BA to DUR from OCT.Back to Forum
I’m excited about this route – finally able to connect my current home with where I grew up in Durban… There are interesting timings on the flight outbound, that I think I will use. The return leg being a day flight – I’m not sure about, traditionally the night flight is the preferred for SA/European flights.8 May 2018
Why has it taken so long for BA to introduce this route?
I remember reading a few years ago that the demand was something like 350.000 passengers per annum (almost 1000 per day!!!). This is more than enough to make a route viable.
Look at these figures from November 2014 (anna.aero)….
If you cannot, at present, get a decent shower in Cape Town, then Durban is more than an equal to CT.
Surely it will be a big money maker.8 May 2018
Why has it taken so long for BA to introduce this route?
In fact BA is restarting a route which both it (and its predessors like Imperial Airways and BOAC) operated years ago.
The delay in restarting could be down to aeropolitics. As we all know SAA is scarce of both money and aircraft to compete effectively with its international rivals.8 May 2018
As someone who flies from Manchester to Durban once or twice per year, and who lived there in the 1980s this is an interesting and long awaited development. Historically, Natal was and still is well populated with British ex pats, so there ought to still be a good market for visitors to their relatives. As a commercial city Durban is up there with Cape Town, so there should be business traffic too.
I think however that the stereotypical business class traveller is not necessarily a businessman(woman). On recent Air France business flights to Johannesburg, there appears to be more couples and leisure travellers happy to pay extra for the comfort and service provided.
This should put Natal on the Northern Hemisphere winter holiday map. No longer is the trip going to be 15/16 hours with the hassle of changing at Johannesburg, as I expect 11 hours will be the flying time. This now makes it an accessible winter destination. The new airport King Shaka is easy to navigate and getting a hire car and being in your hotel room can all be done in under 1 hour.
Those of the BT readers who have read comments about violence, need to consider that there is little reported crime against tourists. Durban beachfront is well patrolled, however the City Centre after dark is perhaps an area to be wary off.
Most SA local tourists head to Umhlanga Rocks, Umdloti Beach and Ballito, all within 30 minutes drive of Durban Airport. There are also fine beach resorts on the Natal South Coast around Margate and Ramsgate. Lovers of Art Deco buildings are in for a treat in Durban.
The Drakensberg mountains have lots of well appointed hotels and provide a great contrast to the beach resorts. Most are 2 to 3 hour drives from Durban.
The cost of living is well below UK and Northern Europe, so should make for affordable trips for all.8 May 2018
BA did have a direct service many years ago and I used to use it. So did Swiss I recall and a few other airlines.
The only International carriers now serving Durban are Emirates and Qatar and I believe they have good load factors as people seek to avoid the hassle of JNB and the long queues caused by all this Biometric capturing business. Then from DUR you can fly to many other popular tourist destinations for the same fare as from JNB.
Personally I think BA are re-instating this route to try and take from EK and QR the pax they are losing to those carriers, and hope a non-stop will be more attractive to the passenger and to BA in revenue terms.9 May 2018
The cost of living is well below UK and Northern Europe, so should make for affordable trips for all.
I agree with your post Bluemooner, but sadly not the above. South Africa is becoming expensive, especially with a strengthening Rand (or is it weaker sterling)? 4 and 5 star hotels are on a par with Europe cost wise, and even AirBnB and budget hotels are not much cheaper than the equivalents here. There is also food inflation which has seen prices rise exponentially especially for meat and anything imported. There is also this habit of increasing prices by 10% each year even if inflation is below that and wages are certainly not increased by that amount – especially at the lower end of the scale.
Over the last 7 years I’ve seen levies on one of our properties rise from R. 1500 a month to over R.3000 while the Swiss Franc (my reference currency) going from chf 10 to the Rand to only CHF 12.50
Casual labour is still very cheap as are internal airfares (not SAA though) and petrol is much cheaper than Europe especially considering a certain element goes towards what we would call here third party liability.
Alas gone are the days when you could have a full English breakfast for a rand!9 May 2018
LP…spot on! Prices in SA have skyrocketed in the last couple of years….there is so much greed around now! It won’t be long before there is a Big Bang to bring the greedy merchants back into the real world.
Even Woolworths (MnS) have delusions of grandeur. Their food prices have gone through the roof. The price of their clothing is unbelievably high….and poor sweatshop quality.
Yup….it certainly isn’t a cheap place to holiday any more. It’s ok if you have your own place, but even then, the cost of running it has doubled in two years. Well somebody has to feed the corruption….and it’s the likes of us. Little will change sadly…its Africa…and expensive.9 May 2018
I agree Openfly. I usually buy my chinos, socks (the ones with the coloured end) and shorts from Woolworths which are the same as sold by M&S. M&S is actually cheaper now than Woolies, though M&S don’t sell the Boer shorts I love to wear – though not in Europe 😉 😉 I now buy my cheeses from Checkers, half the price and the same quality. Ironically, the small red grapes I buy, from the same producer are also cheaper in Italy and they’ve traveled 10,000 kms!
Now to add a travel element to our chuntering – PAYG is much cheaper than Switzerland. I use Vodacom and use it also when roaming in Europe and the US, as it’s only R. 5 a minute, or less than half the price of Switzerland. data is also cheap so I’d suggest to our fellow readers, if paying yourself get a PAYG card there.9 May 2018
@LP….I’m Vodacom PAYG as well, but hadn’t realised that it was cheaper. Not for long now they know!!!?
I think the PAYG have to be cheaper due the massive local low-pay market. I’m sure they will find a way of penalising the more affluent. The house phone is amazingly cheap for international calls.10 May 2018