- CAPA Analysis
- Schedule Analysis
- Cargo Analysis
- Market Share
- Low Cost Carriers
- Fast Fact Report
- IATA Code
- International Airlines serving this country (excluding codeshares)
South Africa has three major international airports in Johannesburg, Cape Town and Durban. Johannesburg, as South Africa's main economic centre, is home to the country's primary international gateway; Oliver R Tambo International Airport. South Africa's aviation industry is undergoing rapid expansion on the growth of business and leisure market travel which has spurred on a significant infrastructure development program at the country’s major airports. The Airports Company South Africa is the operator of 10 of the country’s busiest airports, including the three main international airports, and handles over 18 million departing passengers annually and 200,000 aircraft landings. The government body responsible for formulating commercial aviation policy is the Department of Transport, while the organisation responsible for its regulation is the South African Civil Aviation Authority.
Airports in South Africa
62 total articles
South African Airways (SAA) is again looking at opportunities for new partnerships and network expansion. SAA is now re-engaging with Etihad following an unsuccessful initial partnership and is keen to launch new routes after the delivery of its first two A330-300s in 4Q2016.
Any growth, however, is unlikely to be profitable until SAA addresses its longstanding challenges. The airline has still not fully implemented its previous turnaround plan and urgently needs yet another capital injection.
A full and deep restructuring is required but seems impossible in the current political environment. Repeated government meddling has put SAA in an extremely challenging situation. The airline is in dire straits, and its outlook remains bleak.
African LCC group fastjet is expanding in the South African market in 2016, starting with the early Feb-2016 launch of flights to Johannesburg from Harare and Victoria Falls in Zimbabwe. Johannesburg will be the first international destination for fastjet Zimbabwe, which is assessing several international routes for 2016 as it expands its A319 fleet.
fastjet is also aiming to launch an affiliate in Zambia in 2016 with services to Johannesburg from up to three Zambian cities. fastjet has been serving South Africa since Oct-2013 but currently only has one route: a daily flight on a Johannesburg-Dar es Salaam-Zanzibar routing.
This is the second of two analysis reports on fastjet. This first instalment focused on the Kenyan market, where fastjet has recently launched services and is keen to expand further. This instalment will focus on Zimbabwe, South Africa and the overall outlook for the group.
The unfortunately customary trials and tribulations of South African Airways are, in Dec-2015, accompanied by the development that Skywise, one of two recent start-ups, has been suspended for unpaid airport and air traffic fees. Its licence remains intact, but a search for investors to recapitalise the airline continues.
Amid that turmoil is the quietly bright story of Mango, the wholly-owned LCC of SAA. Mango has crept up to take account of over one third of the SAA group's domestic capacity, allowing the group to maintain over 50% market share in South Africa, a compelling example of dual brand strategies. Despite being the most profitable (and consistent) carrier in South Africa, Mango still has to fight for the SAA board to permit it more growth. Mango already carries the SAA codeshare, and from 2016 will have codeshares from other Star Alliance carriers as Mango becomes the first Connecting Partner carrier under Star's recently launched platform. Mango will decide in 2016 whether to offer a premium seat option, as it continues to hybridise.
African LCC group fastjet has finally been able to launch an affiliate in a second market to supplement its original operation in Tanzania after nearly three years of multiple setbacks and delays. fastjet Zimbabwe commenced operations on 28-Oct-2015 with an A319 operating a domestic route between Harare and Victoria Falls.
fastjet Tanzania launched in 2012 with an initial fleet of three A319s. It recently took delivery of two A319s, its first additional aircraft in almost three years, and is using the additional capacity to expand across its network of four domestic and five international destinations.
Tanzania was never envisioned as a large operation given the relatively small size of the market. But fastjet’s attempts to launch airlines in other African markets have been repeatedly set back, a victim of protectionism and bureaucracy.
The South African Airways (SAA) Group is planning to pursue further growth in the domestic and regional international markets as competition intensifies. SAA mainline aims to grow regional international revenues by 30% in the current fiscal year while its predominately domestic budget subsidiary Mango plans to grow capacity by about 20%.
The group at least for now plans to continue relying on its full service brand in the short-haul international market despite growing competition from LCCs. African LCC groups flyafrica.com and fastjet now compete against SAA on some of its most lucrative routes and are aiming to launch several more routes to South Africa.
Competition has intensified even more significantly in South Africa’s domestic market as new LCCs FlySafair and Skywise have launched, breaking the duopoly of SAA and rival airline group Comair. Mango is responding by adding two more 737-800s, which will be used primarily to add domestic capacity.
South African Airways (SAA) is continuing attempts to turn around its long-haul operation by switching, in Aug-2015, the stopover point on some of its Washington Dulles flights from Dakar in Senegal to Accra in Ghana. SAA expects strong local demand for the new Accra-Washington leg compared to virtually no local demand for Dakar-Washington, which should result in a significant improvement in its US operation.
In Mar-2015 SAA made an initial two major steps in restructuring its long-haul network by suspending services to Beijing and Mumbai while launching services to Abu Dhabi as part of an enhanced partnership with Etihad. SAA’s long-haul operation, which has been highly unprofitable in recent years, also has seen significant improvements due to lower fuel prices and lower aircraft leasing costs following the extension of A340 leases at lower rates.
But SAA still faces challenges as it tries to complete a difficult to achieve turnaround of its long-haul operation. SAA will need to ultimately acquire new generation widebody aircraft, which it has delayed multiple times. SAA will likely now keep at least a portion of its A340 fleet operating until at least 2020, a potentially risky decision should oil prices rise again.