Airports company South Africa prepared ahead of travel peak season
Airports Company South Africa is well-prepared for the travel peak season and has ensured operational readiness across its network of airports.
April 20, 2017
By Kelsea Koh
Despite passenger traffic spikes over the holiday period, Airports Company South Africa has put in place plans to ensure that it delivers a world class service for its passengers during this busy time.
During spikes in numbers of people making their way to the airport, some procedures may take longer than usual. Therefore airport users are encouraged to arrive at the airport earlier than usual.
To ensure the uptime of these services, Airports Company South Africa works closely with its airline partners and all relevant stakeholders across its airport operations. This collaboration is conducted through airport forums and the well-established airport management centres (AMC) at the larger airports where a collective decision process ensures facilities are adequately resourced and maintained. Facilities and services are also monitored through regular service standard surveys and on-the-ground inspections at our airports to be ready at any time for the influx of people coming through.
As the safety and security of all passengers and customers using the airports’ facilities, along with their property, is of paramount importance for Airports Company South Africa, each of the nine airports works closely with security and government agencies to conduct regular patrols, random searches, and passenger profiling.
Airports Company South Africa emphasizes the importance of vigilance for any signs of criminal activity and to mitigate security threats by keeping personal belongings close by at all times. Passengers are also encouraged to report any unusual or criminal behaviour to the police or security personnel at the airport.
Every airport has been planning to accommodate the changes in passenger and customer traffic during the festive season to ensure readiness. Some of these plans include:
- At Cape Town International Airport:
- With an influx of tourists coming into Cape Town, there is a focus on allocating resources to hot spots in the terminal and other areas
- There are regular interaction platforms with the rest of the value chain to ensure alignment of processes
- An increase in trolley resources have been put in place
- Role clarification awareness programmes are running in the event of emergencies
- As always, aviation security and SAPS are vigilant in and around the airport precinct
- Teams are focused on ensuring that all passengers experience a seamless end-to-end process
- At East London airport:
- All staff leave plans for this period were assessed to ensure adequate key resources are in place for the entire period
- At George Airport, which has received additional flights from several airlines for the festive season:
- There are two baggage carousels in operation, due to the traffic increase
- Pick up luggage at airside takes place before entering the arrivals terminal as an enhanced security measure
- High visibility of Security and SAPS at the terminal building and parking to ensure the same level of efficiency is maintained
- Airport staff and security teams will all be working overtime during the festive period, as will the police who will ensure heightened visibility of its dog unit.
- Four self-service devices have recently been installed at the terminal to assist passengers and minimise queues at the counters
- The traffic department will be on alert to ensure congestion in the area is avoided
- At Port Elizabeth:
- The management team will be on duty during the festive season with 24 hours operation
- Security and SAPS will provide support required to handle increases in passengers
- At O.R. Tambo International Airport:
- The airport has operational contingency plans in place and is working in close collaborations with various stakeholders to ensure that passenger experience is exceeded
- As the airport gears up for the peak season, staff will increase their working hours based on demand
- Security services will be on high alert during the festive season and will be working closely with SAPS, other security agencies and various stakeholders to ensure passenger safety
- At King Shaka International Airport:
o Our Teams will be on duty during the long weekend to ensure all services are operating
o We have ensured that service providers for essential services such as lifts and escalators will be on site should there be any disruptions
o Our emergency team is on standby should there be any major disruptions or delays
o Security services and agencies are all standby and on high alert due to the major influx of passengers during this time
o We will work closely with our airline partners at the AMC to ensure delays are promptly managed collectively by all stakeholders
o Passengers are encouraged to come to the airport earlier than usual to conduct all airport requirements and to avoid any long queues
o Airport users are encouraged to be very vigilant with their luggage and personal items when at the airport and should report any suspicious activity to the SAPS or security check point at the airport