South African Airways has cancelled a number of domestic and international flights over the coming week, to preserve finances, just a day after insisting that operations to all destinations were continuing as normal.

The flag-carrier says that, as part of a “responsible strategy to conserve cash”, it is cancelling several domestic flights from Johannesburg to Cape Town and Durban between 20-24 January, and is “working closely” with sister airline Mango to “reaccommodate passengers” on alternative services.

SAA has also cancelled some international flights from Johannesburg to Munich between 20-25 January. Affected passengers will be reaccommodated on SAA flights to Frankfurt and London Heathrow, and on Star Alliance partners’ services to Munich.

South African Airways aircraft

Source: Airbus

SAA has been operating under a business rescue scheme

“These decisions are in line with SAA’s usual policy of reviewing flights and consolidating services with low demand,” says the airline, which is undergoing a restructuring programme after voluntarily entering business rescue in December.

“Furthermore, during the current process of business rescue, these cancellations represent a responsible strategy to conserve cash and optimise the airline’s position ahead of any further capital investment.”

SAA adds that consolidation on the Cape Town route was also necessitated by its operation of Airbus A350-900 training flights, which “resulted in temporary surplus capacity on the route”. The airline says it will be “reviewing further possible flight schedule amendments over the coming days”.