South African Startup LIFT Wants You To Choose Its Livery

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Weeks after crowd-sourcing its name, South Africa’s LIFT Airline wants the public to help choose its livery too. The carrier will begin operations on December 10th, flying two routes from Johanessburg to Cape Town and George. Let’s find out what the airline is considering for its livery.

A320neo rollout
LIFT is starting operations in December with three Airbus A320s. Photo: Getty Images

Choose the livery

LIFT made the news a few months ago when it asked the public to help choose the airline’s name. After over 25,000 suggestions from the public, the airline opted to go with the name of LIFT, a simple yet informative name suggested by eight people. Now, the airline is back to crowdsource another key part of its brand: the livery.

The airline posted on Instagram yesterday, asking people to choose between two livery options. Both liveries follow the airline’s yellow and black color theme, with one option offering a black tail with a yellow lowercase ‘L,’ while the other has a yellow tail with a black lowercase ‘L.’ The aircraft body will feature a simple “lift.” along the side.

Over 500 people have already commented with their livery preference, with more likely coming in over the next few days. The airline is set to fly its inaugural flight on December 10th, which means it has to move fast to decide which color to paint its aircraft.

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What is LIFT?

LIFT Airline is a new South African carrier headed by Gidon Novick, former CEO of Comair and founder of Kulula.com. The low-cost airline has been floated since July and is hoping to take market share from the struggling flag carrier South African Airlines (SAA).

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The airline will start operations on December 10th with a fleet of three leased Airbus A320s, just in time for the holidays. As mentioned, LIFT will fly from Johanessburg to Cape Town, the 11th busiest domestic route in the world, and from Johanessburg to George, a more leisure-oriented route.

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LIFT is taking advantage of the market left by flag carrier South African Airlines. Photo: Getty Images

While the pandemic might seem like the worst time to start a carrier, there are several advantages during this time. In an interview, CEO Gidon Novick said,

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“Obviously, it’s opportunistic, in terms of the availability of all the key inputs into an airline, starting with aircraft facilities, and really high-quality people. Unfortunately, many people are really keen to get back into the industry. So, I think when you put all of that together there’s an to create something new something fresh, something super-efficient.”

Given the current circumstances, LIFT’s focus will be on key domestic routes and keeping costs as low as possible. However, the carrier’s decision to lease larger aircraft does suggest that it will look to expand operations in the future.

More competition

LIFT will face off against South African low-cost airlines Kulula.com and Mango. This would be in addition to full-service airlines such as Comair and South African Airlines, who dominate on popular routes such as Johanessburg to Cape Town.

However, this year has significantly shaken up the aviation market, and LIFT could have a shot at making an impact in the crowded market.

What do you think about LIFT? Will the carrier succeed? Let us know your thoughts in the comments!

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