SAA signs code-share agreement with RwandAir
SOUTH AFRICAN Airways (SAA), the South African flag-carrier and RwandAir, the national carrier of Rwanda, announced that they have signed a bilateral code-share agreement for operations between Johannesburg and Kigali.
RwandAir will be the operating carrier, while South African Airways will market the route. Rwandair flies seven times per week between the two cities. Under the new agreement, RwandAir will provide feeding flights between its network and that of SAA’s from its hub at O.R. Tambo International Airport (ORTIA). In turn SAA customers will be able to travel between Johannesburg and Kigali with the convenience of travelling on a single-ticket should they connect from another destination outside Johannesburg.
Kendy Phohleli, SAA General Manager Commercial (Acting), said that RwandAir and SAA have made great strides in developing the Rwandan aviation sector. “Through the code-share agreement with RwandAir, SAA’s valued clientele will gain new travel choices to the Rwanda market via RwandAir’s increased presence in the market providing for seamless travel and status recognition through the respective frequent flyer programmes,” he said.
The CEO of RwandAir, John Mirenge, also stressed the airline’s commitment to develop Kigali as a hub. “O.R. Tambo International Airport is a well-known hub for most African and world travellers. But to date we do not have many optimal hubs within the region that support the network of multiple airlines,” he noted. “This code-share agreement helps us develop Kigali as a new hub, furthermore connecting it with other existing hubs like ORTIA and allowing the two airlines to join their respective networks.”
South African Airways (SAA), Africa’s most awarded airline, operates to 42 destinations worldwide. In its domestic market SAA has an extensive schedule operating 660 flights in total per week between Johannesburg – Cape Town, Durban, East London and Port Elizabeth, from its Johannesburg hub, as well as code-shared flights between Lanseria – Cape Town and Durban. SAA offers more frequencies than any other airline in South Africa. Regionally, SAA offers 26 destinations across the African continent including Abidjan, Accra, Blantyre, Brazzaville, Bujumbura, Cotonou, Dakar, Dar es Salaam, Douala, Entebbe, Harare, Kigali, Kinshasa, Lagos, Libreville, Lilongwe, Livingstone, Luanda, Lusaka, Maputo, Mauritius, Nairobi, Ndola, Pointe Noire, Victoria Falls and Windhoek.
SAA’s international network creates links to all major continents from South Africa through 11 direct routes and code-shares, with daily flights from Johannesburg to London (Heathrow), Frankfurt, Munich, Mumbai, Perth, Hong Kong, Beijing, New York, Washington, Sao Paulo and Buenos Aires. SAA has code-share agreements with 27 other airlines across the markets it serves. SAA’s core business is the provision of passenger airline and cargo transport services together with related services, which are provided through SAA and its four wholly-owned subsidiaries: SAA Technical; Mango its low cost carrier; Air Chefs, the catering entity of SAA and South African Travel Centre (SATC). SAA is a Star Alliance member which offers more than 21,900 daily flights to 1,328 airports in 195 countries. SAA is the winner of the 'Best Airline in Africa’ Award in the regional category for eleven consecutive years. Mango and SAA hold the number one and number two successive spots as South Africa’s most on-time airlines.
Operating from Kigali as its hub in the heart of Africa, RwandAir is one of the fastest growing airlines on the African continent. RwandAir's fleet now consists of four Boeing 737 series aircraft and one Bombardier Dash-200 series. Two brand new Bombardier CRJ-900 NextGen regional jets arrived in November, 2012, and the next acquisition is confirmed to be the Q400 that will introduce business class to domestic routes, starting in March, 2014. RwandAir serves one domestic destination and several regional cities such as Nairobi, Entebbe, Mombasa, Bujumbura, Dar es Salaam, and Kilimanjaro. The airline also serves Johannesburg, Dubai, Lagos, Accra, Libreville and Brazzaville. Juba in South Sudan was officially unveiled on October 12, 2013 and is the airline’s 15th destination.