Category Archives: Airlink

Airlink to return to St. Helena on March 26

The scheduled Airlink service will recommence on Saturday, March 26, 2022, with fortnightly flights between Johannesburg and St Helena and the monthly inter-Island service with Ascension Island. Additional inter-Island flights have been included during periods of peak demand.

The Airlink flight schedule between March 2022 and January 2023 can be seen below:


Flight No. Date Leg Flight No. Date Leg
131 26 Mar 2022 JNB – HLE 135 26 Mar 2022 HLE – ASI
136 27 Mar 2022 ASI – HLE 132 27 Mar 2022 HLE – JNB
131 9 Apr 2022 JNB – HLE 132 9 Apr 2022 HLE – JNB
131 23 Apr 2022 JNB – HLE 135 23 Apr 2022 HLE – ASI
136 24 Apr 2022 ASI – HLE 132 24 Apr 2022 HLE – JNB
131 7 May 2022 JNB – HLE 132 7 May 2022 HLE – JNB
131 21 May 2022 JNB – HLE 135 21 May 2022 HLE – ASI
136 22 May 2022 ASI – HLE 132 22 May 2022 HLE – JNB
131 4 Jun 2022 JNB – HLE 132 4 Jun 2022 HLE – JNB
131 18 Jun 2022 JNB – HLE 135 18 Jun 2022 HLE – ASI
136 19 Jun 2022 ASI – HLE 132 19 Jun 2022 HLE – JNB
131 2 July 2022 JNB – HLE 132 2 July 2022 HLE – JNB
131 16 July 2022 JNB – HLE 135 16 July 2022 HLE – ASI
136 17 July 2022 ASI – HLE 132 17 July 2022 HLE – JNB
131 30 July 2022 JNB – HLE 135 30 July 2022 HLE – ASI
136 31 July 2022 ASI – HLE 132 31 July 2022 HLE – JNB
131 13 Aug 2022 JNB – HLE 132 13 Aug 2022 HLE – JNB
131 27 Aug 2022 JNB – HLE 135 27 Aug 2022 HLE – ASI
136 28 Aug 2022 ASI – HLE 132 28 Aug 2022 HLE – JNB
131 10 Sep 2022 JNB – HLE 135 10 Sep 2022 HLE – ASI
136 11 Sep 2022 ASI – HLE 132 11 Sep 2022 HLE – JNB
131 24 Sep 2022 JNB – HLE 132 24 Sep 2022 HLE – JNB
131 8 Oct 2022 JBN – HLE 135 8 Oct 2022 HLE – ASI
136 9 Oct 2022 ASI – HLE 132 9 Oct 2022 HLE – JNB
131 22 Oct 2022 JNB – HLE 132 22 Oct 2022 HLE – JNB
131 5 Nov 2022 JNB – HLE 135 5 Nov 2022 HLE – ASI
136 6 Nov 2022 ASI – HLE 132 6 Nov 2022 HLE – JNB
131 19 Nov 2022 JNB – HLE 132 19 Nov 2022 HLE – JNB
131 3 Dec 2022 JNB – HLE 135 3 Dec 2022 HLE – ASI
136 4 Dec 2022 ASI – HLE 132 4 Dec 2022 HLE – JNB
131 17 Dec 2022 JNB – HLE 135 17 Dec 2022 HLE – ASI
136 18 Dec 2022 ASI – HLE 132 18 Dec 2022 HLE – JNB
131 24 Dec 2022 JNB – HLE 132 24 Dec 2022 HLE – JNB
131 7 Jan 2023 JNB – HLE 135 7 Jan 2023 HLE – ASI
136 8 Jan 2023 ASI – HLE 132 8 Jan 2023 HLE – JNB
131 21 Jan 2023 JNB – HLE 135` 21 Jan 2023 HLE – ASI
136 22 Jan 2023 ASI – HLE 132 22 Jan 2023 HLE – JNB



Airlink tickets for the service between Johannesburg and St Helena are now on sale and are available online via the Airlink website at: and through all IATA travel agents.

Ethiopian Airlines enters into an interline agreement with South Africa’s Airlink

Ethiopian Airlines (ET) is delighted to announce that it has signed an interline agreement with Airlink (4Z), an airline based in Johannesburg, South Africa.

Ethiopian has entered into an interline agreement with Airlink to allow passengers to enjoy seamless travel with a single ticket and lower fare tickets between points within the carriers’ synergized networks. With the interline agreements between the two carriers, passengers can book through their itineraries on both airlines easily. The partnership attracts more customers providing ease of connectivity to their destinations served by both Ethiopian and Airlink.

Ethiopian Airlines has been implementing various partnership agreements with African and global carriers to further expand its accessibility to its customers. The partnership with Artlink in particular will increase seamless connectivity options for customers in the regions of South Africa with the vast network of Ethiopian Airlines in the continent and beyond. Ethiopian Airlines connectivity options are crucial in fulfilling the increasing demand of our customers. Ethiopian and Airlink customers will handle each other’s travelers check in and baggage for all their flights with the airlines. Airlink provides services between smaller, under-served towns and larger hub airports. Hence, through the interline agreement signed with Ethiopian, customers from south Africa will benefit from more than 60 African destination of Ethiopian.

United Airlines and Airlink announce a new codeshare agreement

United Airlines and Airlink, a South African airline, announced a new codeshare agreement that will offer customers more connections between the U.S. and Southern Africa than any other airline alliance.

The new agreement, which is subject to government approval, will offer one stop connections from the U.S. to more than 40 destinations in Southern Africa. Additionally, United will be the first airline to connect its loyalty program with Airlink, allowing MileagePlus members to earn and redeem miles when they travel on Airlink flights. This new cooperation will be in addition to United’s existing partnership with Star Alliance member South African Airways.

United has continued to expand its footprint into Africa, with direct service to four African destinations. Earlier this month, United announced flights between Washington, D.C. and Lagos Nigeria will begin November 29, subject to government approval.

Earlier this year, United launched new service between New York/Newark and Johannesburg, South Africa and between Washington, D.C. and Accra, Ghana, which is expected to operate daily this December and January. United’s popular service between New York/Newark and Cape Town, South Africa will also resume on December 1.

This new codeshare will be implemented upon final government approvals

Airlink signs a service agreement with Rolls-Royce for its ERJ 135s

Rolls-Royce and Airlink have signed a TotalCare® service agreement for the AE3007 engines that power the South African airline’s fleet of Embraer ERJ 135 aircraft. The agreement, which covers 28 aircraft, is an extension of service for a further 10 years, continuing the airline’s drive to maximize aircraft availability.

Airlink CEO, Rodger Foster, said; “Airlink and Rolls-Royce have worked hand in hand since the introduction of the ERJ 135 to our fleet in May 2001. We operate 28 ERJs with a pool of 64 AE3007-A1/3 engines. We are proud of the phenomenal reliability we have achieved from these engines which have underpinned Airlink’s industry leading on-time performance, which has consistently been above 97%. Our TotalCare service agreement has been key to the management of engine maintenance costs and to ensuring the economic sustainability of the ERJ135 type for the foreseeable future. We are delighted at the dependability of the Rolls-Royce team and their engines.”

In 2019, prior to the Covid-19 pandemic, Airlink carried more than 2 million customers on more than 63,000 flights. Airlink currently operates a reduced route network to more than 45 destinations in 12 African countries, whilst remaining agile to the effects of Covid-19 and associated travel restrictions. Airlink was proudly the most punctual South African airline for 2020; its year-to-date performance up to August 2021 has been 98.1% on-time.


Emirates and Airlink expand partnership and seal codeshare agreement

Emirates and Airlink have announced the expansion of their existing partnership into a unilateral codeshare agreement, giving travelers to and from South Africa convenient access to more than 40 domestic and regional destinations across 12 African countries.

The extended codeshare provides connectivity to Emirates customers not offered by any other carrier in Africa, and augments the long-standing partnership that Emirates has with South African Airways.

The move comes as Emirates resumes its flights to South Africa and ramps up its operations to provide customers with enhanced connectivity via its gateways Johannesburg, Cape Town and Durban. The connectivity provided by the new codeshare between Emirates and Airlink will offer competitive fares, combined ticketing, and seamless baggage transfers when connecting between both airlines.

Customers traveling to South Africa can now transfer from Johannesburg, Cape Town and Durban to domestic points like Bloemfontein, George, Upington, Nelspruit, Hoedspruit, Kimberley, Skukuza, Pietermaritzburg, Richards Bay, Sishen, Mthatha and Port Elizabeth, as well as points across Southern Africa like Gaborone, Kasane, Vilanculos, Lubumbashi, Dar es Salaam, Entebbe, Maseru, Antananarivo, Pemba, Tete, Maun, Victoria Falls, Walvis Bay, Maputo, Windhoek, Harare, Lusaka, Ndola, Bulawayo and Livingstone amongst many other cities.

Airlink introduces a new independent look

Airlink’s New Tailfeathers Bring Freedom to Southern Africa’s Skies

Airlink, the privately-owned Southern African airline, has revealed its new tail feathers, distinguishing itself as a completely independent carrier.

The new look, which features a distinctively colorful African Sunbird set against a sunrise and dawn sky, follows several recent developments, including the formal re-naming of the company as “Airlink”.  It signifies the airline’s new strategy, as an independent, agile, responsive and financially robust business that is free of any brand association with its former franchise partner, South African Airways.

The new livery will be applied to Airlink’s fleet over the coming months, with the re-painting coinciding with each aircraft’s next scheduled deep-maintenance overhaul. This will avoid disrupting the airline’s operations.   The first aircraft bearing the new colours will resume service in early December, in time for the summer holiday season.

Airlink recently launched frequent daily services on what have historically been South Africa’s (and Africa’s) busiest city pairings; Johannesburg – Cape Town and Johannesburg – Durban in addition to Johannesburg-Port Elzabeth and Johannesburg – East London.  It also inaugurated its first new routes linking Johannesburg with Maputo as well as Johannesburg with Windhoek.   With the phased relaxation of domestic and regional travel restrictions, Airlink has re-started services to all 15 of South Africa’s main economic and tourist centres.   In addition, it is operating to Zimbabwe (Harare and Bulawayo), Zambia (Lusaka, Ndola and soon also Livingstone), Namibia (Windhoek and Walvis Bay), Lesotho (Maseru), Eswatini (Sikhuphe) and Mozambique (Maputo, Pemba, Beira and Vilanculos).  Next week Airlink will resume flights to Botswana (Gaborone, followed next month by Maun and Kasane) and will restart flights to Madagascar in December (Nosy Be, while it awaits the re-opening of Antananarivo.    Flights to St Helena will re-commence as soon as it is permissible.  Airlink also plans to parade its new tailfeathers to several other established and new destinations as they come online over the coming weeks and months.

Route Map:


SA Airline officially becomes Airlink

Airlink, the privately-owned airline, has officially changed its company name from “SA Airlink” to “Airlink”, as part of its strategy to distinguish itself as a totally independent airline.

Earlier this year Airlink ended its 23 year franchise agreement with South African Airways and began operating and issuing tickets on its own “4Z” code and designator. This has liberated Airlink and enabled it to forge commercial ties with other international airlines that carry passengers and cargo to and from destinations across Southern Africa. It has subsequently signed collaborative “interline” agreements with Qatar Airways, Emirates, British Airways, KLM, Air France and United.

Airlink is a privately-owned regional airline serving a comprehensive network of smaller destinations throughout Southern Africa. We are now operating independently under our own unique 4Z flight code offering more freedom, more choices and more travel opportunities. When you see the sunbird icon on our aircraft, think Airlink. You’ll know that you’re travelling with Southern Africa’s largest (measured by flight movements) independent airline. Airlink has more than 50 commercial jetliners operating throughout Southern Africa. Last year we carried 2 million customers on more than 63 000 flights, on 55 routes to 39 destinations in nine African countries and St Helena Island.

Airlink to acquire Safair, the brands will remain separate if approved

Airlink (South African Airlink) BAe RJ85 ZS-SSJ (msn E2385) JNB (TMK Photography). Image: 920116.

Airlink and Safair, two independent South African aviation groups, on Tuesday, November 28, 2017 will apply to South Africa’s Competition Commission for approval to unite under the common umbrella of the Airlink group of companies.

The proposal sees the Airlink and low-cost FlySafair (below) airlines and Safair’s other businesses, including humanitarian aid flights, continuing to operate separately under their unique brands.

Airline Color Scheme - Introduced 2013

Above Copyright Photo: FlySafair (Safair) Boeing 737-4Y0 ZS-JRD (msn 24917) JNB (Rob Finlayson). Image: 928163.

The airlines will retain their respective products, aircraft fleets, management and leadership teams. Employees will be secure with no job losses because of the consolidation.

“Airlink’s acquisition of Safair, which is financially robust and profitable, makes good business sense. It presents opportunities to reduce our combined costs, position ourselves for growth while at the same time increasing connectivity and choice while making air travel accessible and affordable for our customers across Southern Africa,” explained Airlink CEO and Managing Director, Rodger Foster.

“Our combined networks will enable us to connect 37 destinations in nine Southern African & Indian Ocean countries and St. Helena. This will stimulate and enable trade, tourism, economic growth and social development in those markets we serve,” added Foster

“Coming under a single umbrella will create economies of scale that will enable both airlines to share costs, optimise assets and remove systems duplications.  This will position the new Airlink Group for future growth,” said Elmar Conradie, who will remain as Safair CEO.

In addition, the proposed new ownership structure will see Airlink continue to meet – and in future exceed – South Africa’s Broad-based Black Economic Empowerment targets.

The Safair purchase will not affect Airlink’s existing SAA franchise partnership, which continues to deliver traffic and business to SAA and Airlink while their customers benefit from the value, convenience and connectivity the arrangement provides.

As part of its continued commitment to the aviation industry within South Africa, Safair shareholder ASL Aviation Holdings will become a minority shareholder of the Airlink Group of companies.  ASL Aviation Holdings is a global aviation group with 6 European and 2 Asian airlines in addition to its South African interests.

More details will be provided when the Competition Commission has made its determination, which we anticipate will be during Q1 2018.

About Airlink

Airlink was established in 1992 and is the leading regional airline in Southern Africa. It has a route network of 37 destinations in nine African countries and St. Helena..

About Safair

Safair Operations was established in 1965 and has been a leader in the provision of specialised aviation services for the past 52 years. In 2014 the company launched FlySafair, a low-cost carrier competing in South Africa’s domestic market.

Top Copyright Photo: The remaining RJ85s should be replaced and retired by late 2019. Airlink (South African Airlink) BAe RJ85 ZS-SSJ (msn E2385) JNB (TMK Photography). Image: 920116.


Bottom Copyright Photo: Safair Boeing 737-3Y0 (F) ZS-SMJ (msn 23500) SHJ (Michael Stappen). Image: 905778.

Safair Boeing 737-3Y0 (F) ZS-SMJ (msn 23500) SHJ (Michael Stappen). Image: 905778.

Airlink to replace its Avro RJ85s with new Embraer E170s and E190s

RJ85s to be replaced with new Embraer E170s and E190s by 2020

Airlink, Southern Africa’s largest independent regional airline, is joining the E-Jet operator’s family. The airline is acquiring five E-Jets – three E170s and two E190s, from ECC Leasing, a wholly-owned Embraer subsidiary. Airlink will start to receive the aircraft in the first half of 2017.

Airlink already operates a large fleet of ERJ aircraft – last December, the airline started to add 11 further ERJ 140 jets to its fleet. By the end of the fourth quarter of 2017, the airline will be operating 30 ERJs, comprising all three types – ERJ 135, ERJ 140 and the ERJ 145.

Rodger Foster, CEO of Airlink, said, “This is the beginning of the implementation of a well planned growth and modernization strategy for Airlink that includes replacing our current fleet of Avro RJ85s over the next three years. The strategy calls for a total of 13 E-Jets, and we are in the process of sourcing the balance of the fleet requirement – an additional 8 E190s – from the market.”

Copyright Photo: Airlink (South African Airlink) BAe RJ85 ZS-ASY (msn E2316) JNB (Michael Stappen). Image: 906856.



Airlink receives permission to put its 13 Jetstream 41s back in the air

Airlink (Johannesburg) has received government permission to restore to flying status its fleet of 13 BAe Jetstream 41 turboprops.

News link: