South African Airways (SAA) has announced it will stop serving meals and beverages on its flights between the OR Tambo International Airport and Cape Town International Airport starting today.
“Your safety and health remain our number one priority, which is why we are taking strict measures to reduce your chances of exposure to the coronavirus. SAA will not be catering meals and beverages between Johannesburg and Cape Town effective 24 March until further notice.
“As an extra measure we request that passengers refrain from bringing their own meals on board,” it said.
While the airline has offered one free change of flights, all OR Tambo-Cape Town flights were still in operation until further notice.
“All direct SAA services are suspended except JNB/CPT/JNB, which are to hear about from our leadership due lockdown effective Friday 2020.”
Effective 25 March until further notice, the airline also closed its business class lounges in Joburg, Cape Town, Durban, Port Elizabeth and East London as well as the OR Tambo International departures lounge.
The airline announced on Friday that it was suspending all international and regional flights with immediate effect until 31 May 2020, to support the government travel ban aimed at stopping the transmission of the Covid-19.
“As a direct consequence of this suspension, there was an immediate drastic reduction of demand for the African regional flights. SAA is a network carrier, which means that a significant part of the regional bookings demand is fed by the passengers that travel to or from the international destinations.
“Therefore, the suspension of the international flights has resulted in the airline not being able to operate its normal network. This resulted in operation of regional flights not being commercially viable anymore,” it said in a statement.
Flights to Accra (Ghana), Lusaka (Zambia), Harare (Zimbabwe), Victoria Falls (Zimbabwe), Windhoek (Namibia), Lagos (Nigeria), Entebbe (Uganda), Livingstone (Zambia), Blantyre & Lilongwe (Malawi), Nairobi (Kenya), Kinshasa (DRC), Dar es Salaam (Tanzania) and Maputo (Mozambique) were suspended with immediate effect until 31 May.
(Compiled by Vhahangwele Nemakonde)