DEPARTMENT: PUBLIC ENTERPRISES
REPUBLIC OF SOUTH AFRICA
QUESTION FOR WRITTEN REPLY
DATE OF PUBLICATION: 23 March 2010
828. Mr G R Krumbock (DA) to ask the Minister of Public Enterprises:
(1) Why are the prices of the South African Airways (SAA) two to three times higher than those of any other airline in the country during the 2010 Fifa World Cup Soccer tournament;
(2) whether her department has calculated the impact that the increased airfares chargedby SAA may have on the number of potential tourists who would be prepared to travel to South Africa during the tournament; if not, why not; if so, what are the relevant details? NW961E
(1) SAA is not increasing all of its domestic fares for the World Cup There is no marked difference between fares offered during the World Cup and outside the World Cup period. When SAAs published fares are compared with other airlines, it becomes evident that SAA is cheaper as compared to other domestic carriers. The fares displayed on the web are not necessary the average fares as the airline offers various discounted (cheaper) packages to tour operators. The national airline is constrained on match days and once capacity opens up the airline will then be able to discount prices further.
The majority of the fares have in fact decreased year–on-year due to currency effects on the Rand along with the effects of the recession which still impacts on operations. These limited increases are to help offset the higher cost of running a 24-hour operation, which SAA has planned for the duration of the World Cup. Despite this increase, SAA is offering some of the least-expensive fares available locally.
(2) SAA will make tickets, which were reserved for Match, the official ticketing agency of FIFA, as part of a deal at the most desirable peak times before and directly after matches, available to the public at reduced and affordable competitive rates. This is due to SAA no longer proceeding with an agreement with Match to provide seats on the airline’s aircraft for the ticketing agency. The decision not to proceed with the Match deal follows the inability of the two parties to agree on the terms and provisions of the contract. SAA briefed the Portfolio Committee on Public Enterprises on 16 March 2010 and its presentation is attached.