MAUN: Tourism operators in Maun have welcomed South Africa’s Airlink commencement of direct flights between Cape Town and Maun. Airlink started the Cape Town service on March 11, 2016.
Kagiso Senwedi, manager of Delta Air that undertakes scenic flights over the Okavango Delta, said the route makes it cheaper for tourists to connect Maun and Cape Town directly. Senwedi said Cape Town, which is marine tourism hub and Maun, the getaway to the Okavango Delta, are two self-complementing hubs.
African Excursions managing director, Sammy Mokgadi expressed the same sentiments. He observed that the route used to be operated by Air Botswana which however stopped flying between the hubs. “This is a welcome development. It will save tourists the hassle of connecting Maun and Cape Town via Johannesburg.
Mokgadi said he believes the route will increase visitations from Cape Town and vice versa.
Airlink connected the Okavango Delta to Cape Town by starting direct flights between the South African city and Maun. They currently operate five times a week, Monday, Wednesday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday. The airline says they intend to add additional flight days as the destination moves into its peak
Airlink is a regional South African domiciled operation in franchise with South African Airways and its Star Alliance Partner Airlines, servicing 36 destinations across nine African countries.
Airlink also operates daily services to Botswana between Johannesburg and Maun as well as Johannesburg and Kasane. These are combined with Airlink’s other regional routes such as Livingstone–Nelspruit/Kruger, Kruger-Cape Town, Johannesburg-Kruger, Johannesburg–Skukuza and Skukuza–Cape Town.
The company says travellers planning their Southern African adventure are able to take advantage of this unique flexibility to achieve the shortest journey time, the opportunity to maximise their time spent experiencing each stay at a destination and minimal travelling time, truly maximising experience and minimising the hassle of transiting and time spent in airports.
Maun, the gateway to Okavango, is emerging as an important aviation hub for regional and international cross-border travellers visiting Zambia, Zimbabwe, Namibia and Botswana. Currently Maun is connected to Johannesburg, Gaborone, Windhoek and Victoria falls in Zimbabwe.