Tickets on sale: Fly to Cape Town from 12,500 miles one-way with new Virgin route

Feb 17, 2020

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Tickets on Virgin Atlantic’s relaunched route to Cape Town are now on sale. As of Monday morning, the carrier is showing return flights from its base in London to the popular holiday destination of Cape Town.

As reported by One Mile at a Time, the airline has started issuing tickets on the relaunched route. As of 25 October 2020, Virgin will fly daily between London Heathrow (LHR) and Cape Town (CPT) — a route it previously serviced until 2014.

On the route, Virgin will use one of its Boeing 787-9 aircraft, which feature a three-class configuration: Upper Classpremium economy and economy.

Return flights with Virgin are showing as £598 in Economy Light, Virgin’s most restrictive economy ticket. For £669 return, you can purchase an Economy Classic ticket, which is less than Virgin’s original advertised price of £713 return.

If you’re looking to use points and miles from London Heathrow (LHR), you can expect to pay as few as 57,500 Flying Club miles + £391 one-way in Upper Class —or 115,000 miles and around £590 in taxes and fees return.

However, if you originate in Cape Town and want to redeem for a one-way reward ticket in Upper Class, you can expect to pay slightly less in taxes and fees. For example, this one-way flight costs the same 57,500 Flying Club miles but 4,451 South Africa Rand, or about £228 — more than £150 less than originating in London.

If economy is more in the books, expect to pay 25,000 Flying Club miles and around £275 for a return itinerary from London to Cape Town — from 12,500 miles plus taxes and fees one-way. Based on TPG U.K.’s most recent valuations, those 25,000 Flying Club miles are worth £300. On top of the taxes and fees, you’re looking at about £575 — a good value, considering it’s booked in Economy Classic, where the lowest cash fare is £668 return.

If you’re short of Virgin Atlantic Flying Club miles, there are a number of ways to earn them without actually flying. Virgin’s cobranded credit card, such as the Virgin Atlantic Reward+ Credit Card comes with a sign-up bonus of up to 25,000 bonus miles. You’ll earn 15,000 miles when you open an account and make your first purchase within the first 90 days, plus an extra 10,000 miles when you spend £3,000 in the first 90 days — as long as you apply on or before 28 February. The 25,000 sign-up bonus is enough for a return flight to Cape Town in economy.

Related reading: The ultimate Virgin Atlantic Flying Club guide

In addition to using one of Virgin’s cobranded credit cards, you can also transfer American Express U.K. Membership Rewards points to Flying Club at a 1:1 rate. So, 10,000 Amex points transferred to Virgin Atlantic will give you 10,000 Flying Club miles.

Featured photo by Patrick Fallon/The Points Guy.

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