SAA Cancels Local Flights

On Thursday the joint Business Rescue Practitioners (BRPs) of South African Airways reportedly announced that SAA will be cancelling all of its domestic flights, bar flights between Johannesburg and Cape Town.

According to the BRPs Les Matuson and Siviwe Dongwana, the latest initiatives are aimed at supporting SAA’s transformation into a sustainable and profitable business and are in line with the urgent action required to conserve cash.

The BRPs also announced that they are exploring the sale of some of the embattled airline’s assets, and confirmed that staff cuts would have to be made.

Just recently the state-owned Development Bank of Southern Africa had to come to the rescue of SAA with an R3.5 billion funding lifeline to prevent its total collapse.

In November last year, before SAA went into business rescue, the airline announced the intention of implementing restructuring which could have included more than 944 job cuts. Numsa expects it could now end up being even more than that. On Wednesday the National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (Numsa) warned that SAA intends to accelerate plans to reduce its wage bill.

According to the latest announcement, all domestic destinations, including Durban, East London, and Port Elizabeth, will cease to be operated by SAA from February 29, 2020. Domestic routes operated by Mango will, however, not be affected by the changes.

Customers booked on cancelled domestic flights will be re-accommodated on services operated by Mango.

“SAA does not intend to make any further significant network changes. Passengers and travel agents can, therefore, feel confident about booking future travel with South African Airways,” the BRPs said.

The flight schedule for February remains unchanged.