AIRLINE TOUTS S. AFRICA

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RESTON, Va.-How do you launch a new airline that flies to violence-tainted South Africa?

That's the challenge for Siddall, Matus & Coughter, Richmond, as it helps USAfrica Airways get off the ground. The new airline plans to take off in June from Washington's Dulles Airport and fly twice a week to Johannesburg.

As part of the $3 million campaign, USAfrica and Siddall first courted travel agents this month in color spreads showing off exotic wildlife, with consumer ads following. Ads will appear in Travel Age, Travel Agent, Travel Weekly and Canadian Travel Press. A consumer ad will appear in Washington Flyer; ads may follow in Business Week, Conde Nast Traveler, Travel & Leisure and The Wall Street Journal.

"The No. 1 appeal to those who visit is the wildlife," said Peter Coughter, agency president, adding that about half of those who journey to the region do so for pleasure.

Public relations efforts aimed at travel writers will address political unrest. Siddall's PR unit, William Hamby Communications, is charged with educating the travel writers about the airline and the region's finest attractions.

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