SA tourism minister welcomes Emirates flights increase
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CAPE TOWN - UAE-based airline Emirates' announcement to expand its operations in and out of South Africa, boosting the country’s tourism sector, has been welcomed by Tourism Minister Lindiwe Sisulu.
The airline will increase its schedule to 28 weekly flights from October.
This is the airline’s largest weekly schedule to South Africa since the start of the pandemic.
The ramp-up in operations will see double daily flights to Johannesburg, including the introduction of Emirates’ A380 on one of the daily flights, in addition to daily services to both Cape Town and Durban.
“This is a big boost to our tourism industry and it will see more people travelling for both leisure and business,” Sisulu said.
“We will in the same vein as the department accelerate the establishment (of) the National Air Access Committee to support airlift service development across the country,” said Sisulu, adding the Emirates reinvestment in the route came at a good time as South Africa was recently nominated to serve on the executive council of the UN World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO).
The UNWTO is the UN agency responsible for the promotion of responsible, sustainable and universally accessible tourism.
Tourism in South Africa accounted for 2.9% of the country’s GDP and the industry supported about 1.5 million direct and indirect jobs.
In terms of requirements to travel to the UAE, South African travellers visiting Dubai must present a negative Covid‑19 PCR test certificate with a QR code issued within 48 hours of collecting the sample at an approved local health facility.
Travellers to Dubai must also present a Rapid PCR test report with a QR code for a test conducted at the departure airport within six hours of departure.
Passengers arriving in Dubai will be required to take another Covid‑19 PCR test on arrival at Dubai International airport. All passengers transiting in Dubai would have to complete all the requirements of their final destination.