South African Airways (SAA) Named “Top Producing Airline” by South African Tourism at Its 4th Annual Ubuntu Awards

30 April 2013

SAA Recognized for Helping to Increase Tourism Arrivals, and for its Long-Standing Commitment to the North American Market 

Fort Lauderdale, FL – South African Airways (SAA), Africa’s most awarded airline, was honored with the “Top Producing Airline” award at the 4th Annual South African Tourism Ubuntu Awards in New York City on April 15th.  The Ubuntu Awards celebrate travel providers that excel at promoting travel to South Africa.

The airline was recognized for contributing to the growth of travel to the destination through a number of initiatives, as well as its extensive route network that offers the most flights from the U.S. to South Africa, and an array of destinations to connect to from its hub in Johannesburg.  Its award-winning on-board service and luxurious lounges complement its route network, providing North American customers with a world-class product that makes one of the longest flights in the world fly by. And its existent and new code share partnerships with United Airlines, JetBlue Airways, US Airways and Air Canada provide a large number of convenient options for travelers originating from throughout North America.

Behind the scenes, the airline’s vigorous promotion of tourism to South Africa through marketing, public relations and trade support resulted in the destination receiving added exposure that complemented South African Tourism’s efforts. As part of Team South Africa, the airline also partners with the South African diplomatic corps and related organizations, such as Wines of South Africa, to champion cultural and industry efforts, and it supports a number of charitable organizations that perform work in South Africa.

“This award is a true testament to the commitment, support and collaboration between South African Tourism and SAA in promoting the destination over the past year,” said Todd Neuman, executive vice president, North America, for South African Airways. “As South Africa’s national airline, we take our mission of promoting travel to South Africa seriously, and we’re pleased that SA Tourism has recognized SAA in this regard.  We know that there was competition for this award, and so we’re especially proud of this acknowledgment.”

Despite increasing competition for destination tourism from the North American market and a challenging industry environment, South African Airways continues to forge new partnerships that are meant to grow the airline’s presence and tourism arrivals to South Africa. SAA also continues to study and implement new and innovative ways to support members of the trade who sell travel to Africa by providing them with the tools, resources and attractive fare products to grow their businesses while also growing tourism.

The airline received its award from show host and renowned South African event planner and designer Colin Cowie, who praised the airline’s services based on his personal experiences.

“It was especially gratifying to accept our award from a valued customer of ours, and in the company of so many esteemed partners who share our goal of growing the tourism market in South Africa,” added Neuman. “We congratulate each and every one of them for their well-deserved recognition.”

Other winners of the Ubuntu Awards include:

Top Producing Online Agency:Expedia
Friend of South Africa:Paul Simon
Top Producing Tour Operators:Grand Circle Travel and Lion World Tours
Top Producing Franchise:American Express Travel
Best Value for Money Packages:Grand Circle Travel
Outstanding Achievement in Creative Destination Marketing:African Adventure Consultants
Outstanding Achievement in Destination Promotion by a DMC:Dragonfly and Grosvenor Tours
Outstanding Achievement in Group Travel Programs:Mann’s Travel
Outstanding Achievement in Innovative Travel Programs:Immersion Journeys
Outstanding Achievement in Creative Partnerships:African Travel
Philanthropic Award:Collette Vacations