​​​​​​​​​​​​​For general enquiries please contact:

Tel: (011) 723 1400 or (011) 921 6262; 

E-mail: ​

For media inquiries ONLY please contact Tulisiwe Mkatshwa at:

​E-mail: or ​


Tue 5 December 2023
Airlink upgrades aircraft at Richard Bay Airport due to growing passenger and cargo demand

Airports Company South Africa (ACSA) congratulates Airlink on the upgrade of their aircraft at Richards Bay Airport, in KwaZulu-Natal, due to increased demand for both passenger and cargo services. pleased to note that regional airline

Airlink will be upgrading to a larger aircraft, transitioning from the 29-seater British Aerospace Jetstream 41 (J41) to the 75-seater Embraer ERJ 170 (E170). The airline currently operates flights between Richards Bay and more than 45 destinations within South Africa.

ACSA has partnered with the Umhlathuze Municipality through a multi-year contract to manage the Richards Bay Airport after it remained closed for close to two years. The partnership will see the transfer of skills among others, as well as bringing much-needed revitalisation of the local economy through the optimisation of the transport infrastructure, where ACSA will play a pivotal role.

The growing demand for passenger and cargo services at Richards Bay Airport has seen Airlink's fleet operating at full capacity, necessitating the upgrade. Since resuming in September 2022

Since the reopening of the airport post-COVID-19, Airlink was the only carrier that returned to operate out of Richards Bay, servicing the Johannesburg-Richards Bay route, out of the three that previously operated from Richards Bay.

ACSA's recovery is largely driven by the rapid turnaround in domestic travel, which underscores the importance of this market's contribution to our business. In October 2023, 2 800 passengers were processed through the airport, which indicates a 230% increase since the airport re-opened its doors for business.

ACSA notes that the aircraft upgrade is not only a milestone for Airlink but also crucial for the airport and the community of uMhlathuze. With the increased seating capacity, there will be more opportunities for travel and enhanced cargo movement.

But of more significance for Airports Company of South Africa, is the alignment with the principles stated in the White Paper on National Civil Aviation Policy:

"Airport development should not be considered in isolation, but be integrated into all national, provincial, and municipal economic and spatial development initiatives. At the same time, airport development should also meet the social needs and objectives of local communities. There should therefore be synergy between airport development and the development strategies of all spheres of government," says ACSA Regional General Manager, Nkosinathi Myataza.

Richards Bay Local Airport Manager, Langa Ndebele says "Richards Bay Airport is an important airport in the region, facilitating the movement of goods and passengers from an economic hub of some considerable force and the role that the airport is playing in the continued economic development of this region is significant.

The commencement of flights to and from Richards Bay is adding positive value to growing businesses in the city and also contributing to the success of the region's leisure and tourism sector."

"This is a positive development that speaks to the robust and steady recovery of the domestic aviation sector. We wish Airlink all the best and may they see further growth and expansion in the future," concludes Mr Ndebele. 


ACSA was appointed by the City of Mhlathuze for the Airport Management Services of Richards Bay Airport, for the term of 5 years starting in May 2021 until April 2026.

Business, Passengers
Sun 3 December 2023
East London's King Phalo Airport affected by municipal power outage

​Airports Company South Africa (ACSA) would like to inform travellers of an ongoing power outage at King Phalo Airport (KPA), in East London in the Eastern Cape, which is impacting its operations and may lead to delays.

King Phalo Airport Local Airport Manager, Nicola Smith says the airport has been without power since midnight Sunday morning (3 December 2023), due to a municipal electricity fault.

"While this is a municipal issue that is beyond ACSA's control, our backup power sources are suppling energy to essential services within the airport, and we hope to have our power restored shortly," says Smith.

Passengers should take note that areas impacted by the outage include parking systems, information boards, as well as  other related operations at the airport.​​

"Passengers should allow for the extra time required to check-in and should arrive at the airport early. We sincerely apologise to our customers for any inconvenience this situation might have caused. We are hard at work to get the situation back to normal," says Smith


Fri 1 December 2023
ACSA reiterates hand baggage regulations at its airports as festive season looms

The aviation industry is rallying behind a crucial initiative by Airport Company South Africa (ACSA) to strengthen hand baggage regulations, aligning them with aviation safety and compliance standards.  These regulations, applicable throughout ACSA’s entire airport network, aim to manage the carriage of hand baggage onto aircraft and identify passengers with non-compliant items before reaching the security checkpoint.  Such passengers will be directed back to check-in counters to transfer their baggage to check-in baggage.

As the festive season approaches, which brings with it a substantial increase in passenger traffic, ACSA wishes to emphasize these regulations.  The objective is not only to efficiently manage the surge in travellers, but also to bolster ACSA’s efforts in combating criminal activities.  The regulations serve as a premeptive measure, flagging potentially illegal or hazardous items in travellers hand baggage. 

“ACSA commends the aviation industry, in particular BARSA and AASA, for their support in this initiative and wishes to notify travellers that, although the regulations are not new, they will be rigorously enforced by ACSA, its partners, and stakeholders.” says Laurene Less, Group Executive: Corporate Services at ACSA.

“The safety of our passengers is of utmost importance to ACSA. As such, the hand baggage regulations are in place to ensure that we can provide the safest possible environment for our visitors and to ensure that they have a seamless experience at our airports.”

“The implementation of these regulations stems from a recognised necessity expressed by domestic airlines to establish consistent controls for the carriage of hand baggage on flights departing from ACSA airports.  This initiative is supported by international airlines, emphasizing the collective advantage of a standardised policy applicable to all flights.  According to George Mothema, CEO of BARSA, ‘this approach ensures a uniform and fair application of policies for all passengers.”

These established principles and procedures are applicable to all flights operating at ACSA airports within South Africa, as well as regional and international flights departing from South Africa.  These regulations are considered essential, not only to uphold hand baggage policies but also to prioritise cabin and flight safety and are in alignment with global best practices.

Aaron Munetsi, CEO of AASA, emphasizes the safety perspective, stating,  “From a passenger safety perspective, the hand baggage regulations aim to identify overweight luggage that could pose risks to both aircraft and passengers.  We strongly encourage compliance with these regulations, as failure to adhere will necessitate redirecting passengers to check-in counters for luggage check-in.  Hand luggage weight checks will be conducted at security points before passengers access the boarding gates.

Due to the regulations, ACSA would like to request passengers to arrive at the airport early to allow for sufficient time to check in their baggage and ensure a seamless travel experience. Should passengers miss their flights because of delays, they are requested to immediately alert their airlines.

According to the regulations, the hand baggage allowance is as follows:

• Economy-class passengers: one bag plus one slimline laptop bag or handbag

• First-class passengers: two bags plus a slimline laptop bag

• Bags may not exceed the total dimensions of 56cm x 36cm x 23cm

• Weight limit per bag: 7kg

• Passengers who exceed the hand luggage limit will be subject to the specific airline’s excess baggage rules.

The reference to a slimline laptop bag means that this bag is of a size and thickness specifically designed to carry a laptop and charger and does not include bags capable of carrying items such as documents, clothes, and other items.

Where an exception to the stated rules is granted by an airline to the passenger, the passenger will be accompanied to the security point by uniformed airline staff who shall confirm such exception to the security officer or official manning the hand baggage control point.

“In line with ACSA’s zero-tolerance approach to criminality, we are confident that our hand baggage regulations will result in the reduction of criminal activities and increase passenger safety during the festive season, while at the same time also ensuring that passengers have a seamless and satisfying experience at our airports,” says Less.



Business, Passengers
Thu 23 November 2023
ACSA receives ACI accolade for Integrated Environment Management System at OR Tambo

Airports Company South Africa (ACSA) has been awarded a shield by the Airports Council International (ACI) for its Integrated Environment Management System at OR Tambo International Airport.

ACSA received the accolade at the recent ACI Africa Environment and Sustainable Development Awards 2023, in the category of Large-Sized Airports, held during the ACI Africa Conference and Exhibition in Dakar, Senegal.

The prestigious aviation industry awards focus on the importance of environmental management in airport business performance and are a platform for airports to showcase their green initiatives to the wider aviation community on the continent.

"We are extremely proud of the fact OR Tambo International Airport's initiatives to operate in a sustainable and environmentally friendly manner, in line with ACSA's sustainability agenda, are being recognised on the international stage," says Jabulani Khambule, the Regional General Manager for ACSA's airport cluster which includes OR Tambo International Airport.

Among the various and wide-ranging sustainability initiatives introduced at OR Tambo International Airport is a programme to reduce its impact on wildlife through the development of procedures that describe and outline techniques to reduce potential bird and wildlife hazards for its airports through wildlife hazard management plans.

ACSA has also implemented a programme of energy efficiency and reduction, as well as various water usage reduction initiatives at the airport. Ongoing engagements are held with the relevant regulators to ensure that the airport remains compliant with its obligations regarding environmental monitoring and reporting.

"Aviation plays an integral part in building a sustainable social, economic and political system, and ACSA has an important role to play in supporting the development, safety and security of our country's people, as well as the sustainability of the natural environment," says Khambule.

"OR Tambo International Airport remains committed to promoting a healthy environment, and to preserving it for the benefit of present and future generations. Our concern about the environment goes to the heart of our focus on sustainability, thus our approach is to continue to entrench sound environmental management philosophies and business practices that will sustain the airport's value into the future. "

The Integrated Environment Management System applies not only to the airport's infrastructure but also to the geographical areas within which it operates its aeronautical business. Khambule notes that by integrating sustainability into OR Tambo International's operational DNA, ACSA has signalled its unwavering determination to generate a positive societal and environmental impact while ensuring its enduring success.

"The recognition that we have received at the ACI Africa Environment and Sustainable Development Awards 2023 bears testimony to the success of the essential projects that were designed and implemented to mitigate the identified environmental risks within our airport's operating environment. This demonstrates the way we use our inputs to secure the sustainability of our airport, contribute to the communities we serve and protect the natural environment in which we operate," says Khambule.

"Last, but not least, I must give recognition to our dedicated OR Tambo International Airport staff who work hard to ensure that we meet the targets set out in our green initiatives and projects to safeguard our natural environment. This award will further motivate us to continue with the important work we do in this area."


Mon 20 November 2023
Alert on Social Media baggage scams

​Airports Company South Africa (ACSA) is issuing a warning to all passengers regarding potential baggage scams circulating on social media platforms. There have been reports of syndicates falsely claiming to sell lost or unclaimed baggage from our airports.

To ensure the authenticity of any such information, passengers are strongly urged to visit our official website at

ACSA emphasises the importance of verifying details through our official channels to avoid falling victim to fraudulent activities.

ACSA remains committed to ensuring the safety and security of all passengers.

Thank you for your corporation. ​


Business, Passengers
Thu 16 November 2023
A joint ACSA-Hawks operation leads to arrest of five suspected drug traffickers

​​The Airports Company South Africa (ACSA) can confirm that a special joint operation between the elite Directorate of Priority Crimes Investigation, also known as the Hawks, resulted in the identification and apprehension of five individuals suspected of drug trafficking, says Jabulani Khambule, the Regional General Manager for ACSA's airport cluster which includes O R Tambo International Airport.

The suspects are employees of various companies operating at O R Tambo International Airport, including two who are ACSA employees. Khambule praised the Hawks and the ACSA team that was involved in the operation noting that the ongoing collaboration between ACSA and law enforcement agencies continues to yield excellent results.

"ACSA and the South African Police Service (SAPS) are dedicated to making our national key points, which include our airport network, safe for all our passengers. We have raised our level of alertness, particularly as we head towards the festive season which is typically accompanied by an increase in the level illicit trade," adds Khambule.

The matter is now in the hand of SAPS who are conducting further investigations. The suspects will appear in court on Friday 17th of November 2023. Questions related to this matter should therefore be directed to SAPS.


For Media Enquiries, please contact

Samukelo Khambule

Internal Communications Specialist

+27 72 577 2678