delta a350

As airlines retreat from markets around the world, Delta is bucking the trend with good news, announcing a new route to Cape Town. For those in the USA seeking sun, fun, adventure and a lovely glass of Pinotage, the news couldn’t be better for one of the most sought after, but frustrating places to reach.

Delta’s New Cape Town Route

Delta Airlines is taking a clever approach to Cape Town, by tagging it onto the airlines preexisting service from Atlanta, Georgia USA to Johannesburg, South Africa, which will be serviced by an Airbus A350-900. The plane features Delta’s best “Delta One” business class suites, in addition to Premium Select in premium economy and improved Main Cabin experience in economy.

Why clever? Because retirement of the Boeing 777 means the airline won’t have a plane capable of flying full loads between Atlanta and Johannesburg in both directions, due to winds on the return when the plane retires in 2020.

a map of the world with a red line is a great tool to find flight distances.

By adding a short hop from Johannesburg to Cape Town in between, the airline is able to cut the distance short enough for the return based on the shorter distance between Cape Town and Atlanta, than Johannesburg and Atlanta. For the nerds out there: Atlanta – Johannesburg clocks 8,439 miles, while Cape Town – Atlanta clocks in at 8,130 miles. Cape Town and Johannesburg are 790 miles apart, as the crow flies.

The flight will go like this: flight from Atlanta to Johannesburg, stop unload cargo, passengers etc, short hop from Johannesburg to Cape Town, stop, unload passengers etc, and then flight back to Atlanta in the good ole’ USA.

When Does Delta’s Cape Town Flight Take Off?

Delta, like most airlines in the world is currently in a bit of a holding pattern as to international air service. With any hope, the flight will relaunch in 2020 and will initially be serviced by a Boeing 777, until its retirement. We’ll update this article when tickets are on sale, because who couldn’t use a little Cape Town right now?

HT: OMAAT, Cape Town ETC

Gilbert Ott

Gilbert Ott is an ever curious traveler and one of the world's leading travel experts. His adventures take him all over the globe, often spanning over 200,000 miles a year and his travel exploits are regularly...

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  1. More importantly, CPT is lower in altitude so the plane can carry more ppl and cargo than if it were to leave from JNB

  2. I think altitude is also a factor. Johannesburg at 5,700 feet, reduces the load the plane can take off with : less fuel, less cargo or less passengers Are required to deduce weight. Taking a short hop to Cape Town at sea level allows full load of fuel, cargo and passengers.

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