Trip Introduction: South Africa, Kenya and Mauritius via South African Airways, Swiss and Air Canada Business Class


Trip Introduction: South Africa, Kenya and Mauritius via South African Airways, Swiss Air, United Airlines and Air Canada Business Class.


Trip Planning:

Time for another great trip – this one taking us from North America to South Africa. I had last been to South Africa in 1998 at the end of Apartheid but the opportunity hadn’t presented itself until now to go again. In addition, it was also timed with a slightly round, traumatic birthday. 

The scope here was to maximize an Aeroplan Africa Reward, which allowed for 2 stopovers, in addition to the point of turn around. This ticket was actually booked as a Vancouver to Mauritius ticket with stopovers in Johannesburg and Nairobi, with a separate paid ticket between Johannesburg and Cape Town (since the reward ticket doesn’t allow back tracking). 

The ticket was booked at 11 months out and by some stroke of luck, flexibility and almost 30 very frustrating hours of searching, I was able to get 2 reward seats in business for ALL 10 segments. Taxes, fees and fuel surcharge “YQ” came to $849 per ticket, in addition to 150,000 Aeroplan miles per passenger. In doing so, we were able to get full flat seats on South African Airways, Swiss Air and Air Canada Business Class.

The hotels were booked with mostly reward points through SPG (outright reward redemption and Cash and Points) and Hyatt Gold Passport points for a total of 420,000 reward miles spend for this trip. 

YVR-ORD-IAD-DKR-(ORD-GRU-JNB)-JNB (stopover) -MRU (Aeroplan Business Reward)
MRU-JNB-NBO (stopover) -ZRH-LHR-YVR (Aeroplan Business Reward)
JNB-CPT-JNB on SAA Economy (separate paid ticket)

WIL-Ngrende Airstrip-WIL on Air Kenya (separate paid ticket)
Our Canada – South Africa Routing with stops in Johannesburg & Nairobi

Read More from This Trip

In my experience, the African content Award redemptions are super complicated, not to mention high on customer demand, so I hope you’ll enjoy this trip report as you follow along on how we built and traveled our South African and Kenyan Safari Adventure.


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