South African Airways has cancelled more domestic and international flights this week as the national carrier faces a deepening funding crisis.
Twenty-eight domestic flights and 10 international have been pulled from the airline’s timetable.
The airline said it is “working closely with its sister airline, Mango, to re-accommodate passengers on alternative services operated by both airlines to minimise disruption”.
Twenty flights between Johannesburg and Durban and eight flights between Johannesburg and Cape Town have been pulled.
Ten flights between Johannesburg and Munich have also been cancelled.
The airline said it would re-accommodate passengers on its Johannesburg-Frankfurt and Johannesburg-Heathrow services, or on partner airlines in the Star Alliance.
Further flight schedule changes would be “reviewed” over the coming days, the airline added.
The Foreign and Commonwealth Office updated its travel advice for several African countries to say that SAA will be “reviewing further possible flight schedule amendments in the coming days” after cancelling some international and domestic services.
The FCO added: “Check with your airline or tour operator before travelling.”
The Department of Public Enterprises extended the deadline for a bail-out while it continues to seek Treasury funding.
SAA has not made a profit since 2011.
The airline announced plans last week to sell nine widebody Airbus A340s to make way for four new A350s, but acting chief executive Zuks Ramasia said the decision to sell the aircraft had “nothing to do with the business rescue process”.
A statement from the airline issued on Tuesday said: “These decisions are in line with SAA’s usual policy of reviewing flights and consolidating services with low demand. Furthermore, 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.
“The consolidation on the Cape Town route is also necessary as SAA 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.
“SAA 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.”
Full list of cancelled flights:
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
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: 21, 22, 23, 24 & 25 January
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