Category Archives: South African Airways

South African Airways gets a government capital infusion

South African Airways Airbus A340-313 ZS-SXE (msn 646) IAD (Brian McDonough). Image: 920715.

South African Airways on October 25, 2017 issued this statement:

1. South African Airways (SAA) welcomes the announcement of a capital injection made by government for the airline on October 25, 2017. The injection will go a long way to stabilise the airline financially and will help restore the confidence of all stakeholders in the operational sustainability of the company.
2. In order to turn its fortunes around, SAA had approached its shareholder with a request for recapitalisation of R13.1 billion over three years. The announcement today means that a total amount of R10 billion has been allocated to SAA in the current financial year. For the period ending 30 September, the airline received R5.2 billion.  Of this, R2.2 billion was used to settle a maturing loan with Standard Chartered in July 2017 and another R700 million was paid to Citibank in September this year as part of the agreed payment plan and R1.2 billion was used towards working capital requirements.  The funds remaining out of the R5.2 billion are ring-fenced to enable SAA to meet its payment plan with Citibank and to cover working capital requirement and/or partially settle the domestic lenders. Out of the remaining R4.8 billion, 60% will be used to partially pay the local lenders and the remainder of the funds will be used as working capital.
3. SAA is aware and sensitive to the reality that the allocation comes at a time when government faces a number of demands competing for resource allocation. This calls for departure from a mundane flight path, work with urgency towards bringing more shareholder value, and become financially sustainable in the shortest time possible.
4. The implementation of SAA’s turnaround plan must switch to a higher gear and reassure through results, all stakeholders that the airline is on course towards financial sustainability.
5. Both the lenders and the shareholder have imposed strict conditions, increased oversight and demand more accountability from the airline.  The conditions imposed include revalidation of the turnaround plan and implementation thereof within specific time frames, appointment of mission-critical personnel (including a permanent Chief Executive, Chief Financial and Chief Restructuring Officers) as well as compliance on all governance issues. In addition, four other executive management positions will be advertised this weekend. Furthermore, National Treasury last week announced new appointments to strengthen the current SAA board of directors.
6. SAA has made significant headway in meeting the requirements set out by the shareholder and its lenders. The company has no intention to falter on the remainder of the conditions.
7. SAA is implementing some major initiatives as part of its remediation to improve financial performance and optimise operational performance. The airline has already announced its network changes and other milestones will be announced as the turnaround plan is implemented.
Copyright Photo: The Airbus A340-300s are now likely to be replaced sooner with any reorganization. South African Airways Airbus A340-313 ZS-SXE (msn 646) IAD (Brian McDonough). Image: 920715.
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South African Airways takes delivery of its first Airbus A330-300

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South African Airways (SAA) has taken delivery of its first of five new leased A330-300 widebody jetliners, becoming Airbus’s first Southern African operator of the aircraft type.

The pictured A330-343 F-WWKT became ZS-SXI (msn 1745) when it was handed over to the carrier on December 1, 2016.

SAA’s A330-300 are configured in a comfortable two-class cabin layout with 46 seats in Business Class and 203 in Economy class seats.

SAA has selected the latest 242-ton Maximum Take-Off Weight (MTOW) variant of the A330-300, which incorporates a new aerodynamic packages enabling the aircraft to cover distances of up to 6,350 nautical miles (11,750km) in flights up to 15 hours in duration. This payload/range capability allows the aircraft to be deployed across SAA’s long-haul, intra-Africa and peak domestic routes.

Photo; Airbus.

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Air China announces a new code share agreement with South African Airways

Air China (Beijing) has announced a code share agreement with South African Airways (Johannesburg) that will enable SA to put its code on CA’s newly inaugurated nonstop service between Beijing and Johannesburg as well as points beyond Beijing to Chengdu, Shanghai, Hangzhou and Chongqing.

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Air China will in turn put its code on SA’s services between Johannesburg to Cape Town, Durban and Port Elizabeth. The code share arrangement will open for sale from August 25, for travel effective October 29, 2015.

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Both airlines are Star Alliance members, an alliance offering a network unlike any other; with 28 member airlines providing over 18,500 flights a day to over 1,330 destinations in more than 192 countries around the world.

The flights, CA867/8 Beijing – Johannesburg are to be operated on Tuesday/Thursday/Sunday (outbound) and on Monday/Wednesday/Friday (inbound). The outbound flight departs from Beijing at 23:15 Beijing time, and arrives in Johannesburg at 7:35 local time on the following day. The inbound flight departs from Johannesburg at 11:50 local time and arrives in Beijing at 7:30 Beijing time. The flights are to be operated with Boeing 777-300 ER aircraft.

Copyright Photo: AirlinersGallery.com. Air China’s Boeing 777-39L ER B-2006 (msn 44931) in the special “Love China” livery taxies at London (Heathrow).

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South African Airways celebrates the inaugural flight from Washington Dulles to Accra, Ghana

South African A340-600 Accra inaugural at IAD (SAA)(LR)

South African Airways (SAA) (Johannesburg) continues to expand its West African network and celebrated its inaugural flight between Washington (Dulles) and Accra, Ghana, on August 3, 2015.

Flight SA 209 from Accra arrived at Washington Dulles International Airport at 6:05 AM and flight SA 210 departed at 5.40 pm under a ceremonial water cannon salute (above).

Both flights were operated with Airbus A340-600 aircraft, featuring 42 full-flat 180 degree beds in Premium Business Class and 275 seats in Economy Class.

Celebrations at Washington Dulles Airport included local Washington, D.C.-based Ghanaian drummers and dancers, who performed at the boarding gate for SAA’s first passengers departing to Accra and representatives from the Ghanaian Embassy, the South African Embassy, the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority and Destination D.C.

With the introduction of this new flight, SAA is providing the only nonstop flight between Washington D.C. and Ghana, as well as the only Skytrax 4-Star rated airline service and world-class quality from North America to the entire West Africa region. South African Airways also offers convenient connections from over 50 markets in the U.S. and Canada through its airline partners United Airlines, JetBlue Airways, American Airlines and Virgin America via Washington, D.C.-Dulles.

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South African Airways’ flights to Accra are available four days a week with continuing service to Johannesburg, South Africa, operating on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday. SAA also provides nonstop service from Washington D.C.-Dulles to Dakar, Senegal and onwards to Johannesburg, three-times per week, operating on Wednesday, Friday and Sunday.

This new route is part of South African Airways’ continued expansion in North America, where the airline is the only carrier to offer daily nonstop service from New York -JFK International Airport to Johannesburg, South Africa.

Photo: South African Airways.

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South African resumes nonstop Johannesburg-New York JFK flights

South African Airways (SAA) (Johannesburg) has resumed nonstop service on its daily flight from Johannesburg to New York-John F. Kennedy International Airport, effective March 7, 2015. While SAA’s daily flight from New York-JFK to Johannesburg has operated on a nonstop basis for several years, the return flight was making a 1-hour enroute stop in Dakar, Senegal, during the low season winter months. Due to the popularity of this route, SAA’s service between New York and Johannesburg will, once again, operate nonstop in both directions on a year-round basis. The resumption of the nonstop service on the northbound flight from Johannesburg to New York-JFK reduces the overall travel time on the route by nearly 90 minutes, making it the fastest way to travel from South Africa to New York.

SAA’s flights between New York-JFK and Johannesburg are operated on wide-body Airbus A340-600 aircraft, featuring 42 full-flat 180° beds in Premium Business Class and 275 seats in Economy Class.

Copyright Photo: Jay Selman/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A340-642 ZS-SNI (msn 630) arrives at JFK International Airport in New York.

South African Airways aircraft slide show: AG Airline Slide Show

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New videos from Boeing

Powering an aircraft could soon be a sustainable endeavor. Fuel cell technologies being explored by Boeing use a fusion of hydrogen and oxygen to help power aircraft electricity, produce heat, and provide clean water.

The 777 Signature Interior continues to be preferred by passengers because of its spaciousness and ability to accommodate many unique configurations. Airlines continue to be creative in curating new experiences for their passenger. See a sampling of the unique configurations available on today’s 777.

Less than six months after Boeing and South African Airways (SAA) announced their plans to turn “energy tobacco” into sustainable aviation biofuel, farmers in South Africa’s Limpopo province are harvesting their first crop of a nicotine-free, energy-rich tobacco plant.

Thanks to our automated drilling system, the Flex Track, we can manufacture the 777 in a safer, more efficient and more flexible way.

South African Airways to resume nonstop Johannesburg-New York JFK flights

South African Airways-SAA (Johannesburg) will resume its daily nonstop flights between Johannesburg, South Africa, and New York-JFK International Airport, on March 7. The resumption of the nonstop service on the northbound flight from Johannesburg to New York-JFK will reduce the overall travel time on the route by nearly 90 minutes.

While SAA’s flight from New York-JFK to Johannesburg is operating daily on a nonstop year-round basis, the northbound flight has been temporarily making a one-hour refuelling stop in Dakar, Senegal, due in part to lower travel demand during the winter months. The nonstop flights in each direction are timed conveniently to connect in Johannesburg with SAA’s extensive route network in Southern Africa of over 55 destinations and in New York with flights to over 35 cities in the U.S. and Canada through our code share partners JetBlue Airways, United Airlines and Air Canada.

SAA’s flights between New York-JFK and Johannesburg are operated on Airbus A340-600 aircraft, featuring 42 full-flat 180-degree beds in Premium Business Class and 275 seats in Economy Class, ergonomically designed with adjustable headrests and industry-leading legroom of up to 34″ for long-haul travel. Customers traveling in both Premium Business Class and Economy Class enjoy an extensive menu of on-demand audio and visual entertainment options, freshly prepared meals and complimentary bar service featuring award-winning South African wines.

In other news, is the flag carrier technically bankrupt? According to the AFK Insider:

“The country’s state carrier, South African Airways (SAA), has been struggling to keep its fleet in the skies with a crippling debt of $1.5 billion and has had to receive a couple of state sponsored bailouts, including a recent 6.5 billion rands ($560 million) guarantee to keep liquidators off its back. This adds to a 5 billion rands guarantee already in place for the Treasury.”

Read the full report: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Paul Denton/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A340-642 ZS-SNF (msn 547) approaches the runway at the Johannesburg hub.

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