Following several rumours in the media on Tuesday, declaring that SAA had “major cancellations” and was about to “cease operations”, the South African national airline has issued a statement clarifying that it is in the “process of consolidating selected domestic flights” (from Joburg to Cape Town and Durban) and its international service to Munich, Germany.
SAA said these consolidations are in line with “usual policy of reviewing flights and consolidating services with low demand”.
In an earlier statement the airline said it was aware of media reports suggesting that it will cease operations, but wanted to “assure its customers and stakeholders that flights to all its destinations continue as normal”.
The company said that “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.”
SAA revealed that the consolidation on the Cape Town route is also necessary as the airline 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,” said SAA.
The domestic flights affected are those between the airline’s main hub, Oliver Tambo International Airport in Johannesburg and Cape Town, as well as between Johannesburg and Durban’s King Shaka 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,” SAA said in a statement Tuesday morning. See details below.
On the international network, SAA is cancelling selected services between Johannesburg and Munich. SAA has reassured passengers it will re-accommodate them on its services between Johannesburg and Frankfurt as well as London Heathrow.
“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,” SAA said. Details below.
SAA said it 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,” said the statement.
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
The following international 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: 20, 21, 22, 23 & 24 January