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United Airlines Applies to Launch First-Ever Direct Service Between Washington Dulles and Cape Town

United Airlines has filed an application with the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) to launch historic first-ever nonstop service between Washington, D.C. and Cape Town. If approved, the carrier plans to operate three weekly flights on the route from November 17th.


United Airlines Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner - Courtesy United Airlines

On Wednesday (May 18, 2022), United Airlines announced that they have filed an application with the U.S Department of Transportation (DOT) to operate three weekly flights between Washington-Dulles International Airport (IAD) and Cape Town, South Africa. If approved, the route will be the historic, first-ever, direct service between Washington, D.C. and Cape Town, benefiting government-to-government connections and commerce. United’s proposed service is scheduled to begin on November 17, 2022 and will operate with a Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner. The new service will provide seamless one-stop connectivity to Cape Town via Dulles from 55 U.S. cities.

In Wednesday’s announcment, United’s Senior Vice President of International Network of International Network and Alliances, Patrick Quayle, said,


“From creating new jobs, to supporting key civic and aid organizations, United has taken tremendous pride in growing our family and operations in South Africa, and across the African continent. If awarded by the DOT, this historic nonstop service will significantly enhance travel options for consumers, strengthen ties between our countries legislative and diplomatic epicenters, and benefit thriving travel and tourism industries serving our respective countries.”


United’s Washington Dulles hub offers over 230 daily flights to nearly 100 global destinations, including service to more than 10 world capital cities, and new service to Accra, Ghana and Lagos, Nigeria. Customers traveling to Cape Town will also enjoy seamless onward connectivity with United’s partner Airlink to destinations in South Africa and other countries in the southern region of the continent.


Aerial View of Cape Town, South Africa - Courtesy United Airlines/PRNewswire

United Airlines’ shared purpose is “Connecting People. Uniting the World.” In 2019, United and United Express® carriers operated over 1.7 million flights carrying over 162 million guests. United Airlines operates the most comprehensive network among North American carriers with mainland U.S. hubs in Chicago, Denver, Houston, Los Angeles, New York/Newark, San Francisco and Washington, D.C. Shares in the company’s parent, United Airlines Holdings, Inc., are publicly traded on the NASDAQ under the symbol ‘UAL.’



Source: United Airlines/PRNewswire

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