Delta is continuing its expansion into sub-Saharan Africa with its announcement of three-times weekly service from Atlanta to Luanda, Angola, via Dakar, Senegal (that’s quite a mouthful, isn’t it?). I keep mentioning Delta’s growing route network in Africa because, although it’s not yet at Pan Am’s footprint in Africa, it marks the largest US airline presence in Africa since Pan Am.
And, from what I can tell, this marks the first scheduled service from a US airline to Angola (Atlas Air runs a thrice-weekly nonstop charter flight from Houston to Luanda dubbed the “Houston Express” for oil industry folks, but that’s not really a scheduled passenger operation).
Also worth noting that although Delta has killed plans for a mini-hub in Cape Verde, they are using Dakar and Accra as stopping points for onward flights within Africa. God knows the regulatory issues, but it wouldn’t be surprising to see them move African continuing flights to Dakar since it can be served with a 757 from New York, allowing them to build out a hub-type situation there (even if no origin/destination traffic is allowed).
In any case, Africa needs as many commercial flights as possible – this is another great piece of news for the continent.