Amazing Deal: ~$900 Direct Return Business Class Fares From South Africa To Brazil

Filed Under: LATAM, South African Airways

I read the Premium Fare Deals forum on FlyerTalk religiously, multiple times per day. I get extremely excited when a new thread is created there, because it means a new deal has arrived. But I only write occasionally about premium fare deals on this site, because with any fare deal I want to ensure it is:

  1. On a decent carrier with a decent product (some things are cheap for a reason!)
  2. A significantly lower price than their competitors
  3. Widely available
  4. Doesn’t involve impossible/complicated visa or transfer scenarios
  5. Actually bookable

So even when I see a great deal, I go through the steps above to check if it’s worth sharing with you guys. Some deals have a cheap headline price but are so riddled with complications that it is not worth writing about. I could write about a great deal every single day, but I’m purposely selective.

Previously I’ve written about:

I came across another deal thanks to @IAkH, and while it’s not from the US, Europe or Asia, where many of our readers are based, it’s such a good deal that its still worth sharing.

Right now, there are direct flights between Johannesburg and Sao Paulo, Brazil on many mid week dates between now and Christmas on either LATAM or South African Airways for under $1,000 (US) return, per person.

Because both carriers, who compete on the same route (South African is in Star Alliance, while LATAM is in oneworld) have similar prices, I don’t believe this is a mistake fare, rather just an incredible price.

It’s very rare to see direct flights so much cheaper than connecting!


The LATAM flights are operated with their Boeing 767 product, which has a similar 2-2-2 fully flat hard product as their 787 Dreamliners which Ben reviewed here. However, the seats are a bit narrower, and the cabin doesn’t feel as new.

On the return from Sao Paulo, you’ll have access to the LATAM Lounge, which Ben described as ‘probably the nicest lounge in South America.’

South African

The South African flights are operated by an Airbus A330-200, which also has a 2-2-2 layout, which Ben reviewed quite favourably here.

Additionally, if you are wanting to commence travel in the other direction (i.e. Brazil to South Africa), both of these flight are available for only a few hundred dollars more.

Bottom line

If you are based in either of these cities this is an incredible deal. The fact that the next cheapest price from Ethiopian is around three times the cost should give you an indication of just how good this price is.

I continue to look daily for premium fare deals — are you guys interested in seeing great deals like this?

  1. Great deal, thanks for sharing.

    I notice you write the name of the city for GRU as Sao Paolo multiple times in your post. That is absolutely incorrect. The city is a Brazilian city with a Portuguese name. Hence, it’s Sao Paulo (with a u, not an o). Paolo would be the ITALIAN spelling/ Italian name. And the city is neither in Italy nor in an Italian speaking country. I’d recommend updating.

  2. The SAA operated flight from JNB-GRU is constantly subject to equipment swaps.

    In the last month they have operated the A332, A333, A343 and A346 on the route (viz. every longhaul type in the fleet!).

  3. Of course. Great deals are always great!

    But more focusing on “to/from U.S.” deals is also appreciated

  4. James,
    Maybe you can add this to your trip to Africa. Or I regularly see y fares from Europe to jnb for <€400.

    Latam credits mediocre 200% to Alaska, and south African credits only 125% to most programs, with mediocre products on either airlines, I'll pass. A cost of positioning from North America is a little too much for this.

  5. Yes please keep it James (also with the great posts) also would be great to see some from Australia if/when they come up.

  6. I’d appreciate it more if you shared these deals when you found them, rather than when you just stole them from Flyertalk.

  7. @ Bgriff – I’ve acknowledged where I found it. As I said in the article I don’t consider this to be a mistake fare.

    Flyertalk is a public forum for people to share their thoughts, just as OMAAT is ; )

  8. Please keep the deals coming, regardless of countries/continents and city pairs! There will always be interesting deals for someone reading OMAAT 🙂

  9. Keep these deals coming regardless of origin or destination city. Can always build a trip around it!

  10. I appreciate the fact that you give credit to the FlyerTalk Premium Fare Forum. Many bloggers don’t. In fact many bloggers who copy this will give the h/t to you, rather than your source.

  11. Lucky – please please keep this blog for American readers and don’t use terms such as “return” rather “round-trip”. Thanks!

  12. @Lucky , @Eli,
    Lucky , Lucky please keep the blog for American readers with an IQ below 34… I’m not able to process the difference between return and round trips…
    For a reason i’m using the DNNW (Deep Nebraska Narrow Web) instead the http://WWW...

  13. @James: Private fares or negotiated fares.
    Some travel agencies have access to this fares who often are cheaper than publicated ones.
    For example, I work for a travel agency that has negotiated fares with LA, EK, QF, TK and ET for flights departing from Brazil.
    It’s not super cheap, but it’s cheaper than those fares available to general public.

  14. Unless SAA has changed the A330 version on that route the J seating I had in February was in the new 1-2-1 configured cabin, very nice and private.

  15. @Antonio (July 17, 2018 at 12:28 pm) – LOOOOL I love that one 😉

    @James: great job and indeed the global approach/perspective here is definitely a plus 🙂

  16. @Eli. Keep this blog for a US audience? What? I’m sure I’m far from the only one who doesn’t reside in Yankeeland.

    @CJ. We’re not all AAdvantage flyers. Where does the blog stop? Posting the TP earning? The general CPM?

  17. Thanks James. Yes please very interested for you to share a deal. As you know a lot of us are in Australia and looking for deals to uk/Europe and US. Please share any deals you see either low cash or great points

  18. If you really want to be accurate about the spelling, it’s São Paulo (with the tilde over the “a”). Boink!

  19. James — I’m an American, and I like reading about these sorts of deals, even if they don’t originate or end in The States. In this case, I love both South Africa and Brazil, so a flight that involves both places is something I like to contemplate as part of a longer trip. So thank you!

    @Eli is probably a troll. There is all sorts of nonAmerican English dialect (e.g., “return”) that Americans understand — or should understand if they have traveled at all.

    On the other hand, I do agree with @CJ that these posts about flight deals can be enhanced wiin they include some estimates of partner earning RDMs and EQMs. As LATAM is in the OneWorld alliance, and likely the majority of OMAAT readers are American, their partner American Airlines is an obvious choice. But earnings for Qantas and British Airways could be worth mentioning as well.

  20. “are you guys interested in seeing great deals like this?” – Yes very much so. I try to fly with points but if there is an outstanding premium class fare I might consider going out of pocket especially with some of the harder to book award routes.

  21. Cool way to get to South America from Bangkok as fares to South Africa are consistently super cheap from BKK to Africa

  22. @ DavidB – This route is scheduled to be operated by the A330-200 which has the 2-2-2 product. The A330-200 has operated this route for the past week or two. Occasionally it may get subbed with an A330-300 which has the new 1-2-1 seating but I would expect the older product rather than the newer on this route unfortunately.

  23. @ Morgan – I will certainly post any great deals from Australia noting they are very rare ex-Australia unfortunately.

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