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BA cheaper fom Madrid to Durban than from Heathrow to Durban

Aldershot
posts: 18
BA cheaper fom Madrid to Durban than from Heathrow to Durban

Hi all.My wife, 2 young kids and I will be going to south africa for christmas and are looking to book soon.

Now the weird thing is, Flying with BA from london to Durban, via Johannesburg is around £5500 for the 4 of us.

If I we fly from Madrid to Durban, via Heathrow and Johannesburg, it is around £3400

So you get a £2000 discount for flying the extra leg from madrid to london, then flying the same route from LHR-JNB- DBN.

How does this make sense, an extra flight, fuel, taxes, etc costs £2000 less!

Question is, could I book from madrid, paying the cheaper fare, and then either cancel or just not pitch for the MAD-LHR leg, but check in from heathrow thereby getting the exact same route for £2000 cheaper?

Any idea if this is possible? Hope I haven't confused you all.

Thanks for reading.

Cardiff, United...
posts: 197
reviews: 12
1. Re: BA cheaper fom Madrid to Durban than from Heathrow to Durban

If you don't check in for the first leg, MAD - LHR, then your whole booking will be cancelled as you will be deemed a no show.

Liverpool, UK
posts: 10,099
reviews: 14
2. Re: BA cheaper fom Madrid to Durban than from Heathrow to Durban

"Question is, could I book from madrid, paying the cheaper fare, and then either cancel or just not pitch for the MAD-LHR leg, but check in from heathrow thereby getting the exact same route for £2000 cheaper?"

No - all flights have to be taken as ticketed, miss the MAD - LHR leg and all subsequent flights are cancelled.

Prices have little to do with distance flown but what airlines serve a particular route, MAD to Durban via LHR/J-Burg is not a particular good routing so is priced low to encourage passengers to take that option over more expensive/better routes.

UK
posts: 41,315
reviews: 87
3. Re: BA cheaper fom Madrid to Durban than from Heathrow to Durban

<<How does this make sense, an extra flight, fuel, taxes, etc costs £2000 less!>>

Supply and demand. No doubt you can fly there cheaper and direct from Madrid on other airlines, so BA have to offer an incentive, which is lower cost. Plus there will be an element of lower APD (since it doesn't apply to connecting flights), but that's only a biggie if flying business class.

<<Question is, could I book from madrid, paying the cheaper fare, and then either cancel or just not pitch for the MAD-LHR leg, but check in from heathrow thereby getting the exact same route for £2000 cheaper?>>

No, they thought of this already, its even got a name, "hidden city ticketing". They will cancel your entire itinerary if you don't take the first flight. Otherwise, everyone would book flights from Madrid for example, wouldn't they? :-)

You can always tag on a short break in Madrid. If you book flights to and from Madrid to "connect", then allow plenty of time. Overnight would not be extreme, its not just time to connect, its also allowance for delays and reschedules. You'd still save £1,00 probably.

Madrid
posts: 2,678
reviews: 7
4. Re: BA cheaper fom Madrid to Durban than from Heathrow to Durban

Its called hidden city ticketing.BA have a whole department to prevent you doing what you suggest.

Nothing to stop you going to Madrid for a night and a good dinner on the money you save.

As the other posters point out,skip your first flight and the rest of your ticket will be cancelled.

Italy
Destination Expert
for Livigno, Lombardy
posts: 39,207
reviews: 127
5. Re: BA cheaper fom Madrid to Durban than from Heathrow to Durban

It's not only BA that does this, if we fly from Zurich to Bangkok with Swiss airlines it's more expensive than from Milan to Bangkok with a transit in Zurich with Swiss Airlines, so there's an extra flight leg but it's cheaper.

London, UK
posts: 1,138
reviews: 114
6. Re: BA cheaper fom Madrid to Durban than from Heathrow to Durban

It's perfectly normal, happens all over the world and is to do with supply and demand. If the price difference makes it worth it (there's always the chance you'll miss the connection and your luggage is more likely to go astray with each flight you add to a booking) go ahead and book. Or if time allows, treat yourself to a night (or two) in Madrid as suggested.

Madrid
posts: 2,678
reviews: 7
7. Re: BA cheaper fom Madrid to Durban than from Heathrow to Durban

Even better when luggage goes astray.A payout from travel insurance.

Some people now check any empty bag on complicated iteneries to get a little shopping trip..

Luton, United...
posts: 986
reviews: 18
8. Re: BA cheaper fom Madrid to Durban than from Heathrow to Durban

Rapidex, I'd never have thought of that...hmmmm...

If the empty bag arrives, fine, if not claim for imaginary contents? Isn't that called insurance fraud?

Madrid
posts: 2,678
reviews: 7
9. Re: BA cheaper fom Madrid to Durban than from Heathrow to Durban

Not at all.Many insurances give you a payout after 4 hours,then more after 48 hours,to tide you over.Its not about claiming for missing contents.

Aldershot
posts: 18
10. Re: BA cheaper fom Madrid to Durban than from Heathrow to Durban

Well we're now looking at emirates which is nearly £1500 cheaper from madrid than from london.

Will add an extra leg to our journey but save about £1000.

Still 2 stops but will be LHR-MAD-DXB-DUR and have the bonus of flying Emirates which most agree is one of the best airlines around.