Editor’s note: See update below.
SCI has received information from the Professional Hunters Association of South Africa (PHASA) that effective immediately, hunters and sport shooters travelling to or from Heathrow Airport in the UK may not check their firearms on South African Airways (SAA) flights. This prohibition is due to an administrative problem the airline is having with the renewal of their license to transport firearms into or out of Heathrow. SAA insists that it is a temporary problem and that they are working urgently to resolve the issue with the UK Police.
Until the matter is resolved, hunters and shooters with plans to travel on SAA flights through Heathrow Airport with firearms should make arrangements to fly with other airlines that do allow firearm carriage.
If you have any questions about this situation, SCI recommends that you contact SAA or PHASA (firstname.lastname@example.org) directly for more information about your options. SCI will provide updates on this issue as they become available.
Update July 12, 2017
SAA LIFTS FIREARM TRANSPORT RESTRICTIONS WITH IMMEDIATE EFFECT
The Professional Hunters’ Association of South Africa (PHASA) is relieved to confirm that South African Airways (SAA) successfully attended to the restrictions on travelling with firearms to and from the United Kingdom (UK).
“SAA complied with the safety and security requirements of the police at Heathrow Airport. The restrictions have been lifted with immediate effect,” says Tharia Unwin, chief executive officer of PHASA.