British Airways launches direct flights between London and Durban

British Airways has launched a direct, non-stop flight between London’s Heathrow Airport and Durban’s King Shaka International Airport.

The route will begin flying a three times weekly schedule from 29 October 2018, with the new Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner being used for the trips.

According to the KZN department of tourism, there are currently some 100,000 passengers who travel between Durban and the United Kingdom every year, with this new route set to tap directly into this latent demand.

“British Airways has already indicated that inward-bound forward bookings are looking extremely good and that this has been welcomed by the local tourism and business sector, which is predicting a boom this holiday season,” said Phindile Makwakwa, acting chief executive of Tourism KZN.

“The impact of the introduction of new air services has already delivered dividends for the people of the province of KwaZulu-Natal, but at the same time, the growth of the international passenger market in KwaZulu-Natal indicates to us that there is still a largely untapped and growing market within the province.”

Terence Delomoney, GM of King Shaka International, said that the Durban-to-London route will make an important contribution not only to growing passenger numbers but also to enhancing the international status of King Shaka International Airport as a hub for economic growth in the region.

“Our passenger numbers have risen steadily in recent years with an average increase of 8% a year over the last three years,” he said.

“King Shaka International Airport handled some 5.6-million passengers during the 2017/2019 financial year, and we are forecasting that we will handle 5.9 million passengers by the end of the current financial year; we are confident that we will see more growth in the coming years.”

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British Airways launches direct flights between London and Durban