Book a flight ahead of a visa being granted? Whats the risk?

It’s a question we get asked often as it makes such a huge difference to the cost of a flight. Many embassies and travel agents will recommend that you wait until your visa is granted before booking a flight as they ‘cannot be held responsible for the costs of rebooking or refund’.  And this certainly makes sense.  The last thing you want to do is to spend a whack of cash on a flight only to lose that money if your visa is denied.  The dilemma however, is that flights are SO much cheaper if you book them early rather than wait for that visa.  Chilli’s students travelling to the USA at the end of the year for example, may pay almost double for a flight booked October/November than if they’d booked in July/August.  R9000 vs R18,000 – thats a big difference!

Virgin Atlantic have come to the rescue!  They are the first and only airline (as far as we know) that have a FULL refund policy in place in the event that your visa is denied.  That means you can book early and get a better deal, but with non of the risk involved.

virgin atlantic logo

Virgin have further sweetened the deal by offering multiple date changes for FREE, NADA, ZIP!  Thats in an environment when most airlines charge in $100 or more for a date change.   So Virgin Atlantic get Chilli’s  VOTE for being absolutely the Hottest airline in town!


  • Virgin fly direct from Cape Town and Jo’burg to London and onto New York  or Los Angeles
  • Free date changes on all booking classes (Most airlines charge handsomely for this!)
  • Tickets valid for one year from date of travel 
  • Virgin offer a FULL refund of your ticket if your visa is denied, freeing you up to book earlier and secure a much better price.  

Current pricing:

  • Departing Johannesburg, via London  to New York = R11,790 incl taxes  
  • Departing Cape Town, via London  to New York = R12,690 incl taxes

If you’d like a call or quote drop an email to confirming your destination and approx. dates.

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