Category Archives: South African Airways

South African to sell nine Airbus A340s

South African Airways Airbus A340-642 ZS-SNI (msn 630) JFK (Fred Freketic). Image: 944355.

South African Airways (SAA) has put some of its aircraft up for sale to accommodate the new Airbus A350-900s the airline recently added to its fleet.

In a tender on the airline’s website, SAA said it was selling nine wide-body aircraft – – five Airbus A340-300s and four Airbus A340-600s – – and 15 spare engines and four Auxiliary Power Units, a device used to provide energy.

Copyright Photo: Antony J. Best.

After we received the four new Airbus A350-900, it has become necessary for us to sell our older models to accommodate the new models with superior features such as the quieter cabin, relaxing in-flight environment and more extra-legroom seats in economy class and lie-flat beds in business Class,” said Zuks Ramasia, SAA’s Acting CEO.

“The decision to sell the aircraft has nothing to do with the business rescue process. For some time we had planned to replace our four-engine aircraft with new generation and more efficient aircraft as part of our fleet renewal programme,”  said Ramasia.

“When we received five A330-300s in late 2017- early 2018 we had already planned to retire five A340s at that time, but due to the operational fleet undergoing maintenance, the retirement of the aircraft was postponed.  Now is the time to sell the aircraft,” she said.

Ramasia said with the new A350s which will start operating on its international route network next week, replacing the A340s has become possible. The closing date for the tender is January 30, 2020 at 11.00 am SA time.

The aircraft on sale used to operate on regional and international routes, which will now be flown by the A330s and A350-900s.

Note: The remaining Airbus A340s are now likely to be retired in 2021.

Top Copyright Photo: South African Airways Airbus A340-642 ZS-SNI (msn 630) JFK (Fred Freketic). Image: 944355.

South African Airways aircraft slide show:

South African’s Airbus A350-900 operates first international flights to and from New York

South African Airways (SAA), a Skytrax 4-Star rated carrier, has introduced the most technology-advanced aircraft available for international ultra-long- haul travel with the launch of its new Airbus A350-900 on nonstop flights between New York John F. Kennedy International Airport to Johannesburg O.R. Tambo International Airport starting January 20, 2020. The A350-900 aircraft will be featured on SAA’s service on the New York route operating six (6) days per week through March 31, 2020 and resuming daily service on April 1, 2020.

“This inaugural flight was the first that we plan to introduce on our international routes in the near future.  We are excited that our passengers will enjoy the A350s superior features such as a quieter cabin and relaxing in-flight experience including the all-new In-flight Entertainment (IFE), extra-legroom seats in Economy Class and lie-flat beds in Business Class,” said Zuks Ramasia, SAA’s Acting CEO.

The aircraft, which is environmentally friendly, with improved fuel-efficiency can fly further than any other aircraft in commercial service. It is one of the four new Airbus A350-900s that SAA added to its fleet in October 2019.  It replaces the Airbus A340-600, which was being used on the route.

“All the A350-900s are equipped with Rolls-Royce Trent XWB engines. Since entering service in 2015, the Trent XWB engines have flown more than five million hours, and are now regarded as the world’s most efficient large aero-engines.

“The introduction of the A350s will contribute to our operational efficiencies and cost reduction, and forms part of the ongoing fleet renewal programme.

“For example, through the A350s, we will lower our operational costs, and save on our fuel consumption by 25% and also lower our maintenance costs by 40% over a five-year period,” said Ramasia.

South African aircraft photo gallery:

 

South African consolidates select domestic flights and flights to Munich

South African Airways (SAA) is in the process of consolidating selected domestic flights between the airline’s main hub, Oliver Tambo International Airport Johannesburg (JNB) and Cape Town (CPT), as well as between Johannesburg (JNB) and Durban’s King Shaka (DUR) airports.

SAA is working closely with its sister airline, Mango, to re-accommodate passengers on alternative services operated by both airlines to minimise disruption, and thereby ensure passengers reach their destination as quickly as possible.

The following domestic flights operated by SAA have been cancelled:

Johannesburg (JNB) – Cape Town (CPT)

SA303                  Depart 0530      Arrive 0735       Dates: 20, 21 & 24 January

SA307                  Depart 0700      Arrive 0905       Dates: 21 January

 

Cape Town (CPT) – Johannesburg (JNB)

SA316                  Depart 0820      Arrive 1015       Dates: 20, 21 & 24 January

SA322                  Depart 0950      Arrive 1145       Dates: 21 January

 

Johannesburg (JNB) – Durban (DUR)

SA527                  Depart 0630      Arrive 0735       Dates: 20, 21, 22 & 23 January

SA543                  Depart 0955      Arrive 1100       Dates: 20, 21, 22 & 23 January

SA571                  Depart 1655      Arrive 1800       Dates: 20 & 21 January

 

Durban (DUR) – Johannesburg (JNB)

SA534                  Depart 0805      Arrive 0910       Dates: 20, 21, 22 & 23 January

SA550                  Depart 1130      Arrive 1235       Dates: 20, 21, 22 & 23 January

SA578                  Depart 1840      Arrive 1945       Dates: 20 & 21 January

On the international network, SAA is cancelling selected services between Johannesburg (JNB) and Munich (MUC). SAA will re-accommodate passengers on its services between Johannesburg (JNB) and Frankfurt (FRA) as well as London Heathrow (LHR). Some passengers travelling to Munich, and others travelling via Munich to other destinations, will be re-accommodated for some of their journey on partner airlines in the Star Alliance to minimise delays.

The following flights have been cancelled:

Johannesburg (JNB) – Munich (MUC)

SA264                  Depart 2115      Arrive 0700       Dates: 20, 21, 22, 23 & 24 January

Munich (MUC) – Johannesburg (JNB)

SA265                  Depart 2030      Arrive 0820       Dates: 21, 22, 23, 24 & 25 January

These decisions are in line with SAA’s usual policy of reviewing flights and consolidating services with low demand. Furthermore, during the current process of Business Rescue, these cancellations represent a responsible strategy to conserve cash and optimise the airline’s position ahead of any further capital investment.

The consolidation on the Cape Town route is also necessary as SAA has been operating training flights for pilots on the new state-of-the-art Airbus 350-900 aircraft on this route, before transferring the new planes to international routes.

The introduction of these larger aircraft has resulted in temporary surplus capacity on the route.

SAA will be reviewing further possible flight schedule amendments over the coming days. Any operational changes will be communicated to our travel trade partners and customers at the earliest opportunity and passengers will be re-accommodated on other airlines wherever possible.

South African Airways to enter into “business rescue”

South African Airways Boeing 737-844 WL ZS-SJS (msn 32632) JNB (Christian Volpati). Image: 948484.

South African Airways (SAA) is today (December 5) in a position to announce that the Board of Directors of SAA has adopted a resolution to place the company into business rescue at the earliest opportunity.

 

As previously announced, the SAA Board of Directors and the Executive Committee have been in consultations with the shareholder, the Department of Public Enterprises (DPE), in an effort to find a solution to our company’s well-documented financial challenges.

 

The considered and unanimous conclusion has been to place the company into business rescue in order to create a better return for the company’s creditors and shareholders, than would result from any other available solution.

 

Furthermore, the company is seeking to minimize the destruction of value across its subsidiaries and provide the best prospects for selected activities within the group to continue operating successfully.

 

SAA understands that this decision presents many challenges and uncertainties for its staff. The company will engage in targeted communication and support for all employee groups at this difficult time.

 

SAA will endeavour to operate a new provisional timetable and will publish details shortly. The company greatly appreciates the continued support of both its customers and partners in the travel industry around the world.

 

The Board of Directors will also announce the appointment of business practitioners in the near future, and provide media updates as and when appropriate.

 

It is important to point out that services operated by SAA’s subsidiary airline, Mango, will continue as usual and as scheduled.

 

ISSUED BY SAA BOARD OF DIRECTORS

Top Copyright Photo: South African Airways Boeing 737-844 WL ZS-SJS (msn 32632) JNB (Christian Volpati). Image: 948484.

South African aircraft slide show:

Unions end their strikes against South African, airline restores full service

South African Airways has issued this update:

South African Airways (SAA) is pleased to announce that the airline will be restoring a full flight schedule in stages over the weekend.

This process has been made possible following the agreement reached to resolve the ongoing industrial dispute between SAA and the coalition between the National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (NUMSA) and the South African Airways Cabin Crew Association (SACCA) unions.

In practical terms, this means that SAA will operate a near normal service on Saturday, November 23, 2019. Whilst there will be selected cancellations, principally on the domestic network and on a small number of regional flights, the airline expects to be able to provide service to all customers.  Any customers requiring re-accommodation on a rescheduled service or on another airline will be contacted accordingly or assisted at their departure airport.

On Sunday, November 24, 2019, SAA expects to operate its full schedule as usual. This means that SAA will operate services as usual on all three of its networks: domestic, regional (points on the African Continent) and international.

“We are delighted to be able to announce a resumption in normal schedules. On behalf of SAA, I would like to express our deep regret at the inconvenience caused to our loyal customers during this industrial dispute. We will continue to assist those passengers, that have still not been able to travel, to reach their intended destination as soon as possible,” said Philip Saunders, SAA’s Chief Commercial Officer.

“At the same time, I would like to express our commitment to return to the skies with renewed passion and energy to serve all our customers. We also thank our airline partners, Mango, Airlink and SA Express, for assisting us during this difficult period,” Saunders added.

South African Airways aircraft photo gallery:

South African suspends services to Hong Kong, resumes some strike-impaired services

South African Airways (SAA) has announced the suspension of all services between Johannesburg and Hong Kong from Saturday, November 23, 2019 until and including, December 14, 2019.

This decision has been taken to curb significant financial losses incurred on the route, exacerbated recently by the ongoing political tensions in Hong Kong.

In other news, South African Airways (SAA) has also announced its intention to resume selected flights from Johannesburg to Cape Town, Durban and Victoria Falls, with effect from Thursday, November 21, 2019.

SAA is continuing to operate all international flights on an ongoing basis and without disruption. The airline is now also successfully operating services to six destinations on the African continent, namely Accra, Lagos, Lusaka, Maputo, Windhoek and Harare on an ongoing basis.

SAA would like to record its appreciation for those staff deciding to work despite receiving threats and intimidation from the unions. It is clear that SAA’s people are increasingly determined to put our customers first.

South African Airways cancels flights today and tomorrow due to a strike

Delivered on December 1, 2016

South African Airways (SAA) made this announcement for today and tomorrow:

South African Airways operations affected by industrial action. SAA has cancelled all domestic, regional and international flights for Friday, November 15 and Saturday, November 16.

Additionally it issued this statement:

South African Airways (SAA) regrets to advise all customers that we been served with notification by the South African Airways Cabin Crew Association (SACAA) and the National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (NUMSA) of their intention to embark on a strike effective Friday, 15 November 2019.

It is expected that the strike would cause maximum disruptions to SAA operations; therefore, in the best interest of protecting our customers and their travel plans, we have taken the decision to cancel all domestic, regional, and international flights on Friday 15 November 2019 and Saturday 16 November 2019, with the exception of a few international flights. Customers are requested not to travel to their departure airport unless in possession of a rebooked itinerary.

The following international flights would be operating:

Friday, November 15, 2019

DEPART ARRIVE

Maputo                   SA147      07:30        08:35

Lusaka                    SA067     07:15        09:15

Harare                    SA025      07:20       09:00

Windhoek               SA073      06:40       08:25

Accra                      SA210      09:10       16:55

Frankfurt                 SA261      20:45       08:25 next day

New York                SA204      10:40       08:15 next day

Munich                    SA265      21:05       07:40 next day

Hong Kong              SA287      23:50       07:10 next day

Perth                       SA281      23:40       04:55 next day

London                    SA235      19:00       07:05 next day

Washington             SA210      17:40       17:25 next day

The cancellations only affect flights operated by SAA. All flights operated on our partner airlines Mango, SA Express, Airlink and all codeshare partners will not be affected.

 

The following flight number ranges would operate normally:

SA1000 to SA1999

SA2000 to SA2999

SA7000 to SA7999

SA8000 to SA8999

Assistance will be provided to all ticketed customers holding a South African Airway is Ticket (only) through any SAA Contact Centre, City Ticket Office or dedicated Travel Agent with the following conditions:

– Rebook onto another South African Airways flight for any flight until 31st October 2020 at no extra charge and subject to availability in the same booking class

– If the customer no longer wishes to travel, then the booking can be cancelled and a full refund (including taxes) will be offered to the original form of payment.

– Re-routing would be permitted, Where possible rebook onto flight(s) operated by any of SAA’s Star Alliance, Codeshare and Interline Partners to transport customers to their final destination with minimal disruption.

– Change of cabin will not be permitted

– All tickets must be reissued on or before 30th November 2019.

– SAA will not be able to provide any support for Special Service Requests or Unaccompanied Minors during this period of Industrial Action

Top Copyright Photo: South African Airways Airbus A330-343 ZS-SXI (msn 1745) IAD (Brian McDonough). Image: 946361.

South African aircraft slide show: