SAA Adding More Capacity

South African Airways (SAA) currently operates 7 Airbus aircraft, consisting of: 
  • 2x A320s, 
  • 3x A319s, 
  • 1x A330-300  
  • 1x A340-300. 

The A340 aircraft supports the schedule as an additional aircraft during required fleet maintenance or when capacity demand requires the deployment of a larger aircraft accommodating more passengers. As the peak holiday season approaches, SAA is bringing into service an additional three (3) A320 aircraft, bringing the total number of A320s to 5 aircraft supporting the high-capacity demand. The first of these was delivered on 25th September 2022, and the rest will be delivered every month from thence. 

Despite the delays in implementing the capital restructuring transaction involving a Strategic Equity Partner, the airline is on course to deliver commercially sustainable and world-class air passenger and cargo services in South Africa, regionally and soon globally. There is a clear demarcation of focus between the SAA Management that is driving a plan for competitive airline operations and the oversight of matters relating to the SEP, which the Department of Public Enterprises is managing. SAA management is relentlessly implementing the expansion of the airline to match market dynamics in both the domestic and international scene. 

According to SAA Executive Chairman Professor John Lamola, “SAA, as the national flag carrier and an entity wholly owned by the people of South Africa, has a responsibility to secure the sustainability of the airline industry in South Africa as an enabler of economic development and facilitator of affordable air travel to all users of air transportation in the country. The addition of extra seat capacity in the market enables the achievement of an equilibrium between supply and demand in the market that affects the pricing of air tickets”. 

Besides this additional capacity of three A 320s, SAA has increased the aircraft size over the last two weeks on two of our busiest routes, Cape Town and Harare. The Harare- Johannesburg route is now serviced by the larger A330 aircraft on three of its seven-day weekly frequencies. 

In addition, according to SAA Chief Commercial Officer Tebogo Tsimane, “SAA is replacing its A340- 300 with a similar capacity aircraft and will exit the A319 fleet in 2023. Tsimane added, “As we increase fleet size to match the needs of the growing network schedule, we are encouraged that our strategy cautiously re-enter markets abandoned due to the Covid pandemic. This has served us very well during the past twelve months, and we will continue to follow that cautious risk-adjusted trajectory.” 

SAA’s current business plan is to ramp up operations aggressively and implement a fleet strategy that will continue to gain momentum in growing our regional-continental services and introduce international-long haul services.

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