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South African Airways cancels 162 flights due to spread of coronavirus

This morning, the South African Airways (SAA) announced the cancellation of 162 flights which includes international and regional (destinations on the African continent), amid Coronavirus (COVID-19).

The SAA says it took this decision to scale down in response to the low demand for air travel.

The effects of the outbreak of the Coronavirus (Covid-19) have led to travel disruptions and restrictions across the world, leading to the grounding of aircraft, releasing employees, and canceling flights for many airlines.

In the light of the substantial fall in demand for air travel, SAA has reviewed its flight schedule and has decided to operate flights only under circumstances where its load factors and other business considerations weigh in favour of scheduling flights. However, certain flights that have been negatively impacted more than others, are consequently canceled.

For the period 17 until 31 March 2020, SAA has canceled a total of 162 flights. Of these, 38 are international and 124 are regional (destinations on the African continent) flights.

However, the airline is continuing to provide a service on the domestic, regional and international networks for those passengers whose travel is essential and cannot be avoided.

“We have updated our Customer Reservation Policy to help our passengers defer their travel plans where possible. To this end, we have offered our customers one free ticket change, in acknowledgment of travel restrictions that are not of our customers’ own making,” said SAA Chief Commercial Officer, Philip Saunders.

The Updated Reservation Policy now extends to the entire SAA route network.


Below is a summary of the amended travel policy, which is available on www.flysaa.com.
  • Must rebook / reissue ticket/s by 30 April 2020.
  • Complete travel by 28 February 2021.
  • Rebook same booking class with no additional collection and change fees waived.
  • Additional fare collection and taxes will apply to cases of seasonality change, but change fees will be waived.
  • If same booking class is not available, upgrade to lowest applicable booking class.  Additional fare collection and taxes will apply but change fees will be waived.
  • One (1) free change and ticket reissue permitted only.
  • Tickets to be endorsed “COVID-19 SA FLT/DATE”.
  • Applicable to all fare types.
  • Change of cabin will not be permitted.
  • Change of routing will not be permitted.
  • This travel advisory waives the 72-hour rule.
  • This policyis applicable to South African Airways flights only and does not apply to Mango, SA Express and Airlink, issued on SA (083) ticket stock and not on separate tickets of other airlines. This policywill apply when Mango, SA Express and Airlink forms part of the itinerary issued on SA (083) ticket stock.
  • No refunds are permitted as part of this advisory.
  • Other refunds are permitted according to the applicable fare rules.
  • Previous No-show passengers are not eligible for this waiver.
  • SAA reserves the right to withdraw or revise the terms and conditions without prior notice.

Customers are encouraged to visit www.flysaa.com for further update

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