Do­mes­tic air­lines of­fer­ing fares at rea­son­able rates

Au­dreyD’An­gelofinds rea­son­ablypriced­lo­calflights this­month

Weekend Argus (Saturday Edition) - - TRAVEL 2010 -

FORE­CASTS that l ocal f l i ghts would be crammed with vis­i­tors from over­seas, send­ing fares sky-high, and ac­com­mo­da­tion fully booked in all the cities host­ing games, caused most busi­ness travel in this coun­try to be post­poned this month.

But in the event many of the vis­it­ing fans seem con­tent – at this stage any­way – to stay in the cities they orig­i­nally chose as a base and watch the games in other places on the TV.

And, with­out the nor­mal busi­ness travel at this time of year, do­mes­tic air­lines are of­fer­ing fares at very rea­son­able rates on their web­sites, of­ten com­bined with pack­age deals with ho­tels and guest houses in the coastal towns ea­ger to fill empty rooms. So, if you are not among those who opted to leave the coun­try while the World Cup is on, but would like a break in a lo­cal re­sort, par­tic­u­larly while your chil­dren are on ex­tended school hol­i­days, now is the time to see what is avail­able.

Mean­while, the num­ber of for­eign fans who have ar­rived so far seems higher than some pes­simistic fore­casts in the past few weeks sug­gested, al­though t he l argest num­ber have opted to stay in Gaut­eng, where most of the games are tak­ing place. But we have a par­tic­u­larly large con­tin­gent of 5 000 fans from Brazil, who have taken over the Protea Fire and Ice ho­tel in the city cen­tre and the South­ern Sun at the Water­front.

Calvyn Gil f el l an, chi ef ex­ec­u­tive of re­gional tourism mar­ket­ing author­ity Cape Town Routes Un­lim­ited, dis­cov­ered on a visit to Brazil that Brazil­ians like to stick to­gether over­seas, but also want to meet the lo­cals, so Sea Point Civic Cen­tre and the L ook­out a t t he Wa­ter f r ont have been turned into meet­ing places where they can watch the games on TV. But lo­cal peo­ple are wel­come to join them in Sea Point af­ter 6pm to en­joy en­ter­tain­ment, i nclud­ing dancers in car­ni­val cos­tumes, with Brazil­ian food avail­able. There is an ad­mis­sion charge for lo­cal peo­ple.

Emi­rates Air­lines, which flies daily into Cape Town and al­ready op­er­ates 10 of the gi­ant Air­bus A380 air­craft, has or­dered 32 more in ad­di­tion to the 58 al­ready on or­der. This will make it by far the biggest op­er­a­tor of this air­craft. With so many in the pipe­line it can­not be long be­fore we see it in use at Cape Town which, with Jo­han­nes­burg, is al­ready ca­pa­ble of han­dling it. It is now in reg­u­lar use by Air France on its sched­uled flights be­tween Jo­han­nes­burg and Paris. Lufthansa, which used it to bring the Ger­man soc­cer team to this coun­try for the World Cup, will use it on sched­uled flights be­tween Frank­furt and Jo­han­nes­burg from Oc­to­ber.

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