The Board of Airline Representatives of South Africa (Barsa) is an organisation that represents international airlines operating flights to South Africa. The organisation consisted of 32 airlines that carried passengers to and from South Africa prior to the onset of the global pandemic in 2020.
Tourism Update reports that Barsa recently found that only 12 of the 32 airlines which previously flew to our shores are still operating services to South Africa, and allow South Africans to travel as passengers on their flights.
EFFECT OF COVID-19 ON SA FLIGHTS
Barsa revealed in a report that South Africa has seen a 62% reduction in air connectivity as a result of the travel and flight bans which have been imposed on the country.
This situation has been exacerbated by the negative perception of South Africa, stemming from the new COVID-19 strain detected in December 2020, dubbed “the South African variant”.
EFFORTS TO SALVAGE THIS SITUATION
In an attempt to prevent further loss of air connectivity, and to facilitate the return of international airlines to these shores, Barsa is working with governments and the aviation sector, to address negative perceptions of South Africa, resulting from the highly publicised “SA variant”.
Barsa’s CEO Zuks Ramasia told Tourism Update that the organisation was engaging with embassies and diplomatic missions representing the countries whose airlines no longer operate flights to South Africa, in order to allay fears and to address the situation.
Airlines still operating flights to SA (and permitting passengers from SA to board flights):
- Air Botswana
- Air France
- El Al Israel Airlines
- Ethiopian Airlines
- Kenya Airways
- Linhas Aereas de Mozambique
- Proflight Zambia
- Qatar Airways
- Turkish Airlines
Airlines that are not operating (or are not permitting travellers to board flights in SA):
- Air Austral
- Air Mauritius
- Air Namibia
- Air Seychelles
- British Airways
- Cathay Pacific
- Delta Air Lines
- Emirates Airlines – only allows passengers on inward flights
- Etihad Airways
- KLM Royal Dutch Airlines – only allows Dutch nationals and EU residents
- Latam Airlines
- Qantas Airlines
- South African Airways
- Saudi Arabian Airlines
- Singapore Airlines – only allows Singapore residents on flights
- Swiss International Airlines
- TAAG Angola Airlines
- Virgin Atlantic Airlines