US airline, Delta Air Lines is to continue serving one of its longest-haul routes to Johannesburg with the Airbus A350 following its decision to retire the Boeing 777 by adding Cape Town to its route, stopping in the Mother City to refuel.
According to The Points Guy (TPG), a site publishing hands-on advice on travel experiences, the announcement was made by Delta president, Glen Hauenstein, during a virtual town hall meeting.
“The airline’s South Africa service will follow a new circular routing that goes: Atlanta-Johannesburg-Cape Town-Atlanta,” said Hauenstein.
“The stop will allow for refueling at sea level before beginning the 8,130-mile trek back to the U.S.”
He added that this is a win-win for Delta and travelers with the airline continuing to serve Johannesburg and add tourist-popular Cape Town to its map.
“Passengers flying from Johannesburg would stop in Cape Town on the way back to Atlanta, but Delta would not be able sell tickets solely on the domestic South Africa leg without special accommodation from the government.”
Hauenstein also said they were very confident that there was nothing they were flying back before the crisis that they cannot fly in the future with A350 equipment.
He however did not say when the Cape Town flights will begin and Johannesburg flights resume with South Africa remaining largely closed to international arrivals.