SA to welcome inaugural flight between New York and Johannesburg following COVID-19 travel restrictions

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Transport Minister, Fikile Mbalula, and Tourism Minister, Mmamoloko Kubayi -Ngubane, will officially welcome the United Airlines’ inaugural flight between New York and Johannesburg on Friday.

United Airlines is one of the United States’ dominant domestic and international carriers.

The direct flight from Johannesburg to New York will be the first for the airline after COVID-19 travel restrictions.

South Africans are still restricted from entering America without government approval.

The airline remains confident it can service the route due to a growing number of vaccinated people in both countries.

However, vaccinated Americans can travel to South Africa without having to comply with quarantine restrictions.

Aviation expert, Linden Birns, says the presence of the airline in South Africa is a huge confidence boost for the country.

“United is the first long haul carrier to add Johannesburg to its route network since before the pandemic. It’s also the first to reconnect South Africa to the US and it’s the only carrier to provide a daily service between Johannesburg and New York. The inaugural flight will be met this afternoon by the Transport and Tourism Minister as well as senior diplomatic representatives from the United States. And the Airports Company CEO. ”