Why Kenya’s aviation industry would suffer without Wilson Airport

Wilson Airport

Historically, Wilson Airport is the home of aviation in Kenya, having been in operation since 1927.

Photo credit: Shutterstock

Kenya is home to world-class venues for conferences, corporate retreats, workshops and seminars. With a robust aviation industry providing easy access to any location, flights can be made to different parts of the country that offer perfect destinations for major conferences, travel and events.

Also, the country’s enchanting locations are ideal incentive destinations for smart companies seeking to periodically reward their employees for exemplary performance.

Nairobi’s Wilson Airport is a key player in this.

A plane taxing for take-off at Wilson Airport.

The airport is a modern hub of general aviation in East and Central Africa. Its traffic constitutes 90 per cent domestic flights, with international trips accounting for the remaining 10 per cent.

Flights from Nairobi’s Wilson Airport take passengers and goods to different parts of the country, mostly Mandera, Lokichoggio, Lodwar, Wajir, Kitale, Garissa, Isiolo, Nanyuki, Eldoret, Kisumu, Migori, Maasai Mara, Lamu, Malindi, Mombasa, and Ukunda. The flights that go beyond Kenya’s borders, are often destined for Tanzania’s Kilimanjaro International Airport, and Zanzibar.

Historically, Wilson Airport is the home of aviation in Kenya, having been in operation since 1927. It is therefore just four years short of celebrating a century.

Formerly established as Nairobi West Aerodrome, it was later renamed in honour of Lady Wilson Kerr Florence, whose airline company had helped influence its founding.

Wilson Airport is at the heart of Nairobi City, a fast and convenient gateway connecting travellers to the rest of Kenya. Bordering the Nairobi National Park, it connects the country to its rich magical heritage. The airport serves and supports tourism, agriculture, and healthcare sectors, among others. It is currently the gateway to the Kenyan Tourism Circuit, including the famous Maasai Mara National Game Reserve.

Wilson Airport is the only one in Kenya with an aviation club – the Aero Club of East Africa and host to air shows. Home of Amref Flying Doctors, the airport regularly supports medical emergencies. Other NGOs use it as the connection hub for humanitarian activities.

The airport is home to more than 400 private aircraft owners in Kenya, operating scheduled and unscheduled flights. It is also the leading infrastructure for helicopter operations, serving VIPs, the police, research entities, other security agencies, tour firms, wildlife organisations, and disaster response agencies, among others.

Wilson Airport

A Kenya Airforce helicopter at Wilson Airport in Nairobi on Saturday, June 13, 2020.  

Photo credit: Dennis Onsongo | Nation Media Group

The airport hosts several aircraft maintenance organisations (AMOs), and has 32 hangars.

Additionally, Wilson Airport significantly supports the future of the aviation professional development; what with the 15 approved training schools that are domiciled here.