This Could Get Weird: South African Taxi Drivers Launch Their Very Own Airline
September 20, 2011 at 9:29 AM
Oh boy this sounds like a slice of travel hell just waiting to happen. Officials from South Africa’s taxi industry are planning to get into the airline business, and even the organizers of the new airline are calling their new venture a “unique traveling experience.” The operators of these mini-bus type taxi services are probably best known for their less than friendly battles—that even sometimes turn violent—over routes, territory, and turf. Let’s just hope the airline stuff remains pretty peaceful.
They want to link locals to areas of the country considered a little less accessible, along with giving those who have maybe never boarded a plane the opportunity to do so. Everything will be run by the South African National Taxi Council, and they’re going with Santaco Airlines. Apparently the taxi industry is trying to clean up its image a little bit, so hopefully the new carrier is a step in the right direction.
Taxi drivers—and soon to be pilots—have raised some cash, and it looks like they’ve already picked out one of their first new routes. The plan is to fly out of Lanseria Airport—a little above Johannesburg—over to Bhisho. They will partner up with a couple other existing flight businesses, which is good, because we were thinking that they didn’t just have some airplanes hanging around. Right now there’s no official launch date, but it sounds like they’re determined to get things off the ground sooner rather than later.