Fly to 18 destinations in Southern Africa with a new British Airways codeshare
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The final collapse of Comair, back in 2022, left a bit of a gap in the British Airways South Africa network.
Previously, British Airways offered a number of onward connections from Johannesburg and Cape Town through Comair. It operated its own aircraft under a British Airways franchise agreement with BA branding.
Flights included Durban, Port Elizabeth and international connections to Windhoek, Mauritius and Harare.
If you’ve never flown Comair, it was a fascinating experience. You were on a BA-branded aircraft with crew in British Airways uniform, operating to BA service standards.
In 2020, Comair hit some turbulence as a result of the pandemic and entered Business Rescue, similar to Chapter 11 bankruptcy in the US. This allowed it to raise new money and relaunch operations.
Unfortunately, that didn’t last long and the airline collapsed for good in June 2022, leaving British Airways without convenient flight connections within Southern Africa.
British Airways signs a codeshare deal with Airlink
Eight months later, British Airways has found a solution by partnering with African airline Airlink which offers flights to more than 45 destinations.
British Airways will offer codeshare services on 18 of these routes. Any codeshare flights booked as a connection to a British Airways international leg will continue to earn Avios and tier points, as if it was operated by British Airways.
There are two things you cannot do:
- redeem Avios for Airlink flights
- book Airlink flights with a BA flight number, to earn Avios or tier points, if you are not connecting to a British Airways long haul service on the same ticket
You will arrive on time to your destination according to the press release:
“Airlink has consistently been the most on-time domestic airline over the last three years, with its fleet of more than 60 modern jetliners achieving a 95.52% average on-time performance in 2022.”
Destinations included in the first wave of the codeshare agreement are:
- East London
- George Airport
- Port Elizabeth
- Richards Bay
- Walvis Bay
Airlink predominantly operates a fleet of Embraer jet aircraft, so you should get an experience similar to that on BA CityFlyer. A complimentary meal service is also provided.
You can now book on the British Airways website here, for travel from 15th February.
How to earn Avios from UK credit cards (April 2023)
As a reminder, there are various ways of earning Avios points from UK credit cards. Many cards also have generous sign-up bonuses!
In February 2022, Barclaycard launched two exciting new Barclaycard Avios Mastercard cards with a bonus of up to 25,000 Avios. You can apply here.
You qualify for the bonus on these cards even if you have a British Airways American Express card:
Barclaycard Avios Plus Mastercard
25,000 Avios for signing up and an upgrade voucher for spending £10,000 Read our full review
Barclaycard Avios Mastercard
5,000 Avios for signing up and an upgrade voucher for spending £20,000 Read our full review
There are two official British Airways American Express cards with attractive sign-up bonuses:
British Airways American Express Premium Plus
25,000 Avios and the famous annual 2-4-1 voucher Read our full review
British Airways American Express
5,000 Avios for signing up and an Economy 2-4-1 voucher for spending £12,000 Read our full review
You can also get generous sign-up bonuses by applying for American Express cards which earn Membership Rewards points.
American Express Preferred Rewards Gold
Your best beginner’s card – 20,000 points, FREE for a year & four airport lounge passes Read our full review
The Platinum Card from American Express
30,000 points and unbeatable travel benefits – for a fee Read our full review
Run your own business?
We recommend Capital On Tap for limited companies. You earn 1 Avios per £1 which is impressive for a Visa card, along with a sign-up bonus worth 10,500 Avios.
Capital On Tap Business Rewards Visa
Get a 10,000 points bonus plus an extra 500 points for our readers Read our full review
You should also consider the British Airways Accelerating Business credit card. This is open to sole traders as well as limited companies and has a 30,000 Avios sign-up bonus.
British Airways Accelerating Business American Express
30,000 Avios sign-up bonus – plus annual bonuses of up to 30,000 Avios Read our full review
There are also generous bonuses on the two American Express Business cards, with the points converting at 1:1 into Avios. These cards are open to sole traders as well as limited companies.
American Express Business Platinum
40,000 points bonus and a £200 Amex Travel credit every year Read our full review
American Express Business Gold
20,000 points sign-up bonus and free for a year Read our full review
Click here to read our detailed summary of all UK credit cards which earn Avios. This includes both personal and small business cards.