Fly for free with sata between the 9 islands of the Azorean archipelago
In a previous blog post about the different flight options between Hungary and the Azores I have mentioned, that there is a possibility to request free tickets from SATA Azores Airlines for inter-island travel. After carefully studying the website of the airline and answering countless questions from you, dear Eden Azores readers, I have decided to dig even deeper in order to bring you more detailed information.
A few important remarks and information about SATA Azores Airlines
Every time I was flying with SATA Azores Airlines it has been a great experience. Like I wrote in my previous blog post: I really felt the urge to personally thank the cabin crew at the end of the journey, because their kindness and care made all the difference.
SATA Azores Airlines has a great bimonthly in-flight magazine called „Azorean Spirit” containing lots of quality information, therefore I highly recommend you browse it through when you are traveling with SATA. Personally, I try to get the new issue every 2 months. All previous issues of „Azorean Spirit” are available for download in PDF format (in English & Portuguese) here.
SATA Azores Airlines has 2 offices on Sao Miguel island, both of which are located in Ponta Delgada. One of them you find at the João Paulo II (John Paul the 2nd) airport, the other one on Avenida Infante Dom Henrique downtown. These offices provide all travelers with prompt and quality information. Every time I went to these offices, my questions have been answered in no time.
But let’s focus on those free inter-island flights, and the conditions which need to be filled in order to request one
What does free flight mean? Which inter-island routes are eligible for free travel, under which conditions?
Thanks to the SATA Azores Airlines promotion there are two possibilities: visit 2 islands for the price of 1 ticket, or booking an Azores inter-island round trip
Promotion Option 1 – visit 2 islands for the price of 1 ticket – can be booked if the following conditions are met:
- The most important condition is as follows: in order to be eligible to book a free inter-island ticket you need to have a separate ticket (booking) from mainland Portugal (e.g. Lisbon, Porto) to the Azores (Sao Miguel or Terceira), or from the Azores (Sao Miguel or Terceira) to mainland Portugal. If your booking already contains the inter-island flight (e.g. Budapest – Lisbon – Terceira – Sao Miguel), or when the departure airport in the booking is not mainland Portugal (in this case it is Budapest) the promotion cannot be redeemed anymore. In this example, you need to have a Budapest – Lisbon, and a separate Lisbon – Terceira booking in order to be able to book a free Terceira – Sao Miguel flight, or you need to have a Budapest – Lisbon, and a separate Lisbon – Sao Miguel booking in order to be able to book a free Sao Miguel – Terceira flight.
- Also you need to arrive to or depart from Sao Miguel (Ponta Delgada) or Terceira and your destination should be mainland Portugal (Lisbon, Porto, etc.).
- Once you get to one of these islands (e.g. Terceira), it is important that you need to fly to the other island (Sao Miguel) within 24 hours. There is of course no time limit on your stay at the second island.
- If it important to book the free flight ticket well before the trip from mainland Portugal to the Azores, but the latest before the departure from mainland Portugal. The free flight ticket cannot be requested afterwards, neither can the price of the last leg of your booking (e.g. Terceira to Sao Miguel) be reimbursed. It is recommended to check the number of seats still available on the inter-island flight, and book your original trip based on this information.
- Another important info: the flight from mainland Portugal to the Azores (or from the Azores to continental Portugal) can be operated by any airline (TAP, RyanAir, SATA), it does not have to be SATA Azores Airlines (but it is only SATA Azores Airlines who is operating inter-island flights).
Where and how can you book these free flight tickets?
The most simple way is to book online in English, by clicking on the link below.
This link leads to the booking page: https://encaminhamentos.sata.pt/en/Home
Another way for the passenger is to book the free flight in person in one of the SATA Azores Airlines offices mentioned above. In this case obviously the free flight (Sao Miguel to Terceira) can only be booked to the return trip (Terceira to Lisbon to Budapest, for example), which is in my opinion very high risk, since free seats are subject to availability.
What information do you need to provide to book a free inter-island flight?
- Full name of the passenger(s)
- Passport number(s)
- The ticket number(s) from your booking(s) from continental Portugal to the Azores
It is important that you receive the confirmation from SATA Azores Airline about your inter-island flight.
Promotion option 2 – Azores inter-island round trip
The second option after you arrived to the Azores – or at home, still planning your trip – is to book an Azores inter-island round trip. In this case SATA Azores Airlines offers the possibility to book a round trip visiting up to 4 different islands for the price of an inter-island return trip. The easiest way to book an inter-island round trip is to go to one of the SATA offices. Online bookings can of course also be made on the SATA Azores Airlines website.
I hope that by sharing this information I could help you visit even more beautiful Azores islands.