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SAA new procedure introduced for travel to and from ebola high-risk areas

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South African Airways would like to advise its customers of the procedures to follow if they must travel between South Africa and the Ebola high-risk areas in West Africa.

“All travellers between South Africa and the Ebola high-risk areas in West Africa must follow the new procedures introduced for the airlines aimed at ensuring compliance with a recent cabinet decision,” said SAA Spokesperson, Tlali Tlali. “The South African Government has advised travellers to avoid all non-essential travel to and from Liberia, Guinea or Sierra Leone. However, where travel is absolutely essential, permission must be obtained from the relevant authority,” he added.

In cases where travel between South Africa and the affected high-risk areas is unavoidable, the following procedures must be followed:

•        All intending travellers must request permission to travel from South Africa to the high risk areas or from the high risk areas to South Africa;

•        Permission to travel must be sought from the National Department of Health;

•        All requests from travellers must be addressed to the Director-General: Health, for the attention of Dr Frew Benson and sent to the following address:

o   Nathoc1@health.gov.za and Nathoc2@health.gov.za;

o   Tel: (012) 395-9367 or (012) 395-9366;

The following information must be provided when requesting permission to travel:

•        Full personal details, including residential addresses of South African citizens or in the case of non-South Africans, the address of residence while in South Africa (ie, hotel, etc.);

•        Next of kin details in the case of South African citizens;

•        Full details of the reasons for travel to or from South Africa;

•        The traveller must complete a Traveller Health Questionnaire and submit it with the request to travel;

•        A written response from the National Department of Health will be provided informing the applicant of the outcome of their request to travel;

“The travel restriction does not apply to all five destinations (Benin, Ghana, Ivory Coast, Nigeria and Senegal) that SAA flies to in West Africa. None of them fall under high-risk category. Our schedule to those destinations remains unaffected,” explained Tlali.

South African Airways remains committed to ensuring the enforcement of National and International health protocols associated with air transport in the interests of its passengers and the destinations it flies to.

We encourage all customers travelling to the West Africa to take the necessary precautions, be vigilant and ensure that their travel documents are in order.

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