SA Express *G Benefits?

Old Oct 26, 12, 12:20 am
  #1  
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Question SA Express *G Benefits?

Hello,

I am looking to fly SA Express from Jo'burg to Maun (in economy) next year and wanted to check whether I will have any benefits as a *Gold (Lufthansa Senator) card holder. I am really only interested in any extra luggage allowance (I already have Priority Pass lounge access) but can understand if this isn't possible due to the relatively small size of the aircraft etc. However, it would be useful to know exactly what, if anything, I am entitled to. Thanks in advance for any help.

Regards,

Work-Shy

P.S. I usually fly Air Botswana on this route so I will be interested to see how they compare (especially service and punctuality).

Last edited by Work-Shy; Oct 26, 12 at 12:29 am
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Old Oct 26, 12, 12:48 am
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SA Express *G Benefits?

If I remember correctly, SA Express is only a partner airline of SAA, which means full recognition of SAA Voyager status but not *G status. Thus no *G benefits like checkin: I distinctly remember an extremely upset LH senator at JNB who was refused priority checkin.

Fyi, Out at the small airports that's a moot point in any case (even SAA gold means nothing there) since there are no lounges or priority checkin desks (often only 1 desk in total!) or even priority luggage tagging (which sucks if you transfer onto a "normal" flight afterwards: I ended up reusing my priority orange tags from previous baggage tags and the checkin agents were happy with that and quite understanding).
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Old Oct 27, 12, 3:24 pm
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I have a related question:
Are there any stated *G benefits for flights on SA Airlink flights?
I am a UA *G passenger who will be flying in Economy class from CPT - MQP on SA Airlink, and am curious about (1) lounge access in CPT, and (2) extra baggage allowance.

Any advice would be much appreciated!
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Old Oct 27, 12, 3:25 pm
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I have a related question:
Are there any stated *G benefits for flights on SA Airlink flights?
I am a UA *G passenger who will be flying in Economy class from CPT - MQP on SA Airlink, and am curious about (1) lounge access in CPT, and (2) extra baggage allowance.

Any advice would be much appreciated!
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Old Oct 28, 12, 4:27 am
  #5  
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Originally Posted by cgo111 View Post
I have a related question:
Are there any stated *G benefits for flights on SA Airlink flights?
I am a UA *G passenger who will be flying in Economy class from CPT - MQP on SA Airlink, and am curious about (1) lounge access in CPT, and (2) extra baggage allowance.

Any advice would be much appreciated!
AFAIK the same applies. SA Airlink is not a *A airline itself, so no *G benefits.
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Old Oct 28, 12, 5:00 pm
  #6  
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Airlink seems to be even more loosely linked to SAA than SA Express.

The SAA transfer desk just after customs at JNB once refused to print me a boarding card for an Airlink flight (I had no luggage to check), claiming it was "a different airline" that had "nothing to do with them". Confusing when your flight has an SA flight number.

Johan
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Old Oct 28, 12, 9:34 pm
  #7  
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Arrow

Originally Posted by cgo111 View Post
I have a related question:
Are there any stated *G benefits for flights on SA Airlink flights?
I am a UA *G passenger who will be flying in Economy class from CPT - MQP on SA Airlink, and am curious about (1) lounge access in CPT, and (2) extra baggage allowance.

Any advice would be much appreciated!
South African Airlink [4Z] & South African Express [XZ] pseudo-codeshare are considered to be *A flights for Alliance redemption & benefit purposes.

However, baggage may be subject to operational restrictions on smaller A/C types.

[KVS Availability Tool 7.0.8.R1/Diamond - SNT: Awards/StarAlliance/JP-ANA-SP1]
Code:
CPT  Cape Town Intl ZA [FACT]
MQP  Nelspruit Kruger Mpumalanga Intl SA [FAKN]
THU  01 Nov 2012 | 1 Seat

Carrier    Flight  From  Depart    To    Arrive    A/C  St  Availability
---------  ------  ----  --------  ----  --------  ---  --  -------------
SA         8663    CPT   10:00     MQP   12:35     AR8  0   FS/  CS/  YS-
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Old Oct 29, 12, 2:45 am
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I have found the answer to my own question in the final stages of the online booking process:

"SA Express and Airlink are not Star Alliance members, and therefore a different baggage allowance applies than on Star Alliance flights".

Oh well, no extra luggage allowance for me! Thanks for all the help and I hope they make a refreshing (and more reliable) change from Air Botswana.

Work-Shy
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Old Oct 30, 12, 1:36 am
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Thanks to everyone for the feedback. Would anyone happen to know if I could get around the baggage allowance restrictions of 4Z if I book a connecting flight CPT-JNB-MQP, in which the first leg is on SA with clear *G benefits? I'll be traveling in South Africa for about a month, and therefore will have luggage that may exceed the 4Z allowance.
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Old Oct 30, 12, 4:14 pm
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SA Express *G Benefits?

That unfortunately won't work: in JNB your luggage will be offloaded since you need physically carry your own luggage through the customs clearance area before dropping it off again immediately after the customs lane (customs situated between baggage carousels and re-check/drop off area). This is based on customs clearance regulations.

Re-check for SA Express and SA Airlink is actually even more inconvenient since they do not have a re-check facility directly after the customs clearance lane: in stead you would need to go to the normal luggage drop off in the main check in area in terminal A (domestic terminal), in the same place as the "online check in drop off" is. The crux being that at baggage re-check your luggage will be weighed again, irrespective of how or where your luggage came from. Here off course you won't have *G benefits, meaning potential luggage overweight problems.

Sorry for the bad news
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Old Oct 30, 12, 4:15 pm
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SA Express *G Benefits?

Oops, just noticed you said from
CPT. From CPT I would venture a gamble and I suspect you could very well be lucky enough to get it through (90% chance in my estimation).
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Old Oct 30, 12, 8:34 pm
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Thanks, brightshark.

I tried doing a little research on the SA Airlink website, and the baggage policies are a bit cryptic. They do mention a fact regarding "most significant carrier", which may mean that SAA regulations would apply for a connecting flight in which the (first, and longer) CPT-JNB leg is on SA, and the (second, shorter) JNB-MQP leg is on 4Z. Can anyone offer a clear interpretation of this regulation?

Here's the language from the airlink website:

MSC - Most Significant Carrier - Interline tickets - IATA Resolution 302 refers

If you purchase a ticket which is wholly on the services of SA AIRLINK, SA AIRLINK’s baggage policy will apply.

If you purchase an interline no-stop ticket involving more than one carrier, the baggage policy of the MSC will apply per direction of travel. i.e. the first international carrier per direction.

The MSC policy will apply only if a through-check is possible - i.e. no night stop or stopover is permitted however the MSC policy is applied according to the ticket construction so even if a passenger travelling on a “non-stop” ticket, is required to clear luggage at first point of entry in South Africa, the luggage may be considered as “through-checked” in respect of the allowance.


Interline travel in conjunction with SAA flights may result in Piece Concept showing on a ticket whereby SAA allows one piece of luggage in economy class with maximum dimensions of 158cm and weighing a maximum of 23Kg for checked luggage before excess baggage charges shall apply. Please see www.flysaa.com baggage policy for more information on Piece Concept.
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Old Nov 3, 13, 1:24 pm
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Any update on this? I am about to book an Airlink flight and need to know whether I should book C or Y for the luggage if *G does not apply.

I guess Star Benefits is still the rule.
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Old Nov 22, 14, 3:35 pm
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*G benefits with SA Express

What's the current situation? The only thing I'm interested in is lounge access at JNB while transferring from an international SAA flight. Thanks, ps
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Old Apr 15, 15, 5:54 pm
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Well, I was just denied access to the lounge on my flight JNB-WVB, although I booked with SAA, the flight has an SAA number, etc. But apparently, SAA Express is unrelated to SAA, and my *G brings me nothing. Not even priority boarding.
This was my last time SAA Express flight, and my last SAA flight for that matter. Switching to Ethiopian for my African flights.

Last edited by aufmatt; May 14, 15 at 7:40 am
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