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 Post subject: Re: SANParks announces successful operator for Skukuza Airpo
Unread postPosted: Thu Aug 22, 2013 3:32 pm 
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Lesego wrote:

Rodger Foster, Airlink’s CEO responded by saying his company is delighted to be in the consortium and looking forward to delivering scheduled air services to Skukuza, and access to all lodges within the Skukuza precinct. This is going to make travelling to the Kruger National Park simpler and affordable.



It mentions scheduled trips so think it will be for both.


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 Post subject: Re: SANParks announces successful operator for Skukuza Airpo
Unread postPosted: Fri Aug 23, 2013 10:12 am 
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Here is an answer to your question Stark: Direct Kruger flights to launch

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 Post subject: Re: SANParks announces successful operator for Skukuza Airpo
Unread postPosted: Fri Aug 23, 2013 3:27 pm 
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Thanks DB. :)

If done right, this could be a good benefit for SANParks and for far-flung travelers and the private reserve crowd. (The Starks are guilty on both counts)

We'd certainly take advantage of flying into the park as opposed to one of the outlying airports. Buy our supplies at Skukuza, stay the first night in SA in the park, rent our car there, and not have to rush to the airport on our last day. I'm sure it will make SANParks travels to and from the park for business far easier as well.

I do understand the concern for noise pollution, but twice-daily flights on what will most likely be smaller planes (if they're anything like the ones flying into Nelspruit) shouldn't be that bad, IMO. It sounds like it is also using current facilities that are just being fixed up so environmental impact should be small.

I hope the winning bidder utilizes the local communities to build jobs.

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Last edited by Stark on Fri Aug 23, 2013 4:33 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: SANParks announces successful operator for Skukuza Airpo
Unread postPosted: Fri Aug 23, 2013 4:30 pm 
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Hugh............the 30 seater Airlink turbo props fly from Joburg to Phala, and are not very noisy. :thumbs_up:

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 Post subject: Re: Skukuza airport
Unread postPosted: Wed Oct 30, 2013 12:30 pm 
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There are some details about the Skukuza Airport included in today's media release.

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 Post subject: Re: Skukuza airport
Unread postPosted: Sun Nov 17, 2013 7:03 pm 
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We flew Airlink into/out off Nelspruit/Kruger airport a couple of weeks ago. The Airlink magazine on board mentioned once daily from Joburg & Durban and twice daily flights from Capetown starting up. I priced a random date return Jo'burg flight next year online and it was R3280, not quite double the cheapest to MPQ.

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 Post subject: Re: Skukuza airport
Unread postPosted: Mon Nov 18, 2013 1:08 am 
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We are looking at flying into Skukuza Airport in August next year. Silly question but how do you then get to Skukuza camp? I am assuming there is some sort of shuttle service? My other concern is the timing as we will be arriving on a Saturday at 10.50am and the Avis people finish 12pm. I am tempted just to fly into KMIA and get a car from there.
From an international tourist point of view being able to get off a plane at JB and onto another to fly straight to Kruger is a good thing. I have been to SA a couple of times before and driven all over the place but this time I just wanted to take the more relaxing option.


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 Post subject: Re: Skukuza airport
Unread postPosted: Tue Nov 19, 2013 12:47 pm 
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I suspect that Avis will have your vehicle available at the airport. The airport is but four or so km from the main entrance and the airport will be a good source of business for Avis with self drive guests flying in.

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 Post subject: Re: Skukuza airport
Unread postPosted: Tue Nov 19, 2013 2:53 pm 
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I would like to think that will be more than one car hire option available, besides Avis, and if there are a number of flights each day, their car hire hours would surely increase to accommodate arrivals.
Lets wait and see.


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 Post subject: Re: Skukuza airport
Unread postPosted: Tue Nov 19, 2013 8:33 pm 
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I think Avis has a monopoly on in-park car rentals. :(

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 Post subject: Re: Skukuza airport
Unread postPosted: Mon Dec 09, 2013 5:15 pm 
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Hi All,

I would also like to know what the situation is for transferring arriving guests from the airport to Skukuza rest camp. I am arriving into Skukuza airport on 30th October next year and I will be looking to rent a car from Avis to drive to Lower Sabie where I am booked in.

Does any fellow mite know any more info in addition to the links above. The SA airlink site doesn't really give much away either :roll:

Quote:
Just a question.. How large will these planes be? If coming from CT or JHB they must be a fair size and I was just wondering about the sound polution ??


@ Hugh, the planes operated on this route are Embraer ERJ135's, a 37 seat small regional jet plane.

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 Post subject: Re: Skukuza airport
Unread postPosted: Sun Dec 15, 2013 1:45 pm 
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bert wrote:
Imo not needed. Nelspruit is near enough
Couldn't disagree more. Closing Skukuza was a big mistake, I'm glad it is finally being reopened to scheduled flights. I used to fly in and out all the time. Within a minute of exiting the airport you would be on a game drive. Compare that to KMIA. It is fortunate that Skukuza remained open to charters, so I could still use it from time to time.

KMIA is only located where it is because they could find nowhere else flat enough to build that runway, which has proven to be far longer than needed. The airport is the biggest white elephant south of the Sahara. Passenger numbers are low and falling, the reopening of Skukuza will only reinforce that trend.

Tourists, tour operators and travel agents all understand the value of flying passesngers directly to where they want to go, instead of to a place called Primkop, which is 50 to 100 kilometers away from anything remotely of interest.

Johan


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 Post subject: Re: Skukuza airport
Unread postPosted: Thu Feb 20, 2014 11:00 pm 
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"Fedair has resumed its service from OR Tambo International Airport, Johannesburg, to Skukuza Airport in the Kruger National Park.

This follows the reopening of the airport, which closed last month for renovations.

Fedair offers two daily return flights, servicing private game lodges that make use of the Skukuza airstrip.

Airlink announced last year that it would launch direct flights to Skukuza from Cape Town and Johannesburg in June.
"

Source: http://www.tourismupdate.co.za/NewsDetails.aspx?newsId=71637

For those of you who think this is such a bad idea: Comair used to serve Skukuza with two daily commercial flights from JNB for many many years. It wasn't the end of the world, not even of the KNP. In fact, the disturbance was minimal, I doubt many people even noticed.

For those of you flying in and renting a car: Avis used to have offices both at Skukuza and the airport. If the latter does not reopen, I'm sure you will be met by a representive and given your vehicle at the airport. Other rental companies will no doubt drop off and pick up cars too. When I rented from others than Avis, I would upon departure just leave the unlocked car at the airport with the keys inside. That worked well then, but it is probably no longer a good idea. Not even in Kruger!

Johan


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 Post subject: Re: Skukuza airport
Unread postPosted: Sat Feb 22, 2014 10:16 am 
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It would be a huge help for us, after traveling and not sleeping for 49 hours to get to Kruger the last thing we want to do is add on an hour drive from KMIA to the gate.


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 Post subject: Re: Skukuza airport
Unread postPosted: Sat Feb 22, 2014 10:22 am 
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Stark wrote:
It also means I get to spend my last day in the park without having to rush out.
Exactly.

I used to take a leisurely morning drive from wherever I was staying down to Skukuza, stop briefly at camp for a bite to eat or so, and then drive to the airport early afternoon to catch my flight to JNB.

I recall leaving Satara as the gates opened one drizzly Saturday. I was first car down the road, and as I passed Tshokwane a guy in a rainsuit jumped out from behind a bush and flagged me down. He wanted to visit the Skukuza post office and needed a ride. Sure, no problem. As soon as I had agreed, half a dozen friends of his popped out from the bushes, they also wanted to "visit the post office". That post office was about to experience its busiest Saturday in years! I was driving a Toyota Venture (yeah, this was years ago), so had no problems squeezing them all in. I did emphasize that I would be driving at game drive speed, not racing to camp. That was fine with them, and it turned out they were absolutely delighted at each and every sighting. We saw lots of lions, cheetahs at Olifantsdrinkgat, etc. These people all worked at Tshokwane, some of them had been there for many years, yet it was like they were on their first game drive ever. We had lots of fun.

That was not the only time I've noticed that hitchhiking Kruger staff enjoy the game viewing. Many of them spend all their time within the confines of the camp where they work, and see people, not animals. The shuttle bus that takes them to and from work drives at breakneck speed and stops for nothing, so their opportunities for game viewing are less than minimal.

Back to Skukuza airport. Another advantage that should not be underestimated is what happens if your incoming flight is delayed. That will hopefully not happen often, but if it does you will still arrive inside the park. If you are late arriving at KMIA or Hoedspruit, you are faced with the problem of racing for the gate. This gate may be closed by the time you arrive, or there may no longer be sufficient time to get to the camp where you have booked your first night’s stay. If you arrive at Skukuza you are automatically in, and your transfer or vehicle will be waiting for you.

Johan


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