srs aviation

SRS Aviation takes flight, launched by a rejected flight attendant with a bold vision

A resilient South African flight attendant, Sibongile Sambo, after facing rejection, establishes her own aviation empire – SRS Aviation.

Sibongile Sambo, a brave 42-year-old woman from South Africa, who is extremely passionate about aviation was once rejected by South African Airways as she failed to meet their minimum height criteria.

But not one to be easily deterred, Sambo decided to take matters into her own hands as she became an entrepreneur and launched her very own airline called SRS Aviation.

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srs aviation
Sibongile Sambo: Picture from her Instagram

Sambo sold off her car and used her mother’s pension to procure a license for flying from the South African Civil Aviation Authority

She also raised more capital to make things work and today Sambo’s company is the only one in Africa which is owned by a black woman.

SRS Aviation provides charter flights to include helicopters, luxury, and tourist flights around the world. The crew from Johannesburg has flown to locations as far as Germany and the U.S. 

After obtaining the license, the maiden flight of the aviation company took off in 2004 for the South African government. 

Sambo clarified to CNN, that a tourist charter could cost around $1,000 whereas a head of state traveling on a VIP aircraft to the United States, would be around $200,000.

Sambo has not only accomplished her passion for flying, but she has also assisted three African women in achieving their goal of flying by obtaining their private pilot licenses, and they are now full-time employees of the company. 

srs aviation
Sibongile Sambo: Picture from her Instagram

She is proud of her success in a male-dominated industry, which initially appeared to be challenging. 

Her company works together with another well-known South African aviation company, MCC Aviation, which provides them with a fleet of aircraft as well as technical and operational support.

Since people believed and invested in her, Sambo now feels it is her turn to invest in others, as she wishes to see more women entering the aviation sector.

Ultimately, the expansion of aviation in Africa will lead to more growth for her and her company.

Maya Bennett

Her company offers clients professional and personalized flight options including VIP charters, tourist charters, game count and capture, cargo charters, and helicopter services to various destinations in Africa and around the world.