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Deflation in flight prices

2 Jan 2009 flights
surveyed on 6 Dec 2008

Today, for the first time, we look at flight prices in 2009 - in particular, one-way flights on the 2nd Jan 2009, scheduled to leave Cape Town between 1344 & 2031. The bad news is that the cheapest flight (Kulula) is over a thousand rand, the good news is that this is actually cheaper than the same time last year! As was the case in December 2007, Mango is sold out of airline tickets.

Flights from Cape Town to Durban
Coaches from Cape Town to Durban

British Airways economy class
leaves CPT 1850, arrives DUR 2045

R 1322
flight BA6313

Baz Bus (7 day pass)

R 1200

Kulula.com economy class
leaves CPT 1850, arrives DUR 2045

R 1009
MN6313

Citiliner coach

R 410

Mango Airlines economy class

sold out

City to City coach

R 410

1time Airline economy class

no flights

Greyhound coach

R 600

SAA economy class
leaves CPT 1715, arrives DUR 1915

R 1234
flight SA620

SA Roadlink coach

R 799

SAA businesss class
British Airways business class

R 2815
R 3294

Translux coach

R 570

cockpit of a Kulula plane

Once again, Mango Airlines is sold out during the festive season

For the first time since the 21 Dec 2007 flight survey, Mango Airlines is sold out on the Cape Town to Durban flight route. Interesting that Mango Airlines is sold out of flights for the second holiday season again, and this suggests a lack of commercialism within the company. Mango have been running a number of special discounts (e.g. its partnership with Nu Metro and its half-price sale at the end of November), which have ensured that instead of getting top dollar for their flights they have have been offloading them at low prices. Now those airlines with flights left can demand over R1000 for one-way flights, whilst Mango loses out.

Flight price deflation

Isn't it great when you're earning the same and prices are actually decreasing! Over the last year we measure flight price inflation at -2% (minus 2%, i.e. flight prices have decreased by 2%), meaning that actually deflation is being experienced in the airline industry. We think 2 factors are playing a major role in this - the fall in the oil price and the drop in demand for flights as a result of a slowdown in the economy. The drop in flight prices is lower than the 26% decrease in the oil price over the last year - the oil price is currently R427 ($41) per barrel as compared to R577 ($84) a year ago, meaning that there's possibly more scope to drop flight prices.

Kulula's third 1009

Interestingly, this is the third survey in a row of Cape Town - Durban flights that Kulula has quoted R1009 for a ticket.

SA Roadlink charging R799

Whilst all the bus companies (except Baz Bus) are setting record high prices for coach trips from Cape Town to Durban, SA Roadlink takes the cake with its price of R799 for a one-way trip.

Blog of the week : DC Steph in Stellenbosch (& Hermanus)

(We had to remove the link to this blog as it stopped working) As part of her master's course Steph's been visiting Stellenbosch university (her second time to South Africa now). During her time she got to see and hear the great Desmond Tutu speak about the situation in Zimbabwe, went wine-tasting around Stellenbosch, ate a traditional Zimbabwean meal, visited Robben Island, saw whales in Hermanus (see photo), and went for dinner in Long Street (which reminds Steph of Bourbon Street in New Orleans) and visited Kirstenbosch gardens. Steph took some lovely photos, and is a worthy winner of our blog of the week. She has also written some interesting blog entries since leaving South Africa.

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