MEDIA STATEMENT BY SACAA 26 January 2022 Johannesburg – The South African Civil Aviation Authority…
Airlink, the South African-based domestic and regional airline, is suspending all operations after midnight this Thursday, 26 March 2020 in support of South Africa’s lock-down to slow and contain the spread of the COVID-19 “Coronavirus”.
This follows on from SAA, FlySafair and Comair’s announcement that they were also suspending all flights from the 26 March for the lock down period.
“The safety and well-being of our customers, crew, employees, their families and communities is our priority. It is our responsibility and civic duty to support and comply with the new and stringent measures restricting everyone’s movement, which were announced on Monday night by President Ramaphosa,” said Airlink Managing Director and Chief Executive, Rodger Foster.
Hitting the skies again on 20 April 2020
“We intend to gradually reinstate a new optimised schedule of services once the lock-down has been lifted. Whilst the restrictions are currently intended to last for 21 days, we will take our cue from the Government and the relevant health authorities. Our target date for recommencing operations will be 20 April 2020 and we will continue to keep our Customers, Travel Agents and Operators informed should unforeseen circumstances necessitate a change to this date” added Mr Foster.
4Z – breaking away from the SAA franchise agreement
Airlink, Africa’s largest privately-owned airline had already planned to operate independently from South African Airways (SAA) by using its own “4Z” flight code from 11 June 2020. This will now be brought forward to 20 April 2020 when schedules are resumed.
Selling seats on flights under the “4Z” flight code will enable Airlink to develop more routes and frequencies on an independent basis, as well as extend opportunities to establish new agreements with leading international airlines. Airlink flight schedules and bookings can be made through the website: www.flyairlink.com
The last date for the acceptance for travel on Airlink SA8 flights for passengers holding SAA “083” tickets will be this Thursday 26 March 2020. Thereafter passengers will need to purchase a new ticket on Airlink – 4Z (749).
Holders of tickets for travel on SA8 after 26 March 2020 with a ticket number commencing with the digits “083” should contact SAA for a refund as SAA holds the funds paid in advance for these bookings on behalf of Customers. SAA refunds may be contacted on +27 11 978 1786 or email email@example.com. Airlink SA8 flights will no longer feature after 26 March 2020.
Airlink Customer Care will be available during lockdown
Airlink Customer Care team will be available in the lockdown period during office hours to assist passengers with queries about 4Z bookings on firstname.lastname@example.org. We are still seeking clarity from the authorities on our ability to operate additional customer and agent telephonic support during the lockdown period.
“On behalf of Airlink, I want to thank our customers, suppliers and service providers for their patience, understanding, support and cooperation during these unprecedented times, in this unfortunate apocalyptic situation that is totally beyond our control” said Mr Foster.
Johannesburg-based Airlink is a privately owned, BBBEE Level 4 business and regional feeder airline with the widest network and choice of flights in Southern Africa. Last year it carried 2 million passengers on 60,000 flights annually to 39 destinations in nine African countries and St Helena Island.
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