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Booking a Delta One flight but Delta doesn't fly to my final destination

Booking a Delta One flight but Delta doesn't fly to my final destination

Old Feb 10, 20, 9:11 am
  #1  
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Join Date: Jul 2019
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Booking a Delta One flight but Delta doesn't fly to my final destination

I'm new here and I don't frequently fly internationally, so I apologize if this is a naive question.

I'm traveling from the US to George, South Africa in September. I will be booking a Delta One ticket from the US to Cape Town, but Delta doesn't have any flight options from Cape Town to George. I'm worried about needing to book a flight on a separate itinerary given the possibility that my flight back to Cape Town could be delayed. How do I manage this risk? Will I have additional booking options if I call Delta?

I don't think it matters, but, just in case, my Medallion status with Delta is Gold. I do have the Delta Reserve and Amex Platinum cards if either of those cards open up any options.
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Old Feb 10, 20, 9:20 am
  #2  
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Check which carriers serve George. Would there be more choices from JHB instead of CPT? You might find that one or more carriers are affiliated with a big international airline or at least interline. (IIRC you can find interline details in Wikipedia, or just try google. Some airlines post this information on their websites.)

If DL interlines, if you call DL the agent might be able to put everything together on the same PNR/ticket for you. Alternatively, try using a *good* real live human travel agent who will probably charge a service fee of about $50. I've generally had good luck with AmEx PTS (CALL them, not the website which IIRC is just Expedia) for stuff like this. If you can't interline, PTS can sell you the separate ticket to George if you can't or don't want to buy it directly from the airline.
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Old Feb 10, 20, 9:20 am
  #3  
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I have no issues pricing e.g. ATL-JNB-CPT-GRJ return but it seems like the Delta website is less eager to sell (some OTAs will). I would give Delta a call and see what they can do.
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Old Feb 10, 20, 9:23 am
  #4  
 
Join Date: May 2014
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I do this frequently in SE Asia. I assume from your post that there's not a Delta partner that flies to George such that you could book the entire trip on one ticket. If that's true, and your flight from CT to George is on a different carrier and ticket, you run the risk that a delay on your Delta flight will cause you to miss your flight to George. I would make sure your flight to George doesn't depart until 4 hours or so before you're scheduled to land in CT. That should give you plenty of time to deal with immigration/luggage/checking in to your new flight. This would be a great time to have Priority Pass so you can spend some of that layover in a nice lounge.
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Old Feb 10, 20, 10:28 am
  #5  
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If you do end up having to book separate tickets, I think 4 hours is a reasonable connection time to build in. That will probably cover the vast majority of potential delays into CPT. Then you have to understand what the implications are of a more significant delay (e.g., a cancellation that results in a re-routing). Worst case, you buy a new ticket on CPT-George, so how much does that normally cost? Is there normally reasonable availability on these flights at the last minute or do they regularly sell out well in advance? What is the change fee on your original CPT-George flight? Can you just change it to help limit the cost? How much is a flexible ticket, does that make more sense? Does the airline have a "flat tire" rule that will let you rebook for free if you, for example, are less than 2 hours late for the flight. You might also consider buying separate one-way fares for CPT-George and George-CPT so that if you miss the first leg, the return doesn't get cancelled (which will happen if they're booked together). And then lastly, you could consider travel insurance, which may help defray the costs of re-booking that last segment.
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Old Feb 10, 20, 10:33 am
  #6  
 
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It looks like your best option into/out of GRJ is South African Airways which isn't a member of Skyteam, it's a member of Star Alliance. As much as I love Delta, you might want to consider flying a *A airline like United for this unique destination. Looks like United doesn't sell a through ATL-GRJ fare, but they do sell ATL-CPT and CPT-GRJ as a separate ticket. I would call up United and ask them to book the two tickets and since you're flying all on Star Alliance you should be covered in the event of IRROPS.

If you want to stick with Delta/Skyteam I would book GRJ-CPT and schedule an overnight before the CPT-ATL.
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