Cheap Flights to London Heathrow

Planning a trip to London?



About London

London is the largest city in Europe and foreign visitors are well catered for through the city’s extensive flight and airport network. As the largest and busiest airport in London, Heathrow (airport code LHR) is most often the one you will fly into if you’re travelling from South Africa.


Set your watch

The UK uses Greenwich Mean Time or Western European Time (UTC) and British Summer Time or Western European Summer Time (UTC+01:00).

This means South Africa is 2 hours ahead of London during the UK winter (South African summer), and 1 hour ahead of London during the UK summer (South African winter).


Best Time to Visit London

While we prefer the balmy English summer, we can say that the city of London is worth visiting no matter the time of year. Whether it’s snowing on Oxford Street or sunny in Hyde Park, London excites!

Visiting London over Christmas will allow you a glimpse into the festive spirit of the British, and if you’re really lucky, a White Christmas.

While winter is great, the London summer provides an opportunity to catch up with your expat mates over a back garden braai, and lest we forget, the amazing sales.


UK Sim Card

You can purchase local sim cards from one of the vending machines or W.H. Smith located in the Terminal buildings at Heathrow Airport. O2, Vodafone, Orange (T-Mobile), Three and Virgin Mobile are the primary mobile network service providers in the UK.

If you can wait, rather transfer to Central London, find a newsagent at any Underground Station and purchase your local UK sim card there. They're often cheaper than prices at Heathrow and should have the sim card that suits your requirements.


Emergency Numbers

Emergency services (Police, Fire Brigade, Ambulance): 112 or 999

NHS: As a visitor to the UK, you are not eligible for free NHS treatment except if you need emergency treatment. You are strongly advised to take out travel insurance prior to departing South Africa to cover any medical expenses.



London Flight Info

A direct flight from South Africa to London covers a distance of 9039km and flight duration is approximately 11 hours and 44 minutes.

As the largest and busiest airport in London, Heathrow (airport code LHR) is most likely the one you will fly into if you’re travelling from South Africa. Non-stop flights to London from South Africa depart daily from Johannesburg’s O.R. Tambo International Airport and Cape Town International Airport. For flights from other airports, please refer to the online flight booking engine.


London Flights from Cape Town

Airlines operating direct flights to London’s Heathrow Airport from Cape Town include:

  • British Airways
  • Virgin Atlantic (Seasonal: Direct flights to London from Cape Town on Virgin Atlantic are usually available during the South African summer (UK winter). Please refer to the Travelstart booking engine for the latest schedule for your chosen travel dates).
  • South African Airways (Direct flights between London and Cape Town were cancelled in August, 2012).
Airline Departs Cape Town (CPT) Arrives London (LHR) Days Flying Time
BA58 (British Airways) 20:05pm local time 06:40am local time Daily flights available 11 hours 35 minutes (Overnight flight)
Airline Departs Cape Town (CPT) Arrives London (LHR) Days Flying Time
VS (Virgin Atlantic) Unavailable Unavailable Daily flights available (Seasonal) --
London Flights from Johannesburg

Airlines operating direct flights to LHR from Johannesburg’s O.R. Tambo International Airport (JNB) include:

  • British Airways
  • Virgin Atlantic (Seasonal: Direct flights to London from Cape Town on Virgin Atlantic are usually available during the South African summer (UK winter). Please refer to the Travelstart booking engine for the latest schedule for your chosen travel dates).
  • South African Airways (Direct flights between London and Cape Town were cancelled in August, 2012).
Airline Departs Johannesburg (JNB) Arrives London (LHR) Days Flying Time
SA236 (South African Airways) 20:20pm local time 06:55am local time Daily flights available 11 hours 35 minutes (Overnight flight)
Airline Departs Johannesburg (JNB) Arrives London (LHR) Days Flying Time
BA54 (British Airways) 20:45pm local time 6:45am local time Daily flights available 11 hours (Overnight flight)
Airline Departs Johannesburg (JNB) Arrives London (LHR) Days Flying Time
VS602 (Virgin Atlantic) 20:25pm local time 6:50am local time Daily flights available 10 hours 45 minutes (Overnight flight)


UK Visa Application & Checklist

For South African passport holders there is only one way to obtain your UK Visa in SA and that is through the UK Border Agency’s handling company called VFS Global: http://www.vfs-uk-za.com/.

Contrary to popular belief, your air ticket doesn’t have to be purchased prior to applying for your UK Visa. However, your return air ticket reservation will help motivate your UK Visa application.


Visa Checklist

The basic checklist for a UK Tourist Visa is as follows; however, supporting documents are submitted at your discretion and may differ according to the type of Visa you are applying for.

  • Your current passport with at least 6 months validity from the date of your departure and at least 2 blank pages.
  • Your old passport (if possible) to show your travel history and previous UK Visa’s.
  • Your London flight ticket (optional).
  • A signed letter from your UK host inviting you to stay. Alternatively, confirmation of your booked accommodation in the UK.
  • A signed letter (on company letterhead) from your employer stating you are currently employed and will be returning to your job after your trip to London.
  • Proof of residential address (Recent utilities bill or letter from your landlord will suffice).

UK Visa Office Locations in South Africa
Durban Cape Town Johannesburg Pretoria Port Elizabeth
565 Swift Centre, 2 Floor Suite 8, Corner Of Peter Mokaba (old Ridge Road) and Crescent Street, Morningside 22nd Floor, ABSA Centre, 2 Riebeck Street 10th Floor Office Towers, Sandton City Mall (Above Nedbank) 1st Floor - Lobby 4, Bank Forum, 337 Veale Street, Opposite Brooklyn Mall, Brooklyn 2nd Floor, Office 8, Office Block, Moffet on Main Lifestyle Centre Corner of William Moffet and Main Road, Walmer

The price of the UK Visa depends on the exchange rate at the time of applying.



South African High Commission to the UK

The South African High Commission to the United Kingdom is located in London in the bustling centre of Trafalgar Square and is known as South Africa House.

Located on the iconic square’s east side, South Africa House is considered a sight of Trafalgar Square. The building was completed in 1935 and the façade features keystones with African animal details.

Address:
South African High Commission
South Africa House
Trafalgar Square
London WC2N 5DP

Phone: +44 (0) 20 7451 7299

Fax: +44 (0) 20 7839 5670



UK Travel Adaptors and Voltage

Travel Adaptor: All you will need, throughout the UK, is a simple UK Adaptor Plug. These are available at airports, baggage shops and shopping malls throughout South Africa. UK Plugs are identifiable by their three flat prongs. They are also used in Ireland, though are different to the rest of Europe.

South African two prong plugs (cellphone chargers etc.) are the same as UK two prong plugs. Voltage: The United Kingdom uses 230V (Frequency: 50 Hz).



Things to do in London & Transport

London is full of attractions for South African travellers. You’ll even get a thrill just walking around this sprawling, beautiful city. Some of the must see parts of this global hub include the London Eye, the shopping district around Leicester Square and Covent Garden, Tower Bridge and the famed Camden Market.

For culturists, a visit to London is not complete without taking in a show in the West End. A day spent at one of the city’s many galleries is a must. The British Museum and the Tate Modern have long been favourites, and Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre is just a short walk from the Tate. Be sure to stopover at Buckingham Palace to watch the changing of the guard ceremony or take a guided tour of the Palace with a reputable tour operator. See the links below for some fresh ideas about London attractions and sights.



London Transport

Travel Adaptor: All you will need, throughout the UK, is a simple UK Adaptor Plug. These are available at airports, baggage shops and shopping malls throughout South Africa. UK Plugs are identifiable by their three flat prongs. They are also used in Ireland, though are different to the rest of Europe.