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SAA - South African Airways
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South African Airways (SAA) is the national flag carrier of South Africa. In 1934, the South African government took over Union Airways and renamed it South African Airways. At the time it served only Cape Town, Durban and Johannesburg.

Since then, South African Airway’s commercial services have only faced brief suspension during the early 1940’s due to the outbreak of war in Europe. During the late 1980’s a number of international routes were suspended due to sanctions against the apartheid system, but SAA continued to fly domestically and to many countries in the region.

In 1997 SAA adopted new branding and colours to match the nations new national flag. This branding replaced the former flag’s colours of orange, white and blue, and the airline’s former symbol of a springbok. In 1997, South African Airways also formed an alliance with SA Airlink and South African Express and formed the SAA Group, which made it possible for more destinations to be flown to. In 2000, SAA launched their online booking system

Besides its alliance with SA Airlink and SA Express, SAA is the only African member of a global airline network called the Star Alliance, as well as a partner of Skyways, the Emirates frequent flyer program.

Despite not being a low cost carrier, South African Airways still enjoys loyal support from thousands of passengers each month. SAA is especially popular among businessmen, mostly due to its long standing reputation and its wide selection of destinations not served by other airlines.

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SAA,s Fleet:

South African Airway’s fleet consists of 17 Boeing 737-800s, 11 Airbus 319-100s, 6 Airbus 340-300e’s.

6 Airbus 340-200s and 9 Airbus 340-600s which can seat between 95 and 175 people in either a 2-4-2 or 3-3 seating configuration. The average age of SAA’s aircraft is 5 years old.

Most of South African Airway’s flights offer the choice between economy, business and first class.

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On board services

Included in the ticket price is a complimentary meal – or two, depending on the length of the flight – as well as beverages. On shorter flights, snacks are usually served instead of full meals.


South African Airways is one of only 8 airlines in the world to fly to destinations on all 6 of the world’s inhabited continents.

They serves 5 domestic destinations by means of the following routes:

Johannesburg to Durban

Johannesburg to Cape Town

Johannesburg to East London

Johannesburg to Port Elizabeth

Durban to Johannesburg

Durban to Cape Town

Cape Town to Johannesburg

Cape Town to Durban

Port Elizabeth to Johannesburg

East London to Johannesburg

The other members of the SAA Group, SA Airlink and South African Express serve 13 additional destinations, most of which are not flown to by any other commercial domestic airline. These destination include:




Mala Mala



Richards Bay







South Africa Airways also flies to 32 international destinations in 26 countries. Most intercontinental flights depart from Johannesburg’s O.R Tambo International Airport, with only one Cape Town to London flight being offered.

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