South African Airways was founded in the year 1934 by the South African government. It is an official airline of the Association of Tennis Professionals in South Africa. The airline offers excellent services to people both on the board and on the ground. SAA is currently and historically the only airline in Africa to be attached with the prestigious 4-star airline ranking from Skytrax. It has also been awarded as Africa’s Best Airline during the World Airline Awards for many years. It flies to 36 international destinations in around 28 countries all over the world. It is one of those airlines that provide services to all the six inhabited continents. And it is one of the most well-known airlines in South Africa itself. It has many special services and programs for its customers.
One of its highlighted service or programs is Voyager, which is the frequent flyer program for its regular customers. Many other airlines apart from SAA also have an alliance with the program, and it also partners 32 other airlines, along with other businesses. The Voyager consists of five levels that range from Blue, Silver, Gold, Platinum and Lifetime. All these tiers come with distinctive features specially made for customers. To reach a higher tier, all the members must fly on selected flights and allocate “Tier Miles” to progress.
The online booking can be done either on the official website of the airline or the travel agents’ web portal. Offline, you can book it directly from airline’s ticketing center. Onboard the aircraft, passengers are guaranteed a comfortable and leisurely flight. South African Airways flights are characterized by unbeatable personal service from the moment you check in up to the moment you land.
The other main services provided by SAA for its passengers are the in-flight entertainment and onboard menu. The in-flight entertainment offers the customers everything from the latest music, movies, fun and interactive games to a large stream of all types of TV shows and programs and also the documentaries like books, magazines, etc. And if a customer is looking for something else, he/she is provided with the same. The onboard menu depends on flights, wherein on shorter flights snacks or hot meals along with an alcoholic or non-alcoholic beverage of choice are presented. And for longer flights, the options may include a la carte dining. Fine wines and champagnes are also available for its Business Class passengers.
SAA operates a fleet of 54 Airbus and Boeing aircraft. It offers mainly two options of travel class on the flights. They are the Economy Class seats that offer a seat pitch of 31-33 inches and the Business Class seats with a seat pitch of 36 inches for more privacy and comforts.
SAA travelers who fly economy have available to them private televisions including audio-visual-on-demand and they are treated to a choice of two savory meals which are enhanced with a selection of South African Wines.
Safety and maintenance are very important to South African Airways. They have the largest maintenance facility in Africa, located in Johannesburg. Not only do they do their maintenance, but they also do maintenance on British Airways and Air France planes.