JOHANNESBURG — Following months of preparation after exiting business rescue, South African Airways has resumed both domestic and continental service.
The carrier’s first scheduled flight takes place today, Sept. 23, from Johannesburg to Cape Town, and is one of three return flights per day between the two cities. Flights are also set to start to five African capitals – Accra, Kinshasa, Harare, Lusaka, and Maputo.
SAA’s Interim CEO Thomas Kgokolo says: “This week is a proud and significant one for SAA and its staff as well as all South African citizens. Our journey back to the skies has not been easy and I pay tribute to our dedicated workforce in all areas of the business all of whom have and are putting in long hours ahead of this day. People in every facet of the business want nothing more than for SAA to succeed and for us to build a new airline based on safety and exemplary customer service.”
Kgokolo says while SAA has big ambitions its overriding ethos will be one of responsible and prudent fiscal management and a commitment to transparency.
“We restart this business with a new vision of pride in the brand and one that has been inculcated into every staff member. Our first order of business is to service our start-up routes efficiently and profitably and then look to expanding the network and growing our fleet, all depending on demand and market conditions.”
SAA’s Board Chair John Lamola says: “SAA’s return will provide more market equilibrium in terms of ticket pricing. Since the carrier went into and then out of business rescue there has been less local capacity and that means tickets have become more expensive. Our return to the skies will mean more competitive pricing and will enable more South Africans to fly.”