Cape Town 19 December 2016, Cape Town International Airport (CTIA) welcomed the arrival of Thomas Cook Airlines’ inaugural flight from London Gatwick Airport (LGW) to Cape Town. Thomas Cook Airlines, a leading UK leisure airline will now offer direct flights between LGW and CTIA three days a week.
Deon Cloete, General Manager of CTIA welcomed the arrival of Thomas Cook Airlines saying, “Cape Town International Airport is delighted that the carrier is now offering direct routes from London Gatwick. South Africa’s ‘Mother City’ offers it’s warmest welcome to Thomas Cook Airline’s passengers ‒ Cape Town is consistently rated as one of the world’s number one tourist destinations and at CTIA we aim to offer travellers a top class passenger experience.”
Thomas Cook Airlines’ inaugural flight departed the UK from London Gatwick at 19:30 pm on 15 December, and arrived in Cape Town at 09:00 am on the morning of 16 December. Owing to the seasonal dry weather and associated water shortages at this time of year in the Western Cape, the aircraft was treated to a “dry-salute” with the Airport’s fire engines lining either side of the runway, flickering their lights as the flight landed.
Thomas Cook Airlines has rolled out the following flight schedule: Mondays: arriving at CTIA at 6:30 am and departing for LGW at 09:00 am; Tuesdays: arriving at CTIA 11:30 am and departing for LGW at 19:20 pm; Fridays: arriving at CTIA at 09:20 am and departing for LGW at 19:20pm
James Burrows, Aviation Director for Thomas Cook Airlines, added, “Cape Town is an enormously popular destination for UK tourists and Thomas Cook Airlines is excited to be able to offer our clients the convenience of affordable direct flights from London Gatwick to Cape Town International three times a week.”
Over the past year, in spite of global economic conditions, visitors to Cape Town passing through CTIA increased year on year. In 2015, total annual passenger numbers rose 10.3% from the previous year, reaching 9.7 million. For the 2016 year to date, total passengers are up a further 7.2% against the comparative period last year.
“With the festive season and tourists seeking the Southern hemisphere sunshine, December and January account for around 18% of CTIA’s total annual passenger traffic. With more airlines now adding new direct routes to Cape Town, we are expecting another bumper holiday season this year,” said Cloete.
Cape Town International Airport is an award-winning airport, consistently performing among the best in the world for service in its category. This year SKYTRAX awarded CTIA as the Best Airport in Africa for 5-10 million passengers, and it currently has a Global Ranking of 22nd in the World’s top 35 Airports.