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SAA announces the return of direct flights from Cape Town to São Paulo

South African Airways (SAA) is thrilled to announce its much-awaited return of intercontinental flights, with São Paulo as the chosen destination. This marks SAA’s first intercontinental route since resuming operations in September 2021, following the South African government’s sale of its 51% stake to the Takatso Consortium.

SAA’s interim CEO, John Lamola, expressed his delight in selecting São Paulo as their international relaunch destination. He stated, “We are delighted to announce that São Paulo is our first international destination since the airline successfully emerged from an intensive commercial rescue process and the Covid-19 lockdown.”

Flights from Johannesburg and Cape Town to São Paulo will commence later this year, with bookings and sales starting on June 29, 2023. The launch flights will depart from Cape Town on October 31, 2023, and from Johannesburg on November 6, 2023.

From Johannesburg, SAA will operate two weekly flights. The outbound flight SA 222 will depart Johannesburg/OR Tambo (JNB) at 11:20 am, arriving in São Paulo/Guarulhos (GRU) at 4:15 pm on Mondays and Thursdays. The return flight SA 223 will depart São Paulo at 5:45 pm and arrive in Johannesburg at 7:45 am, also on Mondays and Thursdays.

From Cape Town, SAA will offer two weekly flights starting on October 31, 2023. Flight SA 226 will depart Cape Town (CPT) at 12:55 pm and arrive in São Paulo at 4:35 pm on Tuesdays and Saturdays. The return flight SA 227 will leave São Paulo at 6:05 pm and land in Cape Town at 6:40 am, again on Tuesdays and Saturdays.

Cape Town, renowned for its stunning landscapes and vibrant culture, is a major tourist destination in South Africa and an essential hub for commerce and business. With iconic landmarks such as Table Mountain and the Cape of Good Hope, Cape Town promises an unforgettable experience for travelers.

As SAA enters this new chapter, it intends to establish a dual hub model for its international operations, offering long-haul services from both Johannesburg (JNB) and Cape Town (CPT). In addition to São Paulo, SAA plans to operate flights to New York (JFK), United States, and at least one Australian city (Sydney and/or Perth) from Cape Town. From Johannesburg, the airline will serve destinations such as New York, Perth, São Paulo, London, and Frankfurt.

While the specific aircraft model for the Brazil routes has not been announced, SAA’s fleet has undergone restructuring, resulting in a reduced number of aircraft. The airline currently operates five Airbus A320ceo, one Airbus A330-300, and one Airbus A340-300. However, SAA has recently received approval from the South African government to acquire five Airbus A320s and one additional A330, which will be available for service from September 2023.

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