South Africa’s most on-time domestic airline of 2015

December 11, 2015

domestic airlines south africa

Airports Company South Africa (ACSA) monitors the on-time performance results of domestic airlines flying in and out of South Africa’s three major airports, OR Tambo International in Johannesburg, Cape Town International, and King Shaka International Airport in Durban. We compiled an on-time performance report for the first half of this year in July. With 2016 just around the corner, we have compiled an end of year on time performance report, to see how South Africa’s domestic airlines have been performing in 2015.

The on-time performance of a flight is measured by comparing the off-block time (the moment when the aircraft pushes back) against the time the flight was scheduled to take off. The International Airlines Transport Association’s (IATA) universal standard benchmark is used to measure the on-time performance. The standard allows for a 15 minute deviation from the scheduled time of departure as an on-time departure. That means that if the aircraft pushes back within 15 minutes of the scheduled departure time, the flight will be judged as an on-time flight. The data we used for the calculations below was collected from 1 January to 30 November 2015.

OR Tambo International Airport, Johannesburg

  1. FlySafair – 93.66%
  2. SA Airlink – 90.14%
  3. South African Airways – 90.13%
  4. Mango – 84.66%
  5. Kulula – 84.46%
  6. British Airways Domestic – 84.19%
  7. SA Express – 77.99%

ACSA airport target 87%

Cape Town International,

  1. SA Airlink – 94.94%
  2. FlySafair – 94.56%
  3. South African Airways – 91.47%
  4. SA Express – 91.14%
  5. Mango – 89.90%
  6. Kulula – 88.44%
  7. British Airways Domestic – 86.38%

ACSA airport target 90%

King Shaka International, Durban

  1. FlySafair – 95.83%*
  2. South African Airways – 94.24%
  3. SA Airlink – 92.58%
  4. Mango – 88.08%
  5. SA Express – 87.73%
  6. Kulula – 86.83%
  7. British Airways Domestic – 81.77%

ACSA airport target 91%


  1. FlySafair – 94.68%
  2. SA Airlink – 92.55%
  3. South African Airways – 91.95%
  4. Mango – 87.55%
  5. Kulula – 86.58%
  6. SA Express – 85.62%
  7. British Airways Domestic – 84.11%

While FlySafair is South Africa’s most on-time domestic airline year to date, the airline had a bit of an advantage over the other airlines flying in and out of Durban. FlySafair only started flying between Cape Town and Durban, and Johannesburg and Durban on the 25th of October 2015*. In the half year report we said that it would be interesting to see what happens to their overall performance once they expanded their network. Flights from Johannesburg and Cape Town to East London and Durban have now been operational for just under two months and the airline’s on time performance has remained very high. We also said that they had an advantage over the other airlines because they operate fewer flights, therefore there is less that can go wrong. But that advantage is now gone, and it is safe to say that FlySafair has proven their worth and they are here to stay.

South African Airways’ on time performance has remained high, despite boardroom troubles and the pilot revolt the airline has had to deal with over the last couple of months. South African Airways also has the most extensive network in South Africa, which makes their on- time performance even more impressive. SAA, Airlink and FlySafair were the only airlines that met the on time performance targets set by ACSA in Cape Town International (90%), OR Tambo International (87%) and King Shaka International (91%). Other than the abovementioned airlines only SA Express managed to reach one of ACSA’s airport targets, Cape Town International’s 90% target. Cape Town International’s overall domestic on-time performance percentage for the year to date is 90.52%, OR Tambo International’s is 87.13%, and King Shaka International’s is 88.47%. Overall 88.71% of South Africa’s domestic flights from South Africa’s three largest airports have left on time in 2015.

In the half year report we said that it would be interesting to see what Skywise and Fly Go-Air’s on-time performance in Johannesburg and Cape Town would be once they start operating on the CPT – JNB route. Since we did that report Fly Go-Air has gone out of business, and Skywise has been grounded by ACSA. The airline industry in South Africa seems to be a tough cookie to crack.

You Might Also Like