Discount airlines in Africa
This article is a travel topic
This is one of several Wikitravel articles about Discount airlines.
African air travel only accounts for three percent of total air traffic, however a number of quality airlines have emerged in more developed countries, some even 70 years ago. With the change in air travel, African skies have also changed. There are now a number of low-fare airlines in Africa, especially in North Africa and Southern Africa.
Air traffic in Central and West Africa is still very unstable and many airlines appear on the market, only to dissolve a few month later. This is why there has not been a development of reliable airlines until today. With the change in politics and fewer wars in Africa, this might become possible in the future.
There are also heavy restrictions in many African countries, making it difficult for airlines to set up operations to other countries within Africa and to provide good connections within the continent.
The discount airlines described below are stable and safe. Although many people think that low-fare airlines are not as safe as others, especially in Africa, this is not true. Cheap prices are created by having less service, no drinks and food for free on board and faster turn-around times.
Many of the local airlines have online specials and/or discounted rates if you book flights on their website. Most of the local carriers have the "E-Ticket" option which is cheaper. This means that you will not be sent a printed ticket, but you will be able to check in with your passport or identity document directly at the check-in counter on the day of the flight.
While there are many travel agents in South Africa who advertise that they specialise in discounted tickets, it is still often cheaper to book direct with the airline or on their website.
- Kulula.com  was the first sub-Saharan low-fare airline. It is based in Johannesburg, South Africa and operates to domestic destinations, like Cape Town, Durban, Port Elizabeth and the Kruger Mpumalanga Airport near Nelspruit and the Kruger National Park. it recently started flights to Harare in Zimbabwe and Windhoek in Namibia from Johannesburg. It uses leased aircraft from Safair. It is the daughter company of South African airline Comair , which is an affiliate of British Airways.
- 1 Time  is also based in Johannesburg and in strong competition with kulula.com. The airline also operates flights within the country, its main destinations being Cape Town, Durban and George. Sadly, 1 Time airlines have filed for Business termination on 6th November 2012 and have gone into provisional liquidation.
- Mango  is a new low cost airline backed by South African Airways. Launched on 31 October 2006, it flies between Johannesburg, Cape Town, Durban and Bloemfontein.
These airlines are reliable and offer low fares. You should, however, be sure to check prices at other South African airlines and keep in mind that you will have to face a lower service level when flying low-fare. Some of the other airlines do have special discount fares at some times: