SAA increases flight capacity for Eastern Cape business travellers

2018-06-08 12:47 - Saara Mowlana
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SAA has added capacity to the Eastern Cape for business travellers between East London and Johannesburg.(Photo: iStock)

South African Airways (SAA) has recently increased its capacity to the Eastern Cape for business travellers flying between East London and Johannesburg.

The airline, recently nominated as one of the top five best airlines around the world, currently operates 24 flights per week between Johannesburg and East London - with a double daily service (except on Mondays and Saturdays).

On Sunday, 10 June, the airline will launch additional flights on three days of the week. This will increase the service to cover a total of 30 flights per week.

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These additional flights have been scheduled to cater specifically for the business traveller looking to travel timeously for meetings and require additional flexibility for return flights.

Tlali Tlali, SAA spokesperson, said that these additional early departure flights out of East London and later returns from Johannesburg make it ideal for business travellers from the coastal city to easily zip in and out of Johannesburg for business all in one day.

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The additional flights are:

  • SA472 - which departs on Mondays and Thursdays from East London at 06:30 and arrives in Johannesburg at 07:55 and on Saturdays departs at 08:00 and arrives at 09:25.
  • SA477 - which returns on Wednesdays, Fridays and Sundays from Johannesburg at 18:55 and arrives in East London at 20:20

The aircraft SAA uses to operate East London flights is the Airbus A319 or A320 aircraft. This offers passengers SAA's premium service in Business Class - ideal for business travellers.

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SAA's Voyager Elite members are exposed to a number of benefits which include:

  • priority check-in and boarding,
  • excess baggage,
  • lounge access.

In SAA's press release, they promise that the early morning departures out of East London offer seamless connections at Johannesburg with SAA flights departing for other destinations in SAA's regional route network. 

They also added that the flights that arrive in the late afternoon in Johannesburg offer easy connections with SAA's international flights.

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SAA Cargo to use added capacity as well

SAA Cargo will use the added capacity to also move around fresh seafood and other freight during the early morning flights out of East London in time for the departure on SAA's Hong Kong flight - as it is primarily destined for international markets in Asia.

The introduction of the three additional flights between Johannesburg and East London means that the SAA Group, along with its partner airlines, now offer an extensive service to passengers from the Eastern Cape.

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"We remain committed to ensuring that we respond to and meet the requirements of the market we serve. This means, SAA will continue to monitor performance and demand and will make appropriate commercial decisions with requisite agility in support of its customers," concludes Tlali.

The press release went on to say that SAA and its partner airlines now provide comprehensive service to the Eastern Cape with flights between Johannesburg and East London as well as George and Port Elizabeth.

These airlines also operate between Durban and East London, Cape Town and East London along with Cape Town and Port Elizabeth.

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Revised East London flights schedule:

* = newly added flights


  • Day of the Week: Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday
  • Depart: Johannesburg @ 10:00
  • Arrives: East London @ 11:35


  • Day of the Week: Daily
  • Depart: Johannesburg @ 15:30
  • Arrives: East London @ 16:55


  • Day of the Week: Daily
  • Depart: East London @ 17:25
  • Arrives: Johannesburg @ 18:50


  • Day of the Week: Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday
  • Depart: East London @ 12:05
  • Arrives: Johannesburg @13:30


  • Day of the Week: Monday, Thursday
  • Depart: East London 06:30
  • Arrives: Johannesburg @ 07:55


  • Day of the Week: Saturday
  • Depart: East London @ 08:00
  • Arrives: Johannesburg @ 09:25


  • Day of the Week: Wednesday, Friday and Sunday
  • Depart: Johannesburg @ 18:55
  • Arrives: East London @ 20:20