Ways to save on airfares to South Africa
Did you know?
South African Airways (SAA) is a member of the Star Alliance, so you can earn SAA frequent flyer miles through another Star Alliance airline rewards programme.
There are several ways to save on airfares to South Africa, with a little planning you can pick up some very good deals.
Firstly, decide where you’re going in South Africa and, if possible, fly into the airport closest to your destination. This will help you save on connecting flights.
For example, if you’re headed for Cape Town, then fly directly to Cape Town International Airport (CTIA) rather than to OR Tambo International Airport (ORTIA) in Johannesburg. Unless, of course, there is an irresistible special to Johannesburg.
Most international airlines fly into ORTIA, with fewer flying into CTIA. Among those that do are British Airways, Lufthansa, KLM, Singapore Airlines, Virgin Atlantic Airways, and Emirates. Note that only a very few fly into the new King Shaka International Airport outside Durban.
Even if you have to catch a connecting flight to your destination, its easy - and a steal with the attractive rand/US dollar and rand/British pound exchange rates. The longest flight in South Africa is just 2 hours – from Johannesburg to Cape Town. Even in peak season there are usually good domestic fare specials available – especially on our low cost carriers like Kulula, 1Time and Mango.
You can also save by flying to South Africa in low season or shoulder season when airfares are usually lower. SAA, for example, usually offers low season fare specials during February, March, May and November.
Booking directly on an airline’s website also gives you access to some of the cheapest fares. However, booking with a travel agent offers peace of mind and also enables you to get information on fares of several airlines quickly and easily.
Another way to save is to book a package with a tour operator in your home market that specialises in South Africa. Tour operators often buy airfares and accommodation in bulk and can therefore offer very good deals that you may not be able to get by booking directly with the airline or accommodation provider.
You should also check out the airfares on the Middle East carriers like Emirates, Etihad Airways and Qatar Airways. These carriers often offer cheaper fares into South Africa, and lower airport taxes. The trade-off is longer flying times.
Travel tips & Planning info
Who to contact
South African Airways (SAA)
Tel: +27 (0)11 978 1000 (Head Office)
+27 (0)11 978 1111 (Call Centre)
Fax: +27 (0)11 978 1106