2008 and 2009..

Accidents and incidents

On 13 August 2008, a Fokker F27-500 cargo aircraft crashed about from the Namber Konton airport near Mogadishumarker, Somaliamarker. All three crew members died. The aircraft was said to be carrying a shipment of khat. The plane had departed from Wilson Airportmarker in Nairobi. Its registration number is 5Y BVF

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