Dec Newsletter

Embrace the new season with SAA!

For many of us, we have entered the last mile and cannot wait to take our annual break. We know you deserve it! Holiday time is precious for so many reasons, so avoid the over congested highways this summer and fly in style with SAA. No other domestic airline offers you such a comprehensive schedule, flying to more destinations, more often.

Speaking of flying in style, why not spoil yourself and fly premium, enabling you to enjoy our signature dishes created by our local master chef, Reuben Riffel.

Where ever you decide to go, and however you get there, SAA wishes you a blessed and peaceful summer break!

Until next time, travel safe!

Destination of the month
Special faresFlights From SASpecials to Africa
South Africa feature
Local Spotlight
Upcoming events
Voager News
Partner of the month

Destination of the month - Kigali and Bujumbura

South African Airways has added two more travel options to our African route network as part of the airline's growth plans on the continent.

Effective 17 January 2012, SAA will commence operations from Johannesburg to Kigali (Rwanda) and onwards to Bujumbura (Burundi). The return flights will operate from Bujumbura to Kigali and onwards to Johannesburg's OR Tambo International airport. These flights are now available from your local travel agent or via

SAA is focused on strengthening its intra-Africa network in line with its Africa Expansion programme. Adding even more destinations to our already extensive Africa route network gives our customers more travel options to thriving destinations that were previously difficult to reach by air.

In addition to being the capital city of Rwanda, Kigali is also its economic, cultural and tourist transit hub. Bujumbura is Burundi's capital and largest city and is close to the country's main port, shipping coffee as its primary export.

The route between Johannesburg to Kigali and onwards to Bujumbura will be serviced three times a week by a SAA's A319 aircraft which is able to accommodate 120 passengers in a two class (business and economy) configuration.

SAA's most recent addition to its African route network was the start of flights to Ndola, Zambia on 2 October. The Ndola service is largely aligned to growth in demand from mining executives, especially those flying into South Africa from countries such as Australia.

Fly to Perth

Kigali image
Specials from South Africa
Summer Sale! 3 Days Only!
Johannesburg to Cape Town from R795*
Book Now!
Johannesburg to PE (PLZ) from R795*
Book Now!
Johannesburg to Durban from R692*
Book Now!
Port Elizabeth Marina
Port Elizabeth Marina
Available seats : 4 166
*Above fares are on a one way basis, inclusive of all taxes and are subject to change due to currency fluctuations. Terms and conditions apply.
Quote Booking Code : MN25NOV11
African Specials
Acra to Hong Kong from USD 1567*
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Libreville to Hong Kong from XAF 862 600*
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Dakar to Hong Kong from XAF 121 7900*
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Kinshasa to Hong Kong from USD 1462*
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Available seats : 1 328
Skyline in Hong Kong
Skyline in Hong Kong
*Above fares are on a return basis, inclusive of all taxes and are subject to change due to currency fluctuations. Terms and conditions apply.
Quote Booking Code : MN25NOV11

Experience SAA

Famous Chef Reuben Riffel

Prepares Special On-board Dishes

South African Airways (SAA) has partnered with the famous South African chef, Reuben Riffle (pictured), of the famed Reuben's restaurant in Franschoek in the Western Cape, to prepare some of his signature dishes for the airline's Premium Class customers.

Premium Class customers travelling on all longer regional routes (into Africa) as well as to international destinations will already be able to enjoy these dishes.

Reuben is working on the menus on routes out of Johannesburg and Cape Town only. The signature dishes Reuben has designed especially for the enjoyment of our customers will be identified by his signature next to each dish.

Ruben image

Reuben's food philosophy is that food doesn't have to be fancy and extravagant to be delicious. He burst onto the restaurant scene when still in his early 20s where he worked at Monneaux Restaurant where he quickly moved up the ranks from Assistant Sous Chef to Executive Chef. Monneaux was voted one of Eat Out's Top 10 restaurants for two consecutive years. From there he headed to Cambridge in England, to open Bruno's Brasserie with some friends. Bruno's received rave reviews and earned a loyal following of patrons.

In 2004 the lure of the Cape Winelands drew him back home to South Africa where he opened his Reuben's restaurant in Franschoek. Reuben's was an instant hit and within six months it won the prestigious Eat Out Johnnie Walker Restaurant of the Year Award. Reuben himself won the coveted title of Eat Out Johnnie Walker Chef of the Year. Reuben's was also voted one of Eat Out Johnnie Walker's Top 10 Restaurants in 2005 and 2006; and in 2007 Reuben Riffel won the invitation-only Unilever Chef of the Year title.

In 2008 he published Reuben Cooks - Food is Time Travel; and was awarded Best Chef's Book in South Africa 2009 at the international Gourmand World Cookbook Awards in Spain.

"SAA's collaboration with Reuben Riffel is just one of the initiatives we are currently working on to take food and beverage to greater heights while at the same time improving our on-board product offering," says Bongi (Tshazi) Sodladla, SAA's Food and Beverage Manager.

Some of Reuben's signature dishes our Premium Class customers will be able to enjoy include:

  • A Selection of Canap's
  • Pickled Kingklip - with fennel créme and dhal (a traditional South African speciality)
  • Lamb Rilette & Sous-vide - lamb loin, accompanied by new potatoes with pink pepper-corn, aubergine and lamb jus

Local is lekker - Cape Town

The lure of a holiday in Cape Town lies in its spectacular setting and the beauty of its natural environment, as well as the rich cultural diversity of its people. It is a city with four distinct seasons, each working its particular magic on Cape Town and bringing with it a flood of associations - summer and white sandy beaches, autumn's crisp colours, the ferocity of stormy seas in winter, and spring's show of Cape fynbos flowers.

It's vast combination of culture, history and scenery leads to an unforgettable experience. This is a special place with much to contribute towards its growing reputation as a favoured travel destination.

Fly to Cape Town

Cape Town image
Cape Town - V&A Waterfront

Introducing Direct Services to Beijing, China

For the first time in the history of the airline, SAA will introduce direct flights to Beijing, China; from January next year.

The inaugural flight is scheduled to depart on Tuesday 31 January 2012 from Johannesburg to arrive in Beijing, China; on Wednesday 1 February 2012. These flights are available from today for reservations in the global distribution system (GDS) and via SAA's website, the airline's on-line website.

Introducing direct flights to Beijing is in line with SAA's strategy to expand its network to Asia, the fastest growing market in the world. SAA will operate the route three times a week. The route will be served by the Airbus A340-600 aircraft, which have the capacity to operate the route directly all year round with no passenger payload restrictions. Flying time between Johannesburg and Beijing takes on average 15 hours.

Beijing - Direct Services
Beijing - Direct Services now available from SAA

Beijing is the capital of the People's Republic of China and one of the most populous cities in the world. The city is the country's political, cultural and educational centre and home to the headquarters for most of China's largest state-owned companies.

Johannesburg - Beijing schedule:
Flight SA288
Tuesday, Friday, Sunday
Depart Johannesburg 08h00
Arrive Beijing 04h40*(Following day)

Beijing - Johannesburg schedule:
Flight SA289
Monday, Wednesday, Saturday
Depart Beijing 06h40*
Arrive Johannesburg 15h30*(Following day)

*All times are local. Please note that these slots may change.

Flights to China


Upcoming Events

Cape Town Minstrel Carnival

Cape Town Minstrel image

Every New Year, thousands of minstrels take to the streets in a dazzling display of colourful satin uniforms, shiny parasols, painted faces and foot-tapping banjo tunes that accompany the traditional folk songs, many of Cape Malay origin. The parade is known colloquially as the 'Coon Carnival' ('coon' referring to a member of a minstrel troupe) among the predominately Afrikaans-speaking 'coloured' community who make up the majority of the performers. The traditional event has its origins in the 19th century when minstrel entertainers on American cruise ships stopped off in Cape Town; their sounds and styles were incorporated into the New Year festivals of the newly freed Malay slaves.

The Carnival begins in the new year and the festivities continue into January with extravagant street parades; singing, dancing, costume competitions and marches through the streets from the central city area of District Six.

J&B Met

J&B Met image

One of the most prestigious and anticipated events on Cape Town's social calendar, the J&B Met is not only about thoroughbreds, but is a day of glamorous fashion, entertainment and sophistication, accompanied by J&B Scotch Whiskey. The R1.5-million prize money is in keeping with its status as the premier horseracing event in South Africa, and the Official After Party is a highly rated post-race event that continues the festivities well into the early hours.

Date: 28 January 2012


SAA Voyager and Avis rentals:

SAA Voyager Promotion

Avis Summer Fun

Rent between 01 October 2011 and 31 December 2011 and earn 500 Voyager Miles for weekend rentals on qualifying rates. You must book an Avis weekend car rental through, and you can stand a chance to win 1 of 5 Macbook Air notebooks.

Book now

*Terms and Conditions apply

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