KLM Royal Dutch Airlines is forced to temporarily suspend service between Amsterdam and Abidjan, Ivory Coast, effective February 3, 2003. Owing to political unrest in the West African state, traffic to and from Abidjan has dropped sharply, while KLM faces higher costs as it is forced to make an intermediate stop in Accra, Ghana.
Load factors declined sharply on the three weekly round-trips between Amsterdam and Abidjan after political strife broke out in Ivory Coast in September. The round-trip is normally operated nonstop in both directions. However, due to the risky situation in the Ivory Coast, it was no longer safe to let crews stop over in Abidjan. KLM therefore decided to introduce an intermediate landing and crew switch in Accra, on the return flight to Amsterdam. However, this presents passengers with a less attractive flight schedule and KLM with higher operational costs.
Until February 3, 2003, KLM will continue to serve passengers who have already booked flights to and from Abidjan. After that, the service will be temporarily suspended, initially until the end of the winter schedule on March 29, 2003.
This schedule change will be implemented in reservations systems effective today.