SA Airways, JetBlue in codeshare pact


31 July 2013

South African Airways (SAA) and US airline JetBlue Airways have struck a codeshare agreement to seamlessly connect the two carriers’ African and North American networks via New York’s John F Kennedy International Airport, Washington’s Dulles International and Johannesburg’s OR Tambo International.

The partnership, an expansion of an interline agreement first inked in 2010, will allow customers to purchase a single ticket combining SAA- and JetBlue-operated flights and enjoy day-of-travel conveniences such as one-stop check-in and baggage transfer.

JetBlue said in a statement on Wednesday that it intends to place its “B6” code on South African Airways-operated flights between the US and both Johannesburg and Dakar, Senegal, as well as on connecting flights to select South African destinations beyond Johannesburg, including Cape Town, Durban, East London and Port Elizabeth.

Tickets will be available for sale at a later date, pending regulatory and government approvals.

Billed as “the fastest way to more of South Africa and southern Africa”, SAA flies non-stop each day between New York and Johannesburg’s OR Tambo International Airport, and daily between Washington and Johannesburg via Dakar’s Leopold Sedar Senghor International Airport.

South African Airways has had a similar arrangement in place with JetBlue since 2011, placing its “SA” code on JetBlue-operated flights from its US gateways to top destinations including Boston, Chicago, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, and Fort Lauderdale and Orlando, Florida.

“We are excited to expand our successful relationship with South African Airways through this new codeshare via Washington and JFK, where JetBlue is the number one domestic airline,” said Scott Laurence, JetBlue’s vice-president of network planning and partnerships.

“South African has been a terrific travel partner for JetBlue, consistently delivering a great experience for our customers,” Laurence said. “We look forward to working with them to offer even more travel options in the years to come.”

Marc Cavaliere, SAA’s executive vice-president for North America and Alliances, said SAA’s partnership with JetBlue had been a successful one from the start.

“Our customers have raved about the ease of travel on both airlines,” Cavaliere said. “It was only fitting that we expand the partnership and introduce the JetBlue code onto SAA flights and into the African continent.”

South African Airways is one of the world’s most awarded airlines, recently named Best Airline in Africa for the 11th consecutive year at the World Airline Awards presented by Skytrax.

Via its Johannesburg hub, SAA links the world to most cities and destinations across southern Africa and the Indian Ocean islands, including South Africa, Angola, Botswana, Kenya, Mauritius, Mozambique, Namibia, Tanzania, and Zambia.

At JFK Airport, JetBlue operates from its acclaimed Terminal 5, while SAA operates from the adjacent Terminal 4, allowing for fast and easy connections between flights. At Washington Dulles, both JetBlue and SAA are co-located in Concourse B.

SAinfo reporter