WATCH: Excitement as SAA resumes Johannesburg to Perth flights

Flights from Johannesburg to down under have resumed, much to the delight of SA expats. Picture: X

Flights from Johannesburg to down under have resumed, much to the delight of SA expats. Picture: X

Published Apr 29, 2024


South African Airways has resumed direct flights between Perth and Johannesburg amid demand from business travellers and expatriates.

South African Airways (SAA) is marking its grand return to Perth with a series of celebrations in both South Africa and Australia.

The airline's first relaunched flight departed from Johannesburg's OR Tambo International Airport on the evening of Sunday, April 28, and will touchdown at Perth Airport on Monday, April 29, around midday, Australian Western Standard Time.

South Africans in Perth were there to document the moment:

These were some of the reactions on social media.

— SAA - South Africa (@flysaa) April 28, 2024

Expat Bruno Fynn, who now lives in Perth had this to say:

“Personally, it’s fantastic news as it is so much more convenient to visit our loved ones in South Africa. I Flew 20 times direct to SA pre Covid. Losing direct flights and having to fly via other destinations with stopovers, turned a +-12 hr flight into a 24 hr flight, sometimes with delays. For older travellers like myself to visit family for whatever reason this is the best news ever. Cmon SAA - we can do it long term”!

According to Southern and East African Daily Tourism Update at the launch function of SAA’s reintroduced three flights per week flights between Johannesburg and Perth, chairperson of the interim board of SAA, Derek Hanekom and the Deputy High Commissioner for Australia to South Africa, David Geyer, mentioned the strong business relations between the two countries.

“Australia is the sixth-largest non-SADC visitor to South Africa. Together we spend R40 billion (€1.9bn) in goods and services every year, and have R150 billion (€7.4bn) invested in each other.

“Last year, about 100,000 Australians visited South Africa.”

Geyer recalled the history of the Perth route, first implemented as ‘The Wallaby Route’ in 1957 when it took about 24 hours to fly from Johannesburg to Mauritius, the Cocos Islands and onward to Perth.

Adding her voice in agreement about the importance of the Jo’burg-Perth route for the sake of fostering trade and tourism ties between South Africa and Australia, Judy Nwokedi, chairperson of the Gauteng Tourism Authority, said it was important for Brand South Africa.

She said the flight between the two cities could be used to tap into symbiotic business potential, including tourism growth.

IOL Travel