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South African Airways

South African Airways

Old Nov 7th 2002, 1:29 pm
  #1  
Arjun Sivasundar
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Default South African Airways

Hi,
Does anybody have any experiences with South African Airways (good or
bad) to share? We will be flying New York to Johannesburg on SAA soon,
and would like to hear other people's opinions of this airline
(performance, customer service, food, comfort, anything). A particular
concern is their luggage handling, as we will have quite a lot of
luggage containing important research equipment. Thanks.
 
Old Nov 7th 2002, 3:05 pm
  #2  
Riverman
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Default Re: South African Airways

"Arjun Sivasundar" wrote in message
news:[email protected]...
    > Hi,
    > Does anybody have any experiences with South African Airways (good or
    > bad) to share? We will be flying New York to Johannesburg on SAA soon,
    > and would like to hear other people's opinions of this airline
    > (performance, customer service, food, comfort, anything). A particular
    > concern is their luggage handling, as we will have quite a lot of
    > luggage containing important research equipment. Thanks.


When I was planning a move from Europe to Congo, I used SAA, via Cape Town,
because their excess baggage rates were $2.50/kilo. By the time I arrived in
Cape Town 3 months later, they had escalated to $6.50 per kilo, and by the
time I flew out again a month later, it was up to $8.50/ kilo. You can
imagine what that did to my shipping costs (500kilos). I complained bitterly
to the manager in CT, so he gave me 100 free kilos and arranged for free
overnight storage in Joberg in a secure location.

All in all, I like the airline, but I'm still furious that these rate hikes
weren't preannounced on their website, that none of the multitude of agents
I spoke to in the US or SA said (or even knew) anything about it, and that
the website wasn't even updated by the time I got there in August. It jacked
my moving costs up by over $3000.

riverman
 
Old Nov 7th 2002, 3:37 pm
  #3  
Dave Patterson
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Default Re: South African Airways

Arjun Sivasundar wrote:

    > Hi,
    > Does anybody have any experiences with South African Airways (good or
    > bad) to share? We will be flying New York to Johannesburg on SAA soon,
    > and would like to hear other people's opinions of this airline
    > (performance, customer service, food, comfort, anything). A particular
    > concern is their luggage handling, as we will have quite a lot of
    > luggage containing important research equipment. Thanks.

It's an international airline, like all the others. Food and service
are just what you should expect. If you thought
this might be an inferior airline because it's based in Africa,
you will be pleasantly surprised. If you are in economy, and your
aircraft (the date you are flying) has economy seating on the
upper deck, that's what I would request. Much quieter.

Speaking of your luggage/equipment: 70 pounds per piece is
the weight limit on flights such as yours. Every aspect of baggage
handling is exactly as you would expect it to be on any
reputable airline to any destination.



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Old Nov 7th 2002, 4:30 pm
  #4  
Danie Palm
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Default Re: South African Airways

On Thu, 7 Nov 2002 16:28:16 -0800, "riverman" wrote:

snip

    >All in all, I like the airline, but I'm still furious that these rate hikes
    >weren't preannounced on their website, that none of the multitude of agents
    >I spoke to in the US or SA said (or even knew) anything about it, and that
    >the website wasn't even updated by the time I got there in August. It jacked
    >my moving costs up by over $3000.

It seems that a lot of companies don't have the foggiest that they have a
website that also needs updating. They haven't yet caught on to internet
marketing but are still stuck in the telephone and fax mode. The website's
probably just something nice for the ego. Like a dog that chases cars, when
he finally catches one he doesn't know what to do with it.

My apologies that our flagship is one of them and that it cost you a lot
extra.

Danie Palm - South Africa
Disability is not inability but a challenge
http://www.lando.co.za/pdp
 
Old Nov 7th 2002, 9:52 pm
  #5  
Forum Regular
 
Joined: Apr 2002
Location: Atlanta
Posts: 132
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Default Re: South African Airways

I've flown them twice from Atlanta over the last year and have found them to be top notch, not Virgin mind you, but very good. I concur with the upper deck seating, get it if you can, quieter and a bit more room as well.....
jcsutton is offline  
Old Nov 8th 2002, 5:41 am
  #6  
Marc Lurie
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Default Re: South African Airways

I use SAA whenever possible because I am part of their frequent flyer
program. I have never had any baggage problems with them, and this
includes flights into Uganda, Europe, Angola, Mozambique, West Africa,
USA. Far East etc.

Their cabin crews are quite relaxed, and this attitude might not be
what some travellers expect. Economy class long-haul flights are
always a major schlep, but I guess this is with most airlines.

Food is typical airline food.

All in all, nothing special, just a typical major airline.

One thing I must add:
Please don't judge the firndliness of South Africans on the
(friendliness) of the typical customs/immigration agent at
Johannesburg International Airport. I have written several letters to
the immigration authorities complaining about the frowns, grunts and
general misery of their personnell, but this doesn't seem to help much
    :-)

Mind you, the officials at JFK are not exactly fun to be with...

Regards,

Marc - Johannebsurg
On Thu, 07 Nov 2002 09:29:21 -0500, Arjun Sivasundar
wrote:

    >Hi,
    >Does anybody have any experiences with South African Airways (good or
    >bad) to share? We will be flying New York to Johannesburg on SAA soon,
    >and would like to hear other people's opinions of this airline
    >(performance, customer service, food, comfort, anything). A particular
    >concern is their luggage handling, as we will have quite a lot of
    >luggage containing important research equipment. Thanks.
 

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