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South African Airways, the leading carrier on the African continent, celebrates its 80th year of gracing the global skies.

(TRAVPR.COM) SOUTH AFRICA - February 19th, 2014 - South African Airways, the leading carrier on the African continent, celebrates its 80th year of gracing the global skies.

SAA which was founded in 1934 celebrated its 80th anniversary this month.

SAA has faced many changes over its illustrious history and has experienced many highlights and some turbulent times. Through the years, SAA, and its employees have shown extraordinary resilience and capacity for change.

Today, SAA is a modern, technologically advanced airline that flies millions of people every year. SAA has been an award winning airline over the years and recently received, for the 12th consecutive year in a row the 4-Star airline ranking, from Skytrax, the independent, global airline rating organisation. SAA also remains the only carrier on the African continent to achieve this high level 4-Star Airline rating.

The airline’s safety record and its outstanding on-time performance remain key drivers as to why customers choose to fly with SAA.

Apart from SAA celebrating its 80 years of existence, the SAA Group celebrates more achievements this year. SAA’s frequent flyer programme, Voyager, who was one of the first ever frequent flyer programmes in Africa, also celebrates its 20th anniversary this month. SAA’s low cost operator Mango will also be celebrating turning 8 later in the year.

The airline is set for a return to profitability with its Long-Term Turnaround Strategy, Gaining Altitude, in place which sets a long-term view for returning the airline to profitability. The strategy sets five strategic objectives which are: Support for South Africa’s national developmental agenda; To achieve and maintain commercial sustainability; Provide excellent customer service; Achieve consistent, efficient and effective operations and Foster performance excellence.

The Gaining Altitude strategy is well into its implementation phase and specific milestones have been reached. Loss making routes such as Bujumbura and Kigali, have been closed, with the route to Buenos Aires to be closed end of March 2014.

Last year alone SAA implemented five new code share agreements which is a considerable boost to the SAA route network without operating its own aircraft on those routes.


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