Travelstart website is a great starting place to compare prices, times and airline carriers. When Rob and I are trying to find cheap domestic flights this is where we look first. The main local carriers are SAA, Mango, Kulula, British airways, and Flysafair. Kulula.com and Mango offer cut-price flights on the more popular routes between Johannesburg (OR Tambo and Lanseria), Durban, Cape Town, Port Elizabeth and George.
The last time I booked a flight to Cape Town, I found the cheapest flight and accidentally booked our flight departing from Lanseria. I’m sure I am not the only one to make this mistake. Because I was so impressed by the Lanseria experience, I decided to blog my views on the pros and cons of each airport.
Amanzi Guest House is in Craighall Park, plumb in between the two airports. O.R. Tambo is 27 kilometers and 34 minutes by car. (more in traffic)
Lanseria is 27 kilometers, and the drive would take 33 minutes! To get the best price, choose the early flights. Not much traffic at that time of the morning too, and beautiful sunrises and pleasant scenery along the way.
Lanseria Airport at Sunrise – Source: SouthAfrica.to
If you Uber, the fare to Lanseria is R210 and to O.R. Tambo the same. I would definitely Uber to Lanseria!
When it comes to public transport O.R Tambo wins. Its easy to get to O.R. Tambo by the Gautrain and a huge advantage to avoid traffic, especially during peak times. From Sandton the trip takes 12 minutes, guaranteed, and takes you right into the airport. Its a 5-10 minute walk to check in. Trains run regularly from 5.30 in the morning till 20.30 at night.
Gautrain at OR Thambo – Source: Wikipedia
Lanseria has no public transport options.
Lanseria wins this round, as its much easier to park there. Just drive in and park, no need to book. The parking area is in close proximity to the Main Terminal Building, but they’ll even offer you a lift on a roaming golf cart, if you prefer not to walk. There are parking facilities a little further away, so if you choose this option, allow extra time to get to the airport. All parking is safe and secure, no worries about your car.
Easy Under-shade Parking at Lanseria – Source : Lanseria Airport
The parking at O.R Tambo is huge, and there are plenty of options, undercover, under shaded cover, and options of being met and your car parked in a safe area for you. However, the hustle and bustle of the parking is a factor to consider, especially if you are in a hurry.
Ease of use
O.R. Tambo is large, but convenient. It is an international airport, and lives up to this. You are spoilt for choice with plentiful shops, restaurants, cafes and lounges. Great choices to pick up last minute gifts.
Shopping at OR Tambo – Source : IOL
Lanseria is a small airport with only domestic and regional flights, its easy to get around, and the reduced noise, hustle and bustle make it much less stressful. It has a Vida a Caffe which is great for that early cup of coffee and a SLOW Lounge. By the way there is free coffee and tea in the departure terminal – I didnt try it, as Rob is a coffee snob, and I love a cappuccino.
Morning Coffee at Lanseria Airport – Source : Lanseria Airport
Each airport has its pros and cons – but for us it will come down to price. And we will fly out of the airport offering the cheapest deal. We would probably Uber to Lanseria, and take the Gautrain to O.R. Tambo.