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Airlink’s Embraer E195 Takes Flight in Stunning Black Livery

Air Link’s black livery (Photo: Airlink)

Airlink, the prominent regional airline in South Africa, has unveiled a striking addition to its fleet with the introduction of an elegant black special finish on one of its Embraer E195 aircraft. This captivating livery aims to highlight an important innovation while enhancing the airline’s commitment to glamour and style in air travel.

With the registration number ZS-YDE, this aircraft has completed its test flights and will soon begin operating on Airlink’s regular routes. The black livery serves as a visual representation of Airlink’s recently launched Skybucks frequent flyer program, where black represents the highest level of membership.

Previously flying under the registration UR-EMG for Ukraine International, this Embraer E195 joined Airlink’s fleet in April through a lease agreement. After successful test flights in Johannesburg last week, the aircraft has been re-registered as ZS-YDE and now stands as a symbol of elegance and sophistication in Airlink’s fleet.

Airlink’s decision to dress the Embraer E195 in a sleek black livery is aimed at drawing attention to the airline’s recently launched Skybucks frequent flyer program. The Skybucks program offers a range of benefits and rewards for its members, providing an extra level of recognition and appreciation to Airlink’s most loyal passengers.

There are four Skybucks membership tiers, with eligibility determined by the number of sectors or legs of a journey flown in 12 months. The Blue Tier is for customers who have flown less than 18 sectors, the Red is for 18 to 34 sectors, Emerald is for more than 35 sectors, and the Black tier membership is by invitation only. Each tier earns rewards at a different rate, with the higher tiers earning more Skybucks for the same flight at the same fare.

Reviving Glamour in Air Travel

Rodger Foster, the CEO of Airlink, expressed the airline’s commitment to reintroducing glamour and style to the skies. “Some say flying has lost its allure, but as Southern Africa’s premier airline, Airlink is putting glamour and style back in the skies.  In addition to our top-class service provided by our friendly crew in their stylish new uniforms, we have dressed one of our svelte Embraer E-Jets in an elegant and chic little black number,” Roger said.

The airline aspires to create a travel experience that combines exceptional service, stylish aesthetics, and a touch of luxury, all while ensuring the highest standards of safety and efficiency.

The private South African airline officially changed its corporate name from SA Airlink to Airlink in October 2020 in a bold step towards independence which ended its 23-year franchise agreement with South African Airways and began operating and issuing tickets under its own Iata code 4Z. This freed Airlink and enabled it to forge business relationships with other international airlines that carry passengers and cargo to and from destinations throughout Southern Africa.

Victor Shalton


  • Victor Shalton

    Born and raised in Nairobi, Kenya, Victor’s love for aviation goes way back to when he was 11-years-old. Living close to Jomo Kenyatta International Airport, he developed a love for planes and he even recalls aspiring to be a future airline executive for Kenya Airways. He also has a passion in the arts and loves writing and had his own aviation blog prior to joining AirlineGeeks. He is currently pursuing a bachelor’s degree in business administration at DeKUT and aspiring to make a career in a more aviation-related course.

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