fastjet has won Africa’s Leading Low-Cost Airline Award at the 23rd Annual World Travel Awards held in Zanzibar, Tanzania.

The globally recognised World Travel Awards set out to acknowledge, reward and celebrate excellence across all key sectors of the travel tourism and hospitality industry.

The award, voted for by travel and tourism professionals and consumers worldwide, is in recognition of the carrier’s services of making air travel more affordable, safe and reliable across its pan-African network.

“Being recognised and accepting this award not only reflects our commitment to air-travel excellence, but the impact we endeavour to make on the African continent,” says Jai Gilbert, Head of Marketing at fastjet. “We are immensely proud to receive such high industry recognition and fastjet will continue to make low-cost air travel accessible to more people on the African continent.”

The low-cost airline was launched in November 2012 and has several domestic routes in Tanzania from Dar es Salaam to Mbeya, Mwanza and Kilimanjaro. Fastjet’s network also services the route from Dar es Salaam and Zanzibar, and between international destinations such as Johannesburg, Harare, Victoria Falls, Entebbe, Nairobi and Lusaka.

The company expects many of its passengers on the routes it services to be first time flyers who, because of prohibitively high fares, could previously not afford to travel by air.

Supporting this statement is recent research undertaken by the airline, showing that up to 40% of passengers on all routes were first time flyers able to afford air travel for the first time, thanks to affordable fares.

Also available for purchase on fastjet’s route is a luggage upgrade option, ‘Freighty’, that allows passengers to transport up to 80kg of checked-in bags for US$80. The Freighty luggage option, in particular, has been popular with traders flying with fastjet to purchase wholesale produce internationally to transport back to their home markets to sell.

This award adds to fastjet’s growing collection of accolades, with the airline winning the Transport Innovator Award at the eighth Transport Africa Awards 2015 last year, as well as being named the cheapest low-cost carrier in Africa by flight comparison site WhichAirline.com in 2014.