The Cape Town tourism and economic sector has welcomed yesterday’s news of an additional seasonal service by Virgin Atlantic – between the Mother City and London, Heathrow – noting that this aligned well with Cape Town International Airport’s infrastructure investment plans.
“Connectivity forms part of my departmental strategy to connect Cape Town with key destinations in Africa and globally,” said City of Cape Mayoral Committee Member for Economic Opportunities and Asset Management, James Vos.
The additional service (to launch on October 25) will add a total of 80 000 seats between Cape Town and London during the high season.
“A key driver of growth is the aviation economy and a core outcome of the recently adopted Tourism Development Framework is air connectivity,” said Vos.
He said reliable and efficient airport infrastructure formed the backbone of the travel and trade sector, noting that Cape Town International Airport (CTIA) had already contributed R4.7 billion (€2.9 billion) to the South African economy and supported over 43 000 direct, indirect and induced jobs.
Vos pointed out that the expansion of CTIA, costing R7 billion (€4.3 billion) over the next five years, would see the construction of a new realigned runway, the refurbishment of the domestic arrivals terminal and the expansion of the international terminal.
“This investment will allow the airport to increase the flight capacity from 30 take-offs and landings per hour to 45. This will provide the perfect opportunity to secure yet more direct connections for passengers,” he said.