Demand for Cape Town flights grow despite water crisis

6 months ago written by

Despite Cape Town running out of water soon, the popularity of the city has been further underscored with the news that Singapore Airlines (SIA) will be increasing flight frequency to meet growing travel demand.

Cape Town will be served with a daily flight via Johannesburg, up from the current four flights per week, with effect from 26 March. The additional flights will complement SIA’s current daily service to Johannesburg and operate as SQ478 (Singapore – Johannesburg – Cape Town) and SQ479 (Cape Town – Johannesburg – Singapore).

Meanwhile Eyewitness News reports the chronic drought could leave Cape Town without water within weeks and this will hurt visitor numbers. Experts predict the city will run out of water in mid-April and residents may now only use 50 litres per person per day. An average bath holds 80 litres of water.

Hotels have asked guests not to use baths -and many have removed both plugs from bathrooms. Tourism officials advise guests to limit showers to two minutes or less, while some restaurants are switching to disposable cups and ditching table linen.

Tourism accounted for an estimated 9 percent of South Africa’s economic output last year, or R412 billion. Though visitors are sympathetic to Cape Town’s plight, there are fears that people may stay away due to the inconvenience of water restrictions or because they don’t want to add to demand.

Despite these fears Singapore Airlines say there remains a growing demand to visit the city. The UK based Business Travel News reports DIA will  operate flights to Cape Town and Johannesburg using its Airbus A350-900 aircraft. The aircraft seats 253 customers in three classes, with 42 in Business Class, 24 in its relatively new Premium Economy Class and 187 in Economy Class.  Premium Economy seats have 38in pitch (compared to a 32in pitch in standard economy), at 18.5-19.5in wide with an 8in recline. They also feature a 13.3in high-definition touchscreen LCD monitor and a Book-the-Cook Service.  The airline has now completed the introduction of 21 Airbus A350 and awaits the delivery of its first Boeing 787 Dreamliner over the coming months.

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