South African Airways announces its return to Perth

A South African Airways A340 on the tarmac.
Konstantin von Wedelstaedt (GFDL 1.2 or GFDL 1.2), via Wikimedia Commons

South African Airways (SAA) has announced the resumption of its flights to Perth, Australia.

The much-anticipated inaugural flight from Johannesburg to Perth is slated for April 28, 2024, and ticketing for the reinvigorated service commenced Monday, January 8, 2024.

SAA Strategic Plans


SAA’s CEO, Professor John Lamola, expresses his delight at this development, citing that the decision aligns with the airline’s overall strategic plans.

The goal is to elevate operations to a profitable level by leveraging SAA’s unique capabilities as a national carrier equipped with wide-body aircraft, offering South Africa a long-haul intercontinental air connectivity that stands unparalleled.

Notably, the Perth route’s revival follows the successful launch of the Sao Paulo, Brazil route on October 31, 2023, marking the second interoceanic route reopening within just six months.

The Southern hemisphere now beckons with a travel package connecting Perth to Sao Paulo through Johannesburg, creating a fascinating route for globetrotters.

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Star Alliance Advantage


As a proud member of the global Star Alliance network, SAA takes pride in enhancing seamless travel into and out of Australia for customers across the 25 airlines that share membership in this esteemed alliance.

“Perth has long been a favored destination for South African and Australian travelers, with about 80% of our target market visiting family and friends,” adds Lamola.

“The recommencement of the route facilitates direct passage for both leisure and business travelers, fostering trade and cultural exchange between South Africa and Australia.”

Flight Details


Flights under the designation SA 280 depart from OR Tambo International Airport in Johannesburg three times a week—on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Sundays at 20h55.

They arrive at Perth International Airport the following day at 12h20. Return flights (SA 281) from Perth are scheduled on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays, departing at 14h40 and arriving the same day at 19h35 in Johannesburg.

Aboard the Airbus A340-300


During the launch phase, SAA will operate the Airbus A340-300, boasting a total seat capacity of 253, including 38 business class seats and 215 economy seats.

Recognized globally for its spacious, comfortable, and reliable design, the A340-300 is well-equipped to handle long-distance flights with utmost ease.

For the launch of the Perth route, SAA Voyager frequent flyers are in for a treat, as they can earn and redeem their air miles.

Members receive one SAA Voyager mile for every R1.60 spent on their air ticket purchase. Additionally, being a Star Alliance member opens avenues for Voyager members in Australia to avail the HSBC Star Alliance Credit Card, offering more opportunities to earn Voyager miles and attain Elite credit card status based on their spending.

Conclusion


“We are committed to growing SAA into a revered leader in the global aviation sector. Perth is but one indicator of this ambition, giving us confidence that our vision of expanding our footprint to over 20 destinations this year will be realized,” concludes Lamola.

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South African Airways will restore a popular route with the planned relaunch of Perth flights from Johannesburg now set for April 2024.
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