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Russian carriers S7 Airlines and Aeroflot are set to start flying to Casablanca as part of plans to expand their travel destinations, Routes Online reported.
“Flights to Casablanca’s Mohammed V International (CMN) will begin on April 30 before switching to a Sunday service from May 9. The route, which will be S7’s first to Morocco, will be operated using Boeing 737-800s,” the report announced.
It added, “The airline will become the second carrier to serve DME-CMN this summer alongside fellow oneworld alliance member Royal Air Maroc. Morocco’s flag-carrier currently provides 2X-weekly flights, set to increase to 3X-weekly in June.”
Besides S7 Airlines’s Moscow-Casablanca route, Aeroflot is also said to be planning a direct line between Moscow and Agadir. The second Russia-Morocco route may launch in early June, said the report, noting that “flights will be 3X-weekly and 1X-weekly respectively on board 737-800s.”
The Russian carriers appear to be betting on Morocco’s status as a prized tourism destination. Routes Online’s projections are that, by early July this year, flight travel capacity between Morocco and Russia could jump to “2,570 two-way weekly seats,” up from 1,400 in the same period in 2019.
Meanwhile, the news comes amid abetting fears over the COVID-19 crisis and ongoing pandemic-induced travel restrictions.
Russia is currently not on the list of countries that Morocco has suspended travel with, and the two Russian carriers hopes are that this will remain the case – or even improve – as the epidemiological situation in both Morocco and Russia is set to stabilize in the coming weeks in light of the two countries’ vaccine rollout.
Still, the report concluded, PCR tests will remain a key feature of traveling for the foreseeable future. “To fly to Morocco, travelers from Russia will need a certificate with a negative PCR test for COVID-19 valid for no more than 72 hours in English, Arabic or French. Upon returning to Moscow, it is also necessary to take a test.”