United Airlines to launch first nonstop flight between North America and Cape Town, South Africa

United Airlines plans to begin nonstop flights between Newark, New Jersey, and Cape Town, South Africa, in December.

The new route, which requires government approvals, will be the industry’s first nonstop flight between North America and Cape Town and marks the airline’s return to Africa after a three-year absence.

Travelers headed to Cape Town from the United States on any airline currently have to make a stop in Europe.

United says its new nonstop flight, on a Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner, will shave hours off travelers’ trips to and from Cape Town. The southbound flight is scheduled for 14½  hours, the return about 16 hours. At 7,817 miles, it will be the airline’s sixth longest route.

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