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South African Airways Suspends all Commercial Operations

Date: March 27, 2020

SOURCE:BUSINESS TRAVELER
JENNI REID 

The business rescue practitioners in charge of troubled South African Airways (SAA) have announced a suspension of all the carrier’s commercial operations around the world.

It follows last week’s news that SAA would pause all international flightsuntil May 31, due to a government travel ban and the declaration of the State of Disaster in South Africa.

Today it had also said it would suspend all domestic and regional flights until the same date.

“Our North America Regional Office in Fort Lauderdale, Florida and all commercial departments will suspend operations at close of business on Thursday, March 26 and will remain closed through April 15, 2020,” Todd Neuman, the airline’s executive vice president for North America, said today.

“Our utmost desire during this present period of uncertainty is to continue providing duty of care to our valued customers.

“For those customers holding unused SAA (083) tickets, there is no need to worry and no need to contact us now.

“All customers holding an unused ticket will be able to use its full value as a credit for travel on SAA-operated flights over the next two years, up to March 25, 2022.

“This is part of SAA’s commitment to support our customers during these unprecedented times and provide flexibility to encourage them to reschedule their travel to Africa at a later date.

“If you require assistance with rebooking, please visit flysaa.com to access our Flexible Travel Policy. As this situation is constantly evolving, this policy is continuing to be updated with the latest information for rebooking.”

Regional carrier SA Express, which is also operating under business rescue practitioners, suspended services until further notice on March 18.

State-owned SAA has long been in financial difficulty, and last month announced eight international route closures and the end of most of its domestic network as it undergoes a business restructuring.

It was today reported that acting CEO Zuks Ramasia will enter into early retirement from April, with her successor yet to be announced.


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