Airlink suspends flights between Johannesburg and Luanda
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Airlink has suspended flights between Johannesburg and Luanda following the Angolan government’s decision to close its borders to South Africa, Namibia, Mozambique, Botswana, eSwatini, Zimbabwe and Tanzania.
This is one of the many flights cancelled recently due to the detection of the new coronavirus variant, Omicron, in South Africa. Several countries have imposed strict travel bans on South Africa and other African destinations ahead of the peak summer season.
Airlink CEO and managing director, Rodger Foster, said they respect the Angolan government to implement the travel ban.
“While we are disappointed on behalf of our customers who are being inconvenienced, we must respect the decision by the Angolan authorities. However, we look forward to resuming our regular service as soon as possible.
"Affected customers should contact their booking agent if the booking was made with an agent or Airlink on +27 11 451 7300 (press “1” for Reservations).
"Customers in Angola should contact Airlink’s GSA, Gitu Kiame-Viagens, at the Luanda Airport office on +244 932 430 052," he said.
Airlink will be offering a number of repatriation flights from Tuesday, November 30. The other flights will take place on Sunday, December 5, and thereafter on Thursday and Sunday each week until the repatriation requirement has normalised.
Call for the lifting of travel bans
The travel industry wants the bans lifted immediately, even though some have called them temporary. In his keynote address on Sunday night, President Cyril Ramaphosa called the travel bans against South Africa and other African countries “unjustified”.
“These restrictions are unjustified and unfairly discriminate against our country and our southern African sister countries. The prohibition of travel is not informed by science, nor will it be effective in preventing the spread of this variant," he said.