Book Cheap Flights to Chicago

Find out more

About Chicago

Founded in the 1780s, Chicago is a highly-esteemed world city in the state of Illinois. Positioned along Lake Michigan, it is an international hub for commerce, technology, telecommunications and transportation. With revered landmarks like Millenium Park and the Museum of Science and Industry, it is no surprise that it is one of the most visited cities in the USA.

Cheap flights to Chicago are now available for a limited time only, so book your flight today and be enthralled by the diverse culture and stately landmarks of this lively city! Chicago is home to O'Hare International Airport (ORD), a 45-minute commute from the city centre. ORD serves many airlines, including Delta Airlines and American Airlines. There are no direct flights from South Africa to Chicago, but popular connecting flights depart from Johannesburg and Cape Town. Flight duration from Johannesburg to Chicago is approximately 20 hours, 25 minutes.

Why visit Chicago

eclectic neighbourhoods

Eclectic Neighbourhoods

Explore this diverse city by walking or cycling through its characteristic neighbourhoods. From Korean hotpot along Devon Avenue and Chinatown’s dumplings, to Polish bars in Belmont, you will be absorbed by Chicago’s fusion of culture and cuisine.

history and architecture

History and Architecture

From classical and Gothic to new-age creations, Chicago is bursting with architectural gems scattered around the city. From the downtown bridge, you can view some incredible buildings, like Wrigley Building, Rockerfeller Memorial Chapel and Robie House.

scenic attractions

Scenic Attractions

A visit to Chicago isn’t complete without a visit to Millenium Park, a backdrop for festivals and concerts. See the city from above where you’ll be treated to 360°C views of the Chicago skyline.

General information

Essential details you need to know before your trip

Country United States of America
Currency US Dollar ($)
Exchange Rate 1 ZAR = 0.07 USD
Language English
Hub Airport Chicago O'Hare International Airport (ORD)
Airline American Airlines
Time Zone GMT – 06:00
Travel Adaptor Type A / B

Best time to visit Chicago

The ideal time to visit Chicago is between September and October, if you’d rather avoid the crowds and inflated accommodation prices. This sweet spot also offers cooler weather and soulful jazz and film festivals. If you’d rather be part of the summer hustle and bustle, go between June and August, but be prepared to book accommodation at least one month in advance. You can enjoy outdoor markets, music festivals and of course, the beaches! Some festivals to add to your itinerary include the largest outdoor food festival – Taste of Chicago – in July, funky Lollapalooza in August and Jazz Fest in September. Biting winds and icy temperatures set in between November and March, but this is the perfect opportunity to hit the museums and shop till you drop!

Weather & Climate in Chicago

Average temperature (°C) & rainfall (mm) per month

Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
Low °C -9°C -7°C -2°C 4°C 10°C 15°C 18°C 17°C 13°C 7°C 1°C -6°C
High °C -1°C 2°C 7°C 15°C 21°C 27°C 29°C 28°C 24°C 18°C 9°C 2°C
Rainfall (mm) 44 38 68 95 85 98 100 100 89 65 72 64

Overview

Chicago is something of an alpha world city, held in high regard for its economic and cultural influence beyond the borders of the USA. While the city itself is a vibrant, bustling metropolis, its residents are unbelievably welcoming, friendly & warm. While Chicago is an international hub for commerce, finance, telecoms and transportation, it is also home to captivating museums, fascinating theatres and sprawling green urban areas.

With the vast waters of Lake Michigan lapping at the feet of Chicago’s picturesque skyline, it’s no wonder the “City of Big Shoulders” has been the inspiration for many great poets, writers, filmmakers and musicians. The diverse neighbourhoods of Chinatown, Devon Avenue, Far Southwest Side and Seoul Drive are a melting-pot of ethnicities from around the globe.

Millennium Park in Chicago is a must for arts and culture buffs, while Museum Campus is a civil engineering wonder with its criss-cross roads that connect the four main museums of Chicago - The Shedd Aquarium, Field Museum, Alder Planetarium and Soldier Field.

Lincoln Park Zoo, Judy Istock Butterfly Haven and Grant Park are great nature gardens. Indulge the shopper in you at Michigan Avenue, Lincoln Square and Southport Corridor. Theatre junkies can catch a show at the famous Chicago Theatre after spending a day on the fashionable beaches of Lake Michigan.

Visa & Customs

A United States Tourist Visa is required for South Africans travelling anywhere within the United States. You’ll need to make sure that your SA passport is valid for at least 6 months from the date of your return and that there are at least 2 pages free for stamps. Visa processing can take a few months, so leave plenty of time and ensure you have all the required documents. For further information, see the Embassy website @ https://za.usembassy.gov/visas/

The U.S. Embassy and Consulates are located in Pretoria, Johannesburg, Cape Town and Durban.

The South African Consulate in Chicago is located at: 200 S Michigan Avenue.

Health & Safety

Chicago is no different from any other major city in America. As long as you keep your wits about you and exercise regular safety precautions, you’ll have a fantastic time in ‘Chi-town’. Be on the lookout for pick-pockets around bus stations and busy streets. Major tourist areas stay open late into the night, particularly North Michigan Avenue. Downtown is home to a number of vagrants but they are generally harmless.

Should you encounter a snowstorm during your trip, stay off the roads and take shelter.

Cost of Living

ITEM CAPE TOWN JOHANNESBURG CHICAGO
Meal, inexpensive restaurant R 90 R 100 R 195
Domestic beer (0.5 litre draught) R 22 R 20 R 65
Cappuccino R 19 R 20 R 52
Taxi 1km (normal tariff) R 10 R 12 R 18
Pack of cigarettes (Marlboro) R 35 R 35 R 156
Why book with us
  • Bringing you the best fares from all airlines
  • Expert assistance from booking to departure
  • Online destinations for planning your travels
Already Booked your Flight?

Explore our Hotel listings:

  • 1000's of options worldwide
  • Best prices
  • Great service
Personalised Assistance

Need help with your booking? Contact our expert Travelbar agents for guidance and booking assistance

  • 0861 878 278
  • travelbar@travelstart.com

Download our app

Free for iPhones and Andriod