Durban - The clock is ticking for out-of-town rugby fans to book their flights to Durban for this weekend's Currie Cup final.
Luane Lavery, Brand Communication Manager for British Airways – operated by Comair – and kulula.com, yesterday told The Mercury that there was a definite surge in load factors for flights, on the Cape Town to Durban route.
“It's clear that rugby fever is strong in South Africa,” Lavery said.
“Most flights are nearly fully-booked.
“We urge rugby lovers travelling for the game to book their flights to avoid disappointment.”
Saturday's final will see the Sharks face Western Province on their own turf – at the Growthpoint Kings Park stadium.
Chairperson of Umhlanga Tourism, Peter Rose, said yesterday that the current economic climate was impacting the local industry but some guest houses, in the north of the city, were almost fully booked for this weekend.
“Others still have a fair amount of space available but by the time the weekend comes, we might have filled it,” he said.
Tsogo Sun KwaZulu-Natal Operations Director, Mike Jackson, said he was looking forward to welcoming Western Province's players to the city.
He said that the team would be staying with Tsogo Sun over the weekend.
A spokesperson for the Sharks said South Africa was a sports loving country.
“And we continually witness the power of sport and what it can do, not only to bring people together, but also to benefit the economy,” she said.
Deputy mayor Fawzia Peer said the city was excited and ready to host the event.
“We welcome everyone and we hope they enjoy the hospitality of our world class city and our friendly and wonderful people,” she said. “We hope that everyone has fun in a safe and responsible manner.”
Peer said events like the Currie Cup final contributed greatly to the local economy, especially in terms of their multiplier effect.
Peer welcomed all visitors to Durban.
“Finally, we wish the Sharks success in the Currie Cup final,” she said.