For The People

Flights fares sky high

With South Africa’s economy being down rated to junk status in 2017 by Standard and Poor’s (S&P) and Fitch’s Ratings contributes to the increments of petrol and food prices. South Africa’s long-term foreign-currency issuer default rating went down from “stable” to “negative”. With SA Airline’s sister, SA Express going through financial difficulties as some planes are being grounded and their parts being used for other planes, this goes to show how hard the South African Airways has it.

 Flyers have complained that they would book flights from Kimberley to different cities only to pay exorbitant amounts for a half empty plane. Travel Start explains that this is due to a low demand of flights which drives up the prices, hence airlines use smaller aircrafts as it will cost them less to operate a smaller aircraft for a smaller number of passengers. But when the cost is divided amongst the passengers it results in them paying those exorbitant amounts.

Travel Start agency charged Kim-Cape town R2 599 for time schedule (8:15-9:50)  and South African Airways direct flight charged R6 058.47 for time schedule (07:30-12:05) .

Traveling agent for flight center, Merissa Strauss explains that the amount is dependent on the class and on when the ticket is bought.

“The amount for flights is dependent on the class and when the ticket is bought. For instance, you can find a Cape Town to Kimberley flight for R2500 depending on if the lower levels are still available”.

Thami Sello’s business forces him to travel a lot and his mode of transport is an aeroplane, he too complains of the exorbitant amounts he has to depart with when flying to Cape Town, for example.

“I am an artist and I travel a lot but I am really struggling to find cheaper flights even though people say they are available. I can easily end up paying R5000 for a flight to Cape Town from Kimberley”.

The 15% vat increase resulted in the rise in business costs, including traveling costs.

The South African rand has been yo-yoing for the past few years. As a result, agents in South Africa report that in 2018 there has been a decline in business and leisure bookings compared to 2017.

Airlines will charge more for flights on days when there is high demand. Generally speaking, when booking flights from Durban to Johannesburg, Friday and Sunday will be the most expensive. Most people fly on these days if they are traveling for a weekend away, a concert, a short holiday, or an event.

The cheapest month to fly to and from Kimberley is currently March with July being the most expensive month. Thursday is to be the most economical day to take a flight to and from Kimberley leaving Tuesday to be the most costly and flights in the evening are likely to offer the best value for money for your Kimberley trip. It might mean rescheduling your working days, but either that, or coughing up the cash.

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