South Africa’s brand-new airline, which is set to launch before the end of 2020, has been named Lift.
The new local airline opened its website for bookings on Tuesday (10 November) as it prepares to officially begin operations on 10 December.
IOL reported that the airline found its name thanks to an overwhelming response from the public to its naming competition.
The name was selected from over 25 000 creative suggestions from South Africans who participated for a chance to win a year’s worth of travel on the airline.
The airline is a partnership between established operator Global Aviation, Kulula founder Gidon Novick and former Uber executive Jonathan Ayache.
“It’s been a tough year for so many and the airline industry is in a mess. We want our new airline to be a collaboration with all South Africans and a statement of optimism. This naming process proved to us once again how very resilient, creative and inspiring South Africans are.
“We had so much fun going through the entries. Some were so thoughtful and inspiring like ‘Ubuntu Air’ and ‘FlyMzansi’. ’Djyrynie’ and ‘Planey McPlaneface’ were never going to fly while ‘Gravy Plane’ must have confused us with another airline!” Novick said.
He said the decision was made to choose a name that was relevant to the category, something that was unique, optimistic and of course easy to pronounce and remember.
He said eight South African submitted the same name suggestion – Lift. The Lift team had open conversations with all finalists, and everyone agreed to share the prize. Each will receive their portion of a year’s flights. Their names will also be inscribed on the body of the first plane that takes to the air.
South Africans who submitted the winning names are Reto Reolon, Marisa Melck, Arnoldus Greyling, Alaisha Maharaj, Dawn McCarthy, Ashley Ragunan, Hilary Atkinson and one anonymous South African.
Leading advertising agency, M&C Saatchi Abel, have come on board to assist with establishing and bringing the brand to life.
In the words of one winner, Reto Reolan – “Lift, to me, is a statement of opportunity, optimism & freedom: to revisit places known, explore places new, find business & reconnect with family.”