Today we are starting a series of articles from a recent trip that Rhys took to Mauritius.
For once, we are not focusing on the flight because it was British Airways Club World from London Gatwick. This features the old Club World seat which is, thankfully, disappearing quickly – although there is no timetable for converting the Gatwick fleet yet. More practically, it is a difficult flight to review because both legs are overnight and you spend the bulk of it asleep.
We are reviewing three of the branded resorts in Mauritius – the Sofitel, the Westin and the newly refurbished Le Meridien.
We are also going to look at:
- the British Airways First Class lounge at London Gatwick (this article runs today, the hotel reviews will follow every couple of days)
- the excellent Priority Pass lounge in Mauritius
- the new British Airways lounge in Johannesburg, which is how Rhys routed his return trip
Getting to Mauritius using Avios
The obvious route to Mauritius is to use Avios on British Airways which is what I (Rob) did when I was there in May. If you’ve got any questions about One & Only Le Saint Geran, you can ask me in the comments as I didn’t write a review. I booked this via our hotel partner Emyr Thomas due to the additional benefits he could secure – you can contact him here.
Surprisingly, Qatar Airways does not fly to Mauritius. If you try to book for cash it routes you via Johannesburg, connecting to South African Airways.
In theory you could also use Avios to fly on British Airways to Johannesburg and then pay for a connection on South African Airways or Air Mauritius. London to Johannesburg is not an easy route to secure, however.
Other frequent flyer miles options to Mauritius
I thought it was worth taking a quick look at some of the other ways of getting to Mauritius, assuming that you have frequent flyer miles in multiple programmes.
Yes, Mauritius has its own airline, Air Mauritius. It also has a new modern airport as Rhys will show.
Air Mauritius flies direct from London and Paris. A picture of its business class cabin is above.
These routes reflect the ties between the island and the UK and France. Whilst the UK was the last colonial ruler of Mauritius before its independence in 1968, it was previously controlled by the French between 1715 and 1810. Mauritian Creole, French and English are all widely spoken.
There is no easy way of earning miles in the Air Mauritius frequent flyer scheme. However, whilst the airline is not in any of the three main alliances, it does have a number of partnerships.
You can book Air Mauritius flights using miles from the following programmes:
- Air Canada Aeroplan (a new partnership launched this year)
- Emirates Skywards (click here for details)
- Flying Blue (click here for details)
As well as using Emirates Skywards miles to redeem on the direct Air Mauritius flight from London, you can also redeem on multiple daily flights from the UK via Dubai on Emirates.
SkyTeam or Virgin Points
If you have miles in any SkyTeam frequent flyer programme, or Virgin Points, you can redeem on the direct Air France service from Paris.
You could also redeem on Air France to neighbouring Réunion and then hop on a connection for cash with Air Mauritius.
There is also a routing on Kenya Airways via Nairobi. You cannot book Kenya Airways via Virgin Points, only with a SkyTeam currency such as Flying Blue miles or Delta SkyMiles.
One other option for Virgin Points holders is to fly on Virgin Atlantic to Johannesburg and book a cash connection onwards.
If you have miles in any Star Alliance frequent flyer scheme, there are various direct Europe to Mauritius routings you could potentially book including:
- Austrian from Vienna
- Eurowings from Frankfurt
- Turkish from Istanbul
You could also use Star Alliance miles to book the South African Airways service from Johannesburg to Mauritius. You could use either Avios on British Airways, Virgin Points on Virgin Atlantic or Star Alliance miles on South African to get from the UK to Jo’burg.
As you can see, there are multiple options for getting to Mauritius even if you are struggling to find Avios availability on British Airways.
Starting with our lounge review today, we hope our series of articles gives you a feel for the island.