South African Airways tips/points/miles

Jul 8th, 2004, 10:45 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 21
South African Airways tips/points/miles

We'd like to upgrade to business class for the flight from the States to S. Africa on SAA. We have millions of points and miles on just about every airline...EXCEPT South African Airways.

I know they partner with Delta, but Delta miles cannot be used to upgrade. Does anyone have any tips or tidbits of information that would be helpful?

We'd really like to fly SAA since they have a direct flight from NY/Atlanta, and from there we'll have to hop yet another flight to Seychelles. Hubs cannot sleep on planes w/o his CPAP, so the shorter the travel time the better.
Krystan is offline  
Jul 8th, 2004, 11:18 AM
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 5,553

I would try They are surely the experts on a matter like this. I used them to help me procure business class seats between London and Joburg, and with their help I was able to get a free add-on business class flight between Joburg and Lusaka, a 2.5 hour flight that would have cost $400 each for ECONOMY seats.

If you travel frequently, I would opt for the $99 option that is good for one year, rather than the $39 option valid only for one trip.

If you haven't already bought economy class tix, it should be a piece of cake to find business class tix using your points/miles.

It cost me 80,000 membership rewards points for each person flying from London-Joburg, and Joburg-Lusaka. From the USA, I believe it would have cost 120,000.

Good luck.
Roccco is offline  
Jul 8th, 2004, 12:00 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 21
Roccco - thank you so much! I just checked out the site, and am going to join. This could save so many headaches in this next year.
Krystan is offline  
Jul 8th, 2004, 05:54 PM
Posts: n/a
Krystan - SAA is in the process of leaving their partnership with Delta. They are about to partner in Star Alliance which United is a partner. So I would check with United what their rules/regs are re upgrading on partner airlines (SAA) However, SAA is "only a partner in waiting" right now. But check it out.
Jul 8th, 2004, 06:34 PM
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 120
when i read your message about delta and saa i went into a controlled freakout.

we're planning on going on our first trip to africa (zambia) next aug-sept using our delta miles.

i've called delta (ignorance is bliss), emailed star alliance, joined and posted on and i'll call saa tomorrow.

i can't make a reservation before 9pm est, sept. 17th.

i'll let you know when i find out what's the skinny.

mzcuriouz is offline  
Jul 9th, 2004, 08:46 AM
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 120
hi again, a great site!
if you go to the delta forum check out the response to my query, "delta reward on long? HELP!
mzcuriouz is offline  
Jul 9th, 2004, 01:39 PM
Posts: n/a
mzcuriouz - read your post and responses on flyertalk. Seems nobody quite knows what will be. But if you book your SA flight using DL miles, if it all falls apart, at least you'll be able to get to SA even with another carrier and a connection in Europe. And if the connection isn't a long layover, then it's not much different that the few SA flights from the States that presently have a stop in Dakar or Isle de Sol.

Remember, prior to SA becoming a partner with DL, they partnered with AA flying out of JFK. Can't remember from where else they flew, though one of the posts on flyertalk, mentioned MIA - but now UA doesn't have that much presence there. Why not simply book your flight out of JFK, as I doubt SA will pull out of here and you also have lots of international options from JFK.

Admittedly, it's frustrating, and telling you not to completely freak out won't help, so just try to find out as much info prior your need to book, go for it, even though it all seems up in the air right now. Remember that your September booking date is still a little over 2-months from now - information might be forthcoming between now and then.

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