There is a little-known arbitrage you can use to save £50 of tax when booking British Airways Avios redemption flights to Cape Town.
Whilst Cape Town does have a direct BA service, it is often tricky to find Avios reward seats. Most people end up travelling via Johannesburg and changing to a Comair connection. Comair is a BA franchise and its planes have the usual British Airways livery.
This is how it works:
If you book London to Cape Town via a connection in Jo’burg, the cost (economy return) is 45,500 Avios off-peak plus £433 tax
If you book London to Jo’burg on one ticket and Jo’burg to Cape Town on a separate ticket, the individual costs are 32,500 plus £328 for the long-haul, off-peak, and 13,000 Avios plus £56 for the connection.
That is a saving of £49!
There is a small trade off, of course. As you will be on separate tickets, Comair and BA are not technically liable to look after you if you miss one flight because the other is delayed. In reality, I would not be at all worried about this as Comair and BA effectively operate as one airline and will ensure you are OK. It is also likely that you would get your baggage checked through at Heathrow and at Cape Town.
How to earn Avios from UK credit cards (January 2021)
As a reminder, there are various ways of earning Avios from UK credit cards. Many cards also have generous sign-up bonuses!
There are two official British Airways American Express cards:
You can also get generous sign-up bonuses by applying for American Express cards which earn Membership Rewards points, such as:
Click here to read our detailed summary of all UK credit cards which earn Avios. This includes both personal and small business cards.
If you have a small business, we especially recommend Capital On Cap’s Visa card which comes with a generous bonus worth 10,500 Avios:
(Want to earn more Avios? Click here to visit our home page for our latest articles on earning and spending your Avios points and click here to see how to earn more Avios this month from offers and promotions.)