Tag Archives: Comair

Third wave of COVID-19 forces Comair and kulula.com to temporarily suspend services

Comair is temporarily suspending all scheduled kulula.com and British Airways (operated by Comair) flights for three weeks. This follows the President’s announcement of a move to an adjusted Level 4 lockdown and the prohibition on all non-essential travel in and out of Gauteng.

Flights will be suspended from Monday, July 5, 2021 and Comair aims to recommence services from July 30 subject to regulations being eased and Covid-19 infection rates, particularly in Gauteng, being contained.

Comair CEO, Glenn Orsmond, apologized to customers affected by the suspension.“This was a difficult decision, but we believe under the circumstances is the right course of action for our loyal customers and employees.” Comair business rescue practitioner, Richard Ferguson, described the temporary suspension as a “bold, brave and responsible step in light of the prohibition on leisure travel to and from Gauteng, very little business travel and no connecting traffic from international carriers.”

British Airways (Comair) slide show:

kulula.com slide show:

Comair to retire its last Boeing 737-300 by December

Comair Limited (British Airways franchise) (Johannesburg) has issued this update on its financial situation and fleet plans. The company has added additional Boeing 737-400s and last month it added the first first of four new Boeing 737-800s. This will allow Comair to phase out the last Boeing 737-300 by December 2015.

Read the full report:

Comair Limited logo

In the absence of revenue growth in the domestic passenger market and despite a challenging financial year, JSE-listed Comair Limited has announced continued profitability for the 12-month period ending June 30, 2015. Revenue remained consistent at R5.89 billion (2014: R5.90 billion), with a 1% saving in operating costs. Profit for the year amounted to R219 million (a net reduction of 17%, mainly as a result of two non-cash flow items). Cash from operations remained healthy at R646 million.

Comair reported a very strong profit in the first half of the financial year, supported by an unprecedented collapse in the oil price. The second half saw two new competitors enter the market with very aggressive, but more than likely unsustainable pricing. As a result, any savings achieved on the price of fuel were returned to customers by way of significantly reduced ticket prices, which led to a reversal of the revenue growth experienced in the first six months.

Comair CEO Erik Venter said despite the new capacity in the market, Comair maintained its passenger volumes, largely due to the strength of the kulula and British Airways brands and the company’s ongoing attention to service. “We continued to focus on our customers through the application of service metrics, feedback surveys, customer journey mapping, and extensive investment in training programmes for front-line staff. Operating performance therefore remained good, with on-time performance exceeding our threshold target of 85% across both the British Airways and kulula.com brands.”

The two non-cash flow items which resulted in decreased profits were the additional depreciation of R79 million provided on the retiring Boeing 737-300 fleet, and the year-end revaluation of R51 million to the dollar-based funding applicable to one Boeing 737-800.

Cash of R147 million was invested in three previously leased Boeing 737-400 aircraft and two pre-owned Boeing 737-400s, all for operation in the British Airways fleet. These aircraft have replaced the 737-300 fleet which will be fully retired by December. The newer aircraft afford improved fuel efficiency and reduced maintenance demands, while at the same time improving passenger comfort. Cash on hand at year-end was R849 million, much in line with the prior year balance of R868 million.

Venter said the black economic empowerment transaction concluded by Comair and the Thelo Consortium in 2007 matured in September 2014, and created realised value of R152 million for the participants. The “A” shares arising from the transaction were converted to ordinary shares, and the weighted effect of the additional shares amounted to a reduction in the 2015 earnings per share of 3 cents. Comair continued to invest in transformation initiatives, and thereby maintained its level 4 B-BBEE score.

Commenting on the year ahead, Venter said Comair remained concerned about weak economic growth and the consequent impact of overcapacity in the domestic aviation market. “Fundamentals dictate that a correction in market capacity is very likely. The new visa regulations applicable to South Africans traveling with children, as well as to foreign tourists, have impacted negatively on our cross-border tourist destinations, and we are actively participating in achieving a more favourable dispensation in this regard.”

“We are nevertheless confident that there is scope for further growth in our profits. Comair is focused on implementing technology solutions to enhance customer satisfaction, operating performance and drive revenue generating opportunities. We are also developing new applications to enhance both the ground and air experience that will facilitate more efficient operating procedures. Furthermore, the ongoing upgrades to the fleet will continue to improve efficiency while at the same time-enhancing the revenue potential per flight.”

In August 2015 we took delivery of the first of the next four new 737-800’s from Boeing, the remaining three of which will be delivered in late 2015 and 2016. The delivery of the eight Boeing 737-8 Max aircraft remains scheduled for 2019 to 2021.

Top Copyright Photo: Felix Gottwald/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 737-33A ZS-OAI (msn 24030) departs from the Johannesburg hub.

British Airways-Comair aircraft slide show: AG Airline Slide Show

Airline Aircraft Type “Endangered Species List” (airline aircraft types to be retired in the near future)

Click on the mosaic photo below for the full list, individual photos and the expected retirement target dates – the list will be constantly updated. All additional information or corrections are always welcome.

Endangered Species List Mosaic 9.22.15



Comair of South Africa orders eight Boeing 737 MAX aircraft

Comair Limited (British Airways) (Johannesburg) and Boeing (Chicago and Seattle) today announced an order for eight 737 MAX 8s, valued at $830 million at list prices. It is the first 737 MAX order announcement for an African operator. The order was booked in December 2013 and was previously unidentified on the Boeing Orders & Deliveries website.

Johannesburg-based Comair operates Africa’s first low cost carrier, kulula.com (Johannesburg), offering flights to South Africa’smajor cities. Comair is also the franchise partner of British Airways, operating its local and regional Southern African routes. The company currently flies an all-Boeing fleet of 25 Classic and Next-Generation 737s on its kulula.com and British Airways (operated by Comair) brands. The order for eight 737 MAX 8s will support future fleet renewal and expansion.

With today’s announcement Comair will have a total of 12 airplanes on order from Boeing, including the eight 737 MAX 8s and four Next-Generation 737-800s for delivery in 2015 and 2016. Since its announcement in 2011, the 737 MAX has amassed more than 1,800 orders worldwide.

Top Copyright Photo: Paul Denton/AirlinersGallery.com. Operating under the British Airways franchise agreement, Boeing 737-85R ZS-ZWI (msn 30403) arrives back at Comair’s Johannesburg base.

Comair (South Africa): AG Slide Show

Kulula: AG Slide Show

Bottom Copyright Photo: Rainer Bexten/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 737-86N ZS-ZWP (msn 28612) in the humorous “flying 101” special livery approaches the runway at Johannesburg.

Comair to cease all operations on September 29

Delta Air Lines (Atlanta) today announced its subsidiary, Comair, Inc. (Delta Connection) (Cincinnati) will cease all operations after September 29, 2012.

The company issued the following statement this morning:

“Ryan Gumm, President of Comair, communicated Delta’s decision this morning to Comair employees in a memo, the full text of which is included below.

The discontinuation of Comair’s operations will not result in any significant changes to Delta’s network, which has enough flexibility to accommodate these changes.  Currently, Comair accounts for approximately one percent of Delta’s network capacity.  There will be no disruption to customers and no significant adjustments to Delta’s flight schedule or locations served.  All customers who travel on the Delta network, whether on Delta Connection flights or mainline aircraft, can continue to make travel plans with Delta as they have in the past.

Cincinnati will continue to be an important market in Delta’s worldwide network.  Over the past several years, working with community leaders, Delta has right-sized capacity at Cincinnati to better match service to local passenger demand.  Cincinnati is now a profitable market for Delta and the city continues to enjoy over 120 peak daily flights, with non-stop service to 49 destinations.  No reductions in the number of Delta flights are planned at Cincinnati as a result of this decision.

To                            All Comair Employees
From                        Ryan Gumm, President
Subject                    Comair to Cease Operations
Date                        July 27, 2012


Today, I am writing to let you know that Delta has made the difficult decision to cease Comair’s operations after September 29, 2012.

Delta recently announced its intent to reduce the overall number of 50-seat regional jets in its network from nearly 350 to 125 or fewer in light of the significant changes in the economic and competitive conditions in the airline industry.  We believed this announcement would have a negative impact on Comair because we operate some of the oldest 50-seat aircraft in the Delta Connection fleet, which also have the highest unit cost per flight hour.  And, in fact, Delta has decided to remove the remaining 16 Comair 50-seaters from the Delta network, leaving Comair with only 28 aircraft in scheduled service.  This further reduction of Comair’s active fleet will only create higher unit costs, which equates to a business model that is no longer sustainable in this competitive regional environment.

I understand that today’s news is very difficult and raises many questions for you and your family.  Human Resources is prepared to directly assist you during this time.  They will post a memo and other documents on the Human Resources Epic page to keep you informed of the assistance available and to help answer many of your questions.  We will also have staff available over the weekend to answer questions if needed.  If after reviewing the information on Epic you have any additional questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to reach out to your departmental leadership as well.

The discontinuation of Comair’s operations is in no way a failure or a reflection of your work – it is an unfortunate necessity due to the economic limitations of our aging aircraft, cost structure, the long-term outlook for 50-seat aircraft, and our challenging industry and economy.  The quality of our operations has continued to be outstanding during our lengthy restructuring efforts, and I am honored to have had the opportunity to lead such a committed team.  I am asking that each of you recognize the importance of remaining focused on safety and the job at hand as we continue operations throughout the wind-down period.  Your continued commitment and your dedication to a safe and reliable operation is a testament to the professional team we have built here at Comair.”

Comair started operations in March 1977 and became a Delta Connection carrier on September 1, 1984.

Top Copyright Photo: Ken Petersen. Bombardier CRJ900 (CL-600-2D24) N695CA (msn 15097) taxies at New York (JFK) in the special “30 years” (1977-2007) when it celebrated its 30th Anniversary.

Bottom Copyright Photo: Jay Selman. ComAir started out as an independent carrier. Shorts SD3-30 N2630A (msn SH.3081) is pictured near Cincinnati in August 1982 dressed in the 1977 livery. The airframe was destroyed in a rare tornado at Miami on February 2, 1998.

Delta Connection-Comair: 

Air France’s A380 F-HPJD ground collides with Comair CRJ700 N641CA at New York JFK

Air France’s (Paris) Airbus A380 F-HPJD ground collided with Comair’s Bombardier CRJ700 N641CA at the intersection of taxiways M and A at New York’s JFK International Airport last might. The A380 was taxiing out for takeoff while the CRJ700 had just arrived and was stationary. The A380’s left wing tip collided with the CRJ700’s vertical stabilizer, spinning the CRJ700 around on the taxiway.

Read the full story from ABC: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing. Please click on the photo for aircraft information.

Delta Air Lines to expand at Tokyo Haneda and London Heathrow

Delta Air Lines (Atlanta) is preparing to expand service to two key international business airports – Haneda Airport in Tokyo and Heathrow Airport in London.

Delta begins nonstop service between Tokyo-Haneda and Detroit and Los Angeles on February 19, and will launch its new routes between Boston and Miami and London’s Heathrow Airport on March 26. The Heathrow-Miami route will be in direct competition with Oneworld partners American Airlines and British Airways.

Under multinational air service agreements, Delta has only been allowed to serve Heathrow since 2007 and is gaining access to Haneda this year. Delta is now the fastest-growing U.S. carrier to Heathrow, and with new Haneda flights, will become the largest U.S. carrier to both of Tokyo’s major airports – Haneda and Narita.

Delta is adding new nonstop flights between the three cities and Miami International Airport to enable convenient connections to Heathrow for customers across Florida. The intra-Florida flights will be operated by Delta Connection carriers Comair (Cincinnati) and Pinnacle Airlines (Memphis) using 50-seat Bombardier CRJ200 regional jets.

Copyright Photo: Brandon Farris. Please click on the photo for aircraft details.

Delta is planning to start Washington Reagan National-Providence in April

Delta Air Lines (Atlanta) is planning to launch the Washington (Reagan National)-Providence route in April with Delta Connection CRJs. The new route has not been publicly announced by the company. The exact carrier is unknown.

Copyright Photo: Bruce Drum. Please click on the photo for additional information on Comair.

Comair to slash aircraft and jobs

Comair (Cincinnati) is planning to cut one half of its existing fleet and the corresponding jobs according to this article in Cincinnati.com. Comair will also close its New York (JFK) crew base.

Read the full report:


Copyright Photo: Bruce Drum. This Bombardier CRJ100 (CL-600-2B19) N729CA (msn 7265) once proudly proclaimed its hometown CVG hub and city. Times have changed for the subsidiary of Delta Air Lines.

Comair may lay off up to 100 pilots

Copyright Photo: Ken Petersen.  Please click on photo for full view, information and other information.

Copyright Photo: Ken Petersen. Please click on photo for full view, information and other information.

Comair (Delta Connection) (subsidiary of Delta Air Lines) (Cincinnati) may be forced to lay off up to 100 pilots.

News link: