Cape Town gets direct flight link to Botswana's Okavango Delta

2016-03-18 13:06 - Selene Brophy
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Cape Town - Airlink has commenced operating direct services between Cape Town and Maun, gateway to Botswana’s Okavango delta.

The service started On Friday 18th March 2016 and currently operates 5 times a week, Monday, Wednesday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Flights will depart Cape Town at 10:35 and arrive in Maun at 13:05. The return flight departs Maun at 13:35 and arrives back in Cape Town at 16:10.

Botswana was recently named the number 1 place to visit in 2016 by Lonely Planet, which also happens to the 50th celebration of the country's independence. 

Airlink said the route would appeal to travellers who want to combine a city experience in Cape Town with a Botswana bush safari, but allow them to take advantage of the shortest possible travelling time. The airline intends on increasing capacity on the route from August 2016 for its peak season. 

"This new Airlink service offers travellers the opportunity to enjoy breakfast in their Cape Town hotel before embarking on their journey, arriving in time for a game drive and dinner at their lodge destination. For travellers to Cape Town, after their safari experience, the direct Maun – Cape Town flight will have them in their hotel in time to enjoy sundowners and watch the sun set over the Atlantic or on Table Mountain," the airline said.

Airlink also operates daily services to Botswana between Johannesburg (ORTIA) and Maun, as well as Johannesburg (ORTIA) and Kasane. Airlink’s other regional routes include Livingstone – Nelspruit/Kruger, Kruger - Cape Town, Johannesburg- Kruger, Johannesburg – Skukuza and Skukuza – Cape Town.  

The route highlights the drive to increase direct flight capacity to the city. In February Wesgro officially launched Cape Town Air Access - aimed international air route development in the Western Cape, said to be a collaboration between the Western Cape Provincial Government, the City of Cape Town, Airports Company South Africa (Acsa), Cape Town Tourism, Wesgro and the private sector.

The primary mandate of the air access team is to promote, develop and maintain air routes in and out of Cape Town International Airport through ensuring the success of existing routes, increasing frequencies and capacity and new route establishment.

Cape Town International Airport is the perfect candidate for this development. The SA hub saw a 14.4% increase in African air arrivals, and a 5,6% growth in overseas arrivals during 2015, despite the overall tourism numbers for SA in 2015 dropping 6.8%. 

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