South Africa draw set to boost private charter demand
Global aircraft charter specialist Chapman Freeborn is reporting high demand for passenger charters to Johannesburg and other South African destinations ahead of next summer's World Cup.
The company, which has over 30 offices worldwide, opened a South African operation last month in response to large numbers of requests for executive jet and larger commercial aircraft charters.
Demand is expected to further increase once fans from the 32 teams know which cities will be hosting them following the draw in Cape Town later today (December 4)
Around 400,000 football fans are expected to descend on the country during the tournament, presenting both challenges and opportunities for the travel industry worldwide.
Lizane Albers-Mostert, Chapman Freeborn's business development manager for South Africa, said:
"We're receiving charter requests from supporters' groups, corporate sponsors and media partners as the buildup begins to next summer.
"South Africa has never staged an international event of this size, so it's going to be a major test for the country's aviation infrastructure."
South Africa's Civil Aviation Authority has implemented a number of additional aviation coordination and security measures to ensure the safe and orderly flow of traffic within the vicinity of host cities like Cape Town, Port Elizabeth, Durban and Johannesburg.
Arrival and departure slot coordination will be implemented at additional airports within South Africa, and temporary restricted airspace will be created above and around match venues to ensure security.
Prices for chartering a private jet from London to South Africa start from around 80,000 GBP return, based on a stay of 4 - 10 days. Typical features on super midsize and heavy jet types include luxurious stand-up cabins, galley for hot gourmet food, optional flight attendant, onboard toilet and generous luggage space.
Smaller, more economical aircraft including turboprops and light jets are also likely to prove popular for internal flights between group games in South Africa.
In addition to small private aircraft, Chapman Freeborn's services also includes commercial aircraft charters for tour operators and travel agents looking to move larger groups of supporters, ranging from 19 - 500 plus passengers.
Chapman Freeborn has 32 offices in 22 countries - including World Cup qualifying nations such England, France, Netherlands, Spain, Italy, Germany, Portugal, USA and Brazil. The company coordinated more than 5,000 aircraft charters last year.