FlySafair cancels flights at last minute due to new lockdown rules

FlySafair has cancelled a number of flights on short notice due to new curfew times announced by President Cyril Ramaphosa earlier this week.

A number of FlySafair customers took to social media this morning after they received SMS messages stating that their flights had been cancelled.

Customers were upset about the short notice of the cancellations, with many complaining about having to change their holiday plans due to their flights being cancelled a day before departure.

The message received by FlySafair customers is shown in the screenshot below:

FlySafair cancel SMS

FlySafair acknowledged the problem and attributed it to the new curfew times implemented as part of the revised national lockdown restrictions.

The airline added that all customers affected by these cancellations would receive a full refund or a free flight change.

“Dear customers. Unfortunately, we’ve had to cancel some flights due to the new curfew times,” FlySafair said on Twitter.

“All affected passengers will get a full refund or completely free flight change.”

“This can be done on the manage booking section of our website. Please look out for emails and SMS alerts,” the airline added.

Curfew time interferes with operations

Ramaphosa announced on Monday evening that the national curfew would be expanded from 00:00 – 04:00 to 23:00 – 04:00 daily.

This change means for certain flights, FlySafair is unable to ensure its staff returns home before the curfew is enforced.

In a response to a customer on Twitter, the airline explained the effect of the curfew change on its operations for a 20:45 flight from Durban to Johannesburg.

“Apologies for the inconvenience. Aircraft operate there-and-back so that they can sleep where they are needed to start the next morning’s flights,” the airline said.

“The issue on that pairing isn’t the flight you’re on, but getting the aircraft back. So, unfortunately, the pair is affected.”

FlySafair told MyBroadband that 32 flights were affected by the curfew changes.

FlySafair flight disruption message

Now read: Fears over huge numbers at South Africa’s prime holiday destinations – But bookings are still very low

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FlySafair cancels flights at last minute due to new lockdown rules