LONDON – On May 18, one of the United States’ largest airlines, United, announced that it has filed an application for nonstop flights between Washington, D.C., and Cape Town, South Africa.
The New Historic Service
The application in question has been filed by United to the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) for three weekly nonstop flights between Washington, D.C., namely United’s main hub Washington Dulles International Airport (IAD) to Cape Town, South Africa, namely Cape Town International Airport (CPT).
If the application is approved by the US DOT, United’s flights will become the first-ever nonstop service between the two major cities.
A route that has been long overdue will benefit government-to-government connections as well as increase communication and commerce between the U.S. and South Africa.
Commenting on the announcement of this new historic service, United’s Senior Vice President of International Network and Alliances, Patrick Quayle, has said:
“From creating new jobs to supporting key civic and aid organizations, United has taken tremendous pride in growing our family and operations in South Africa, and across the African continent.”
“If awarded by the DOT, this historic nonstop service will significantly enhance travel options for consumers, strengthen ties between our country’s legislative and diplomatic epicenters, and benefit thriving travel and tourism industries serving our respective countries.”
This new service would inaugurate on November 17, 2022, and will be operated by United’s state-of-the-art Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner aircraft.
The new service will also provide travelers from Cape Town, up to 55 different cities across the U.S. with United from Dulles, which represents more than 90% of the entire U.S. travel demand to Cape Town.
Not only this, but customers will have the choice of up to a total of nearly 100 worldwide destinations from Dulles, not just inside the U.S.
The new route comes as yet another South African announcement from United, with recently announced that they will be starting services to Accra in Ghana and Lagos in Nigeria.
The route will also complement United’s existing service between New York’s Newark Airport (EWR) to both Cape Town and Johannesburg.
All these new services for United will help them build on their existing close relationships with the Mandela Foundation and BPESA (Business Processing Enabling South Africa), a not-for-profit organization that serves as the main industry body and trade association for Global Business Services within South Africa.
Not only this, but the route will also benefit United’s recently announced partnership with Certified Africa. Certified Africa is a travel and tour company that enables easy access and immersive experiences for people who are wanting to travel to or within Africa.
Their new announcement with United will enable consumers access to customizable experiences that include accommodation, airport pick-up/drop-off, transportation, cultural tours, meals, and guides. Certified Africa will also assist with visas, immunizations, COVID-19 precautions, and travel insurance.
Glenn Hollister, United’s Vice President of Sales Strategy and Effectiveness has said in this announcement:
“This partnership will be welcome news for United customers who are eager to explore Africa but may need a little help creating their ideal itinerary.”
“Certified Africa’s deep expertise and extensive network of local partners made them a great choice for United to work with.”
All in all, this new service, if it does receive approval from the US DOT, will be a significant step forward for both countries, further enabling easier access for customers as well as significantly strengthening their governmental and cultural relationships.