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Air Burkina 2J 556: 21/JUN/10: BKO-OUA: J Cabin  
User currently offlineabrelosojos From Venezuela, joined May 2005, 5088 posts, RR: 55
Posted (3 years 12 months 3 days 2 hours ago) and read 19467 times:

Feedback always appreciated.




I > Background:
As some of you know, I was in Nigeria for a project in April. I had to pay a visit back to check on implementation in June, and decided to take a week break to visit some of the lesser known countries. I have always wanted to go to Mali, Burkina Faso, and Benin – so that is exactly what I did. Now, between BKO and OUA, you had a choice of airlines and I decided to try Air Burkina.

This report is going to be many of “firsts” on A.Net. It will be the first report on Air Burkina, the first featuring a Group Celestair airline, the first on the routing from BKO-OUA, the first featuring the countries of Mali and Burkina Faso. I mean, how cool is a trip to any city called Ougadougou! I am actually shocked at the lack of coverage of Western Africa on A.Net, and hope this starts changing things.

II > Pre-Flight:

a) Before Airport:
Air Burkina is an airline headquartered in the Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso. It is the national airline, operating scheduled services to one domestic destination (Bobo-Dioulasso), as well as regional services to Togo, Benin, Mali, Niger, Côte d'Ivoire and Ghana (among others) from its main base at OUA. Along with Air Mali (and Air Uganda), it is owned by Group Celestair.

Air Burkina has a relatively well maintained website at http://www.air-burkina.com/. While I could see the fares and flights, it only allows you to “hold” a booking. You then have to go to their office to have it ticketed. Given the (lack of) penetration of the internet in this part of the world, I was actually quite impressed by the setup. An airline should not have e-commerce as a priority if that distribution model is not relevant. Anyways, Orbitz surprisingly had Air Burkina tickets and I was able to book the one-way with relative ease. Of course, no seat selections – but that is OK on such flights.

b) At Airport:
After a wonderful 3 days in Mali, I made my way to the airport. Bamako is a very “conventional” West African airport – and it feels like in a perpetual work in progress. Actually, compared to some other “gateways” in the region, it is rather relaxed. But then again, I did not go during the “ex-Colonial” rush flight (i.e.: AF). The agent at check-in was really nice and I was soon able to get my boarding pass, and my window seat. I also managed to take random 2J souvenirs.

Immigration was remarkably smooth – and the official was super duper nice. He asked me about my trip, and when I’d be back in Mali. Aaw. Why can’t these people be there all across the world? Anyways, after immigration, I made myself to the departure area which also had a small lounge on the side. The lounge was nothing to write home about … and was manned by two rather indifferent women. One of them made me a café and I sat down with and a bottle of water. As boarding was called, I made a quick visit to the lounge bathroom, before heading to the gate. The lounge bathroom was “interesting” (see picture) … I can only imagine what the general usage bathroom would look like.

We were bused to our aircraft (in Air Mali’s colors) which had arrived from DKR and bound to OUA. Boarding (like other African countries) was chaotic. Thankfully, my seat was up in front, and I soon sank into the rather nice leather JCL. The flight attendant came soon thereafter with a welcome drink – much needed – and, an offer to hang my jacket. I was impressed that she was able to do this even as crazy boarding continued on the narrow M80 aisles. Major props.

J load was 90%, and Y load was 100%.

Airport - External:

(Bamako Airport)


Check-in:



Airport - Internal:



(FIDS)
NONE

(Post Security @ BKO)
NONE


Scenes of the tarmac:

NONE


Lounge

(Generic Lounge)

*

*
(Lounge bathroom)

Boarding:


(Gate area – ILBST very much in action)


III> In-Flight:

a) Service Schedule + Impressions:
Prior to take-off, a drink service of water and OJ and distribution of newspapers. After take-off, the nicest cold towels I have encountered on a flight in a long time (and nice embroidered), and then drinks and dinner. Keep in mind that block time was only 1,25.

b) Aircraft + Seats:
Air Burkina’s flight was operated by an Air Mali liveried M87. The airlines pool aircraft and I was not surprised by this. I seem to be on a run of these confused flights (EI/UA, and another coming soon). Anyways, the aircraft looked pleasant, and the Business Class cabin was in good condition. Of course, an aircraft of this age shows it – for example, the gloomy 1980s/1990s yellowish lighting. Having said that, the cabin was immaculately maintained, and I was rather impressed by the seats. They are domestic U.S. leather seats in 2/2 layout – but much more plush and a slightly larger seat pitch. All in all, more than sufficient for a flight that was less than 500 mile in length. Only average thing in this “genre” was recline … it seemed to be nothing spectacular compared to other similar F/J type seats.

The bathroom was extremely well maintained throughout the flight. Again, kudos to the crew.

Aircraft:
(M87 @ BKO – of Air Mali)


Views from Aircraft:

NONE


General Seat Views + Seat Legroom

(Seat)


(Front of seat)
NONE

(Seat controls)
NONE

(Legroom: decent)


(Blanket)
NONE


Seat Recline + Angle View:


*


Cabin:


*


(Bathroom Amenities: surprised with the branded cologne)


c) Meal + Beverage:
Now, this is probably the highlight of my Air Burkina experience. I did not have much expectation on an intra-regional flight in Africa. Especially, given the flight was less than 500 miles. Wow, was I wrong!

Soon after take-off, the crew sprang into action. First came the drink service – which had generous amounts of alcohol. I was still recovering from the weekend so skipped the same. However, fellow JCL passengers took full advantage of it. The crew obliged attentively to each of the requests and I was impressed by the amount of alcohol consumed in this supposedly majority Muslim country. Definitely, a different version of Islam! The female FA came and set up my table. Now, I was again impressed by the 2J logoed linen – again, attention to detail that wins in my book. I was asked if I would like to eat (“Yes” was my response), and soon dinner was brought. Man, I was impressed! While there were no choices (come on, it is a 1,25 flight), the absolute quantity and quality of the food blew me away. Take a look at the picture yourself. There was a very nice fresh salad; lots of different warm breads in foil (!), a nice rice with seafood curry (excellent!); a decent dessert; and a great cup of café (though, they had no milk)! All this served with grace and panache in very nice 2J cutlery. I was really impressed. I think I am going to start sending these pictures to that airline whose JCL offering I ridicule … seriously folks, next time you sit on a short JCL hop, think of this meal – on a 90% load – and the crew able to do the entire service run within less than an hour!

Needless to say, I remain impressed – and communicated my pleasure to the crew prior to disembarking.

(Nice thick logoed cold towels)


(Menu)
NONE

(Nice table setting)


(Dinner on a flight less than 500 miles)


d) Inflight Entertainment:
Air Burkina has no IFE in the flight – no inflight magazines, nothing. While this was not a problem on such a short flight, it might be more troublesome would I have taken this all the way to MRS or ORY.

NONE

(“In-flight magazines”, Boarding Passes, etc.)


e) Crew:
I liked the crew on Air Burkina. They were definitely very (in my perception) African in their service delivery. They were helpful during boarding and throughout the flight – very quick with responding to call buttons. I was particularly impressed with how quickly they were able to get the entire service done on a packed flight. I did not find them to be particularly engaging with the passengers – it seemed like they were a little aloof, and my perception was that they did not have the natural warmth which is so obvious on crews from South Asia. Perhaps, experts on Western Africa can tell me the cultural nuances that I might have missed. Maybe, JCL passengers in this part of the world do not find it socially acceptable to chat up those not in their social strata? In any case, extremely efficient crew who must be lauded.

IV> Post-Flight:
Arrival at OUA was smooth and we walked from the parking stand to the “terminal”. Thankfully, I had no checked bags, and soon made it to the madness of yet another African city – where my French and negotiating skills ensured that I had a taxi without much anger ... hehe.

(Air Burkina @ OUA)

*

*
(Other ramp action)

V> Impressions + Scores:
I must admit to have been pleasantly surprised by Air Burkina. On a short flight, they clearly shone. Check-in was smooth, ground staff in BKO were pleasant, flight crew were efficient (though, could do with some lessons to be “smiling”), food was excellent, and seats more than adequate. The only thing that sticks out was the lack of IFE options. As I mentioned, not really an issue on these short flights, but I wonder if there is anything different on their offering to Europe. At the very least, a magazine would go places in entertaining passengers and promoting these two great countries. Another stand-out thing for me was the consistent and cool branding – from the check/in tags, to the meals settings, to the bathroom cologne, to the cold towel. Very impressive!

Air Burkina is an airline I would fly if I had choice. I would even be willing to pay a price premium for them. Thumps up for them.



Question for readers: I benchmark the service with the overall average; and, am thinking of comparing just within cabin type (so, Y or Premium). What do y’all think? Feedback appreciated for sure.

VI> Other Trip Reports:

PREMIUM:
8.66: Brussels Airlines (93): FIH-BRU: 01/2010
8.64: Turkish Airlines (59): JFK-IST: 11/2008
8.63: Jet Airways (88): JFK-BRU: 10/2009
8.61: Air Canada (49): YYZ-SCL: 06/2008
8.54: Turkish Airlines (77): GRU-DKR-IST: 04/2009
8.36: Kingfisher (98): BOM-HKG: 01/2010
8.30: Jet Airways (74): KWI-BOM: 04/2009
8.23: United Airlines (72): SFO-SYD: 03/2009
8.11: Aeroflot (33): MOW-DEL: 09/2007
8.05: Air India (80): CCU-JFK: 06/2009
8.04: Korean Air (40): NRT-ICN: 10/2007
8.02: Delta Airlines (24): JFK-CDG: 08/2007
7.66: Sri Lankan (104): DEL-CMB: 07/2010
7.64: Royal Jordanian (91): AMM-YUL: 12/2009
7.61: China Southern (103): LOS-DXB: 04/2010
7.57: Pakistan Airlines (102): ORD-BCN: 06/2010
7.46: LAN (55): YYZ-JFK: 09/2008
7.82: Singapore Airlines (06): EWR-SIN: 09/2006
7.25: Iran Air (88): BOM-IKA: 12/2009
7.23: Virgin Atlantic (81): BOS-LHR: 07/2009
7.14: Swiss (52): SCL-GRU: 06/2008
7.11: Aer Lingus (105): MAD-IAD: 05/2010
7.11: Austrian (79): VIE-JFK: 06/2009
7.07: Privatair (84): BOM-FRA: 08/2009
7.02: Qatar (68): DOH-JFK: 01/2009
6.96: Etihad (61): JFK-AUH: 12/2008
6.93: Delta Airlines (18): SEA-JFK: 11/2006
6.84: ConViasa (65): CCS-DAM: 01/2009
6.82: Air Burkina (106): BKO-OUA: 06/2010
6.81: Air Canada (17): ICN-YYZ: 10/2006
6.70: KLM (32): EBB-AMS: 08/2007
6.52: Emirates (99): LHR-DXB: 02/2010
6.39: South African (97): EZE-JNB: 01/2010
6.36: Privatair (60): MUC-BOS: 12/2008
6.29: TAM Brasil (96): POA-EZE: 02/2010
6.25: Korean Air (45): NAN-ICN: 10/2007
6.21: Iberia (87): BOS-MAD: 10/2009
6.11: TAP Portugal (53): GRU-OPO: 06/2008
6.00: Gulf Air (75): BOM-BAH: 04/2009
5.88: African Express (89): DXB-NBO: 11/2009
5.75: Singapore Airlines (16): CCU-SIN: 10/2006
5.64: SATA Azores (101): BOS-PDL: 04/2010
5.64: NorthWest (46): ICN-NRT-SEA: 10/2007
5.54: Ethiopian Airlines (95): ADD-BOM: 01/2010
5.46: Icelandair (83): KEF-BOS: 08/2009
5.39: LOT (54): WAW-JFK: 06/2008
5.21: Egypt Air (73): CAI-IST: 02/2009
5.07: TACA (66): JFK-SAP: 01/2009
4.42: Air France: CDG-JNB (25): 08/2007

ECONOMY: Long + Medium:
9.26: Air India (48): JFK-DEL: 02/2008
7.38: Avianca (01): BOG-LIM: 07/2006
7.07: Sri Lankan (62): KWI-CMB: 12/2008
7.00: LAN (94): IPC-SCL: 01/2010
6.41: Avianca (78): JFK-BOG: 05/2009
6.41: American Airlines (58): LHR-BOS: 11/2008
6.39: Condor (85): SEZ-FRA: 09/2009
6.26: Jet Blue (21): CUN-JFK: 02/2007
6.06: Air Canada (04): YYZ-YVR: 09/2006
5.89: USA 3000 (19): PUJ-BDL: 01/2007
5.85: Spanair (69): MAD-LPA: 02/2009
5.79: Air New Zealand (42): RAR-NAN: 10/2007
5.52: Aerolineas (86): USH-AEP: 10/2009
5.46: TAP Air Portugal (23): OSL-LIS: 05/2007
5.19: Air Europa (70): LPA-MAD: 02/2009
5.16: Iberia (71): MAD-BOS: 02/2009
5.11: Air China (82): FRA-PEK: 08/2009

ECONOMY: Short
8.56: Paramount Airways (38): BLR-MAA: 09/2007
8.56: Kingfisher (64): HYD-CCU: 12/2008
8.24: Kingfisher (14): IXA-GAU: 10/2006
7.87: Indian (34): BOM-MAA: 09/2007
7.72: Alliance Air (13): CCU-IXA: 10/2006
7.57: Indian Airlines (10): DEL-CCU: 09/2006
7.23: West Jet (03): YYC-YVR: 09/2006
7.15: JetLite (37): BOM-GOI: 09/2007
6.98: Air Koryo (100): PEK-FNJ: 04/2010
6.70: Spice Jet (09): CCU-DEL: 09/2006
6.63: Air Fiji (44): NAN-SUV: 10/2007
6.63: Jazeera (67): DAM-KWI: 01/2009
6.58: Air Tran (02): EWR-MDW: 08/2006
6.48: Air India Express (63): CMB-MAA: 12/2008
6.44: CO Micronesia (39): ROR-YAP: 10/2007
6.41: Pacific Sun (43): NAN-SUV: 10/2007
6.37: Skybus (47): SWF-CMH: 02/2008
6.33: Kenya Airways (29): NBO-BJM: 08/2007
6.33: Sky Europe (56): LTN-BTS: 10/2008
6.31: Indigo (15): GAU-CCU: 10/2006
6.31: easyJet (57): BUD-LTN: 11/2008
6.22: Air Link Swazi (28): MTS-JNB: 08/2007
6.22: Air India (36): HYD-BOM: 09/2007
6.13: Adam Air (07): SIN-CGK: 09/2006
6.13: Air Rarotonga (41): RAR-AIT: 10/2007
6.00: Transairways (27): INH-MPM: 08/2007
5.95: Air Canada (05): ALB-YYZ: 09/2006
5.85: SAS Norge (22): OSL-AES: 05/2007
5.81: LAM Mozambique (26): JNB-MPM: 08/2007
5.69: Air Deccan (12): IXZ-CCU: 10/2006
5.67: Rwanda Air Exp (30): KGL-NBO: 08/2007
5.37: Felix Airways (92): SCT-SAH: 12/2009
5.11: Aero Republica (76): BOG-CCS: 04/2009
5.07: Go Air (35): MAA-HYD: 09/2007
5.00: Sky Airline (51): IQQ-SCL: 06/2008
4.96: Valuair (08): CGK-SIN: 09/2006
4.78: Air Comet Chile (50): SCL-IQQ: 06/2008
4.74: Fly 540 (31): MYD-LAU: 08/2007
4.33: Viva Aerobus (20): ELP-MTY: 02/2007
4.11: Air Sahara (11): CCU-BOM: 09/2006

(Note on Codes: Y – Economy, J – Business, F – First :: I/D – International/Domestic :: SR/MR/LR – Short/Medium/Long Haul)
(Note on Date: Dates are modified to be +/- 3 days from actual flight date to not reveal actual flight pattern)

VII> Other Pictures:

(This is Bamako!)

*



Live, and let live.
43 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlinemtaabq From United States of America, joined Oct 2009, 81 posts, RR: 0
Reply 1, posted (3 years 12 months 3 days 2 hours ago) and read 19417 times:

Amazing. Absolutely bleeping amazing. I love these TR's on smaller somewhat obscure airlines. It reminds me there's life and experiences to be had and things to see all over this big round ball on which we live. Kudos, abrelosojos, and my sincere thanks for sharing!

User currently offline9W748Capt From United States of America, joined Feb 2008, 580 posts, RR: 1
Reply 2, posted (3 years 12 months 2 days 23 hours ago) and read 19118 times:

Quoting mtaabq (Reply 1):
Amazing. Absolutely bleeping amazing.

Seriously. I'm speechless. Mr. Abrelosojos, what the heck kind of job do you have where you get paid to travel the entire world in J-class? I clearly chose the wrong profession!

Just amazing that you're able to see and experience so much of the world, and also share it with us. Thank you! Would love to see more pics of Bamako and Ouagadougou if you have the time!


User currently offlineMHTripple7 From United States of America, joined Feb 2008, 1105 posts, RR: 8
Reply 3, posted (3 years 12 months 2 days 23 hours ago) and read 19050 times:

Wow, Air Burkina looks like a pretty nice airline. Would never have expected that!

Quoting abrelosojos (Thread starter):
Anyways, Orbitz surprisingly had Air Burkina tickets and I was able to book the one-way with relative ease. Of course, no seat selections – but that is OK on such flights.

This is possibly the most surprising part of the whole Trip Report. I've found Orbitz unable to ticket flights on most African routes on most African carriers.

Quoting abrelosojos (Thread starter):
Soon after take-off, the crew sprang into action. First came the drink service – which had generous amounts of alcohol. I was still recovering from the weekend so skipped the same. However, fellow JCL passengers took full advantage of it. The crew obliged attentively to each of the requests and I was impressed by the amount of alcohol consumed in this supposedly majority Muslim country. Definitely, a different version of Islam! The female FA came and set up my table. Now, I was again impressed by the 2J logoed linen – again, attention to detail that wins in my book. I was asked if I would like to eat (“Yes” was my response), and soon dinner was brought. Man, I was impressed! While there were no choices (come on, it is a 1,25 flight), the absolute quantity and quality of the food blew me away. Take a look at the picture yourself. There was a very nice fresh salad; lots of different warm breads in foil (!), a nice rice with seafood curry (excellent!); a decent dessert; and a great cup of café (though, they had no milk)! All this served with grace and panache in very nice 2J cutlery. I was really impressed. I think I am going to start sending these pictures to that airline whose JCL offering I ridicule … seriously folks, next time you sit on a short JCL hop, think of this meal – on a 90% load – and the crew able to do the entire service run within less than an hour!

Crap... this is just awesome! U.S. carriers, please learn from Air Burkina.

Awesome trip report on yet another very rare route. Thank you!


User currently offlineabrelosojos From Venezuela, joined May 2005, 5088 posts, RR: 55
Reply 4, posted (3 years 12 months 2 days 22 hours ago) and read 18863 times:

Quoting mtaabq (Reply 1):
Amazing. Absolutely bleeping amazing. I love these TR's on smaller somewhat obscure airlines. It reminds me there's life and experiences to be had and things to see all over this big round ball on which we live. Kudos, abrelosojos, and my sincere thanks for sharing!

= Haha. Thanks. Yup - it really is an amazing planet we live in. I am reminded of it every time I go through these experiences. Some people struggle and complain, I say ... bring it on!

Quoting 9W748Capt (Reply 2):
Seriously. I'm speechless. Mr. Abrelosojos, what the heck kind of job do you have where you get paid to travel the entire world in J-class? I clearly chose the wrong profession!

= Hehe. This is coming from my own pocket ... and no, I am not super rich. You'd be surprised how a good travel agent can find you awesome deals ... and I have an angel in Caracas. Also, I haven't bought a new car since 1998 ... which causes major shock when I go to a decent restaurant in any Latin country  . Priorities, I guess.

Quoting 9W748Capt (Reply 2):

Just amazing that you're able to see and experience so much of the world, and also share it with us. Thank you! Would love to see more pics of Bamako and Ouagadougou if you have the time!

= Pics of Ouaga will come in the next report ...

Quoting MHTripple7 (Reply 3):
Wow, Air Burkina looks like a pretty nice airline. Would never have expected that!

= Isn't it surprising? I mean, there are so many carriers out there with such tremendous service that we have never heard of. BTW, when are we seeing pics of Namibia?

Quoting MHTripple7 (Reply 3):

This is possibly the most surprising part of the whole Trip Report. I've found Orbitz unable to ticket flights on most African routes on most African carriers.

= Me too mate.

Quoting MHTripple7 (Reply 3):

Crap... this is just awesome! U.S. carriers, please learn from Air Burkina.

= Not just U.S. ... carriers in Europe and Latin America can learn a lot as well.

Quoting MHTripple7 (Reply 3):
Awesome trip report on yet another very rare route. Thank you!

= Anytime.

Saludos,
A.



Live, and let live.
User currently offlineSpeedbird741 From Portugal, joined Aug 2008, 654 posts, RR: 0
Reply 5, posted (3 years 12 months 2 days 21 hours ago) and read 18846 times:

Seriously, these African reports of yours KICK ASS! Please keep 'em coming!
I was really under impressed by BKO airport though, didn't expect it to be so "rudimentary". On the other hand Air Burkina looks like they have a nice little operation going on. And of course the meal service....WOW!

Quoting abrelosojos (Thread starter):
the cabin was immaculately maintained

Good going Air Burkina. This is something I feel some African carriers tend to slack on, which is a pity truly as this is one of the things passengers notice and remember most.

Quoting MHTripple7 (Reply 3):
U.S. carriers, please learn from Air Burkina.


I second that, and the same goes for European carriers.



Great job Abrelosojos! And once again please keep these African reports coming.



Speedbird741



Boa noite Faro, Air Portugal 257 climbing flight level 340
User currently offlineakhmad From Netherlands, joined Sep 2005, 2460 posts, RR: 53
Reply 6, posted (3 years 12 months 2 days 17 hours ago) and read 18455 times:

Hi A.,

Congratulations on your superb and very entertaining first A.net report of Mali and Burkina Faso. My first impression about the countries was that the people are relaxed about photo-taking at the airport. It's surprising to find such chatty and friendly official. How one can set the tone of an enjoyable nice trip.

The JCL service was indeed impressive. Welcome drinks, table set, delicious food on appealing crockery and served by responsive cabin attendants.

It seems to be another successful trip of yours again and of course, being multilingual has another advantage.

Thanks for sharing.

Cheers,
Suryo



Friends forever
User currently onlineThe777Man From United States of America, joined Jul 1999, 6557 posts, RR: 55
Reply 7, posted (3 years 12 months 2 days 16 hours ago) and read 18310 times:

Excellent rapport again with very nice pictures,Alex! Air Burkina seems very nice, very impressive service on such a small plane on such a short flight. I also really like the branded products like the cold towel,

Mostly I'm jealoues that you went to BKO; a city I've always been curious about.

Looking forward very much to read more about your travels in Africa!

The777Man



Need a Boeing 777 Firing Order....Further to fly....CI, MU, LX and LH 777s
User currently offlineMaverickM11 From United States of America, joined Apr 2000, 17444 posts, RR: 46
Reply 8, posted (3 years 12 months 2 days 11 hours ago) and read 17846 times:

Was the "new" terminal in OUA done yet?

Quoting abrelosojos (Thread starter):
how cool is a trip to any city called Ougadougou!

A little less cool after spending a few days there!

[Edited 2010-09-02 07:25:50]


E pur si muove -Galileo
User currently offlineabrelosojos From Venezuela, joined May 2005, 5088 posts, RR: 55
Reply 9, posted (3 years 12 months 2 days 10 hours ago) and read 17781 times:

Quoting Speedbird741 (Reply 5):
Seriously, these African reports of yours KICK ASS! Please keep 'em coming!
I was really under impressed by BKO airport though, didn't expect it to be so "rudimentary". On the other hand Air Burkina looks like they have a nice little operation going on. And of course the meal service....WOW!

= Well, wait until you see OUA ... BKO was like Changi in comparison  .

Quoting Speedbird741 (Reply 5):

Good going Air Burkina. This is something I feel some African carriers tend to slack on, which is a pity truly as this is one of the things passengers notice and remember most.

= Agreed.

Quoting Speedbird741 (Reply 5):
Great job Abrelosojos! And once again please keep these African reports coming.


= I have some very interesting ones ... with one that I am especially proud of. BTW, do you live in the region?

Quoting akhmad (Reply 6):
My first impression about the countries was that the people are relaxed about photo-taking at the airport. It's surprising to find such chatty and friendly official. How one can set the tone of an enjoyable nice trip.

= Ya - the people were very nice. I know Burkina Faso has the reputation for being efficient in the region ... but I personally found Mali much nicer.

Quoting akhmad (Reply 6):
Welcome drinks, table set, delicious food on appealing crockery and served by responsive cabin attendants.

= And don't forget ... all within a 1 hour 20 minute flight.

Quoting akhmad (Reply 6):
It seems to be another successful trip of yours again and of course, being multilingual has another advantage.

= Defintely helps. It would be much harder to travel here with Français.

Quoting The777Man (Reply 7):
Air Burkina seems very nice, very impressive service on such a small plane on such a short flight. I also really like the branded products like the cold towel,

= Yup. Met too.

Quoting The777Man (Reply 7):
Mostly I'm jealoues that you went to BKO; a city I've always been curious about.

= PM me your address ... I will send you a postcard when I am there next ... or, better ... join me  . I want to go to Timbouctou in October or November.

Quoting MaverickM11 (Reply 8):
Was the "new" terminal in OUA done yet?

= Will you be shocked if I say .... no  ?

Quoting MaverickM11 (Reply 8):
A little less cool after spending a few days there!

= Oh come on ... you can't expect it to be what it's not. When were you there? Why? And, I liked Bamako much more than Ouaga.

Saludos,
A.



Live, and let live.
User currently offlineMaverickM11 From United States of America, joined Apr 2000, 17444 posts, RR: 46
Reply 10, posted (3 years 12 months 2 days 9 hours ago) and read 17614 times:

Quoting abrelosojos (Reply 9):
Oh come on ... you can't expect it to be what it's not. When were you there? Why? And, I liked Bamako much more than Ouaga.

I was there during FESPACO 2009 since I wanted to go to OUA and I figured that would be the best time since it's a big event. I had low expectations but I had fun; that said, I'm not sure I would recommend it to anyone nor would I want to go back.



E pur si muove -Galileo
User currently offlineContact Air From Germany, joined Apr 2001, 1154 posts, RR: 13
Reply 11, posted (3 years 12 months 2 days 8 hours ago) and read 17502 times:

Hi Alex,

Really outstanding report of a very unique airline and routing.

Quoting abrelosojos (Thread starter):
I have always wanted to go to Mali, Burkina Faso, and Benin – so that is exactly what I did.

Somehow I envy you a bit - you manage to travel to the really "exotic" countries which most of us will probably never visit. But I really enjoy reading about your experiences.

Quoting abrelosojos (Thread starter):
(Dinner on a flight less than 500 miles)

Really impressive indeed.

Regards
Christoph


User currently offlinesw733 From United States of America, joined Feb 2004, 6321 posts, RR: 9
Reply 12, posted (3 years 12 months 2 days 7 hours ago) and read 17394 times:

Quoting abrelosojos (Thread starter):
how cool is a trip to any city called Ougadougou

Indeed, the greatest named city in the world when it comes to pronunciation!


User currently offlinePlaneHunter From Germany, joined Mar 2006, 6758 posts, RR: 77
Reply 13, posted (3 years 12 months 2 days 7 hours ago) and read 17350 times:

Hi Alex,

very enjoyable stuff, simply great that you regularly deliver reports about these small exotic carriers.

Quoting abrelosojos (Thread starter):
I am actually shocked at the lack of coverage of Western Africa on A.Net, and hope this starts changing things.

Well, I'm not surprised about that. West Africa is not a major tourist area and we don't have many people here who write about business trips.

Quoting abrelosojos (Thread starter):
(Lounge bathroom)

Wow, I don't want to know how the regular bathroom looked like...

Quoting abrelosojos (Thread starter):
Dinner on a flight less than 500 miles

Very impressive!


PH



Nothing's worse than flying the same reg twice!
User currently offlineglobalflyer From United States of America, joined Dec 2005, 926 posts, RR: 3
Reply 14, posted (3 years 12 months 2 days 7 hours ago) and read 17341 times:

Hi Alex ... again what an awesome report. Bamako does not look at all like what I thought! Keep up the great work! Wonderful TR's as always!

Cheers,
Liam



Landing on every Continent almost on an annual basis!
User currently offlinesw733 From United States of America, joined Feb 2004, 6321 posts, RR: 9
Reply 15, posted (3 years 12 months 2 days 6 hours ago) and read 17227 times:

Quoting globalflyer (Reply 14):
Bamako does not look at all like what I thought!

Bamako is very interesting, having been lucky enough to be there twice. Some parts of it are very nice, green, and relatively (key word) well off...others are complete pits with disgusting conditions and Baghdad-esque surroundings. As is the case with many large cities in Africa, it has a LOT of contrast in one city...


User currently offlineMaverickM11 From United States of America, joined Apr 2000, 17444 posts, RR: 46
Reply 16, posted (3 years 12 months 2 days 5 hours ago) and read 17168 times:

Quoting akhmad (Reply 6):
Congratulations on your superb and very entertaining first A.net report of Mali and Burkina Faso

Hey now there are at least two other trip reports to OUA, including yours truly 



E pur si muove -Galileo
User currently offlineCysafan From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 17, posted (3 years 12 months 2 days 5 hours ago) and read 17146 times:

Another great trip report alex!!  
Quoting abrelosojos (Thread starter):
Dinner on a flight less than 500 miles)

Wow!! The quantities are really huge and the food looks really delicious.. Mmm... Seafood curry!! 

d) Inflight Entertainment:

[quote=abrelosojos,reply=0](Lounge bathroom)

Lol!! But the washroom looks horribly unattractive. That 's a minus for that lounge..

After and all , a really good trip report , I will give 10 for that!!   Thanks for sharing!


User currently offlineabrelosojos From Venezuela, joined May 2005, 5088 posts, RR: 55
Reply 18, posted (3 years 12 months 2 days 4 hours ago) and read 17002 times:

Quoting MaverickM11 (Reply 10):
I was there during FESPACO 2009 since I wanted to go to OUA and I figured that would be the best time since it's a big event. I had low expectations but I had fun; that said, I'm not sure I would recommend it to anyone nor would I want to go back.

= I have always wanted to go to FESPACO - perhaps in the near future. Is it as good as people claim it to be?

Quoting Contact Air (Reply 11):
Somehow I envy you a bit - you manage to travel to the really "exotic" countries which most of us will probably never visit. But I really enjoy reading about your experiences.

= Thanks. I cannot really complain about my life.

Quoting sw733 (Reply 12):
Indeed, the greatest named city in the world when it comes to pronunciation!

= Say it after me ... Wagaaaaaaa  .

Quoting PlaneHunter (Reply 13):
very enjoyable stuff, simply great that you regularly deliver reports about these small exotic carriers.

= Try PH.

Quoting PlaneHunter (Reply 13):
Well, I'm not surprised about that. West Africa is not a major tourist area and we don't have many people here who write about business trips.

= Yup.

Quoting PlaneHunter (Reply 13):
Quoting abrelosojos (Thread starter):
(Lounge bathroom)

Wow, I don't want to know how the regular bathroom looked like...

= Next time I go to Bamako, I must venture just for you  .

Quoting globalflyer (Reply 14):
Hi Alex ... again what an awesome report. Bamako does not look at all like what I thought! Keep up the great work! Wonderful TR's as always!

Cheers,
Liam

= Thanks Liam.

Quoting sw733 (Reply 15):
Bamako is very interesting, having been lucky enough to be there twice. Some parts of it are very nice, green, and relatively (key word) well off...others are complete pits with disgusting conditions and Baghdad-esque surroundings. As is the case with many large cities in Africa, it has a LOT of contrast in one city...

= Were you there for work?

Quoting MaverickM11 (Reply 16):
Hey now there are at least two other trip reports to OUA, including yours truly

= I am sorry. I wasn't able to find these reports. Could you please post the link?

Quoting Cysafan (Reply 17):
Lol!! But the washroom looks horribly unattractive. That 's a minus for that lounge..

= Well, it was "interesting"  .

Quoting Cysafan (Reply 17):
After and all , a really good trip report , I will give 10 for that!! Thanks for sharing!

= Thanks a lot.

Saludos,
A.



Live, and let live.
User currently offlineWhereToNext From United States of America, joined Jul 2010, 96 posts, RR: 0
Reply 19, posted (3 years 12 months 2 days 4 hours ago) and read 16926 times:

Alex,

Cool new location! Were you able to visit Tombouctou on your trip? I must ask, when you take these side trips from work, do you go along with a colleague or do you take on these interesting destinations solo?

Quoting abrelosojos (Thread starter):
(This is Bamako!)

Bamako looks beautiful! A lot greener than I thought.

Quoting abrelosojos (Thread starter):
Question for readers: I benchmark the service with the overall average; and, am thinking of comparing just within cabin type (so, Y or Premium). What do y’all think? Feedback appreciated for sure.

   Seems like a logical upgrade. Then you can assign grades that are relatively aligned to similar products among different airlines.

Regards,
Matt



Next Adventure: TBD
User currently offlineMaverickM11 From United States of America, joined Apr 2000, 17444 posts, RR: 46
Reply 20, posted (3 years 12 months 2 days 3 hours ago) and read 16909 times:

Quoting abrelosojos (Reply 18):
I have always wanted to go to FESPACO - perhaps in the near future. Is it as good as people claim it to be?

It's hard to compare it to anything since it's obviously not Cannes, but I was more interested in the vibe of the city during a big event rather than the event itself. The city didn't seem that much more alive, other than at night along the main street. Finding out when and where the actual events took place was hard unless you just happened to come upon the red carpet (as we did) or a screening.

Quoting abrelosojos (Reply 18):
I am sorry. I wasn't able to find these reports. Could you please post the link?

Well, lower your TR expectations first, and then try these:

AF CDGNIMOUA, ET Oualfwadd For Fespaco 2009! (by MaverickM11 Mar 13 2009 in Trip Reports)
Getting Out Of Africa OUA-CDG (pics) (by TwoLz2Rn Jul 30 2007 in Trip Reports)
A Very Long Day… CVG-OUA (some Pics) (by TwoLz2Rn Jul 29 2007 in Trip Reports)



E pur si muove -Galileo
User currently offlineSpeedbird741 From Portugal, joined Aug 2008, 654 posts, RR: 0
Reply 21, posted (3 years 12 months 2 days 3 hours ago) and read 16890 times:

Quoting abrelosojos (Reply 9):
BTW, do you live in the region?

Don't live there, but I was raised in that magnificent continent and go there all the time.


Speedbird741



Boa noite Faro, Air Portugal 257 climbing flight level 340
User currently offlineabrelosojos From Venezuela, joined May 2005, 5088 posts, RR: 55
Reply 22, posted (3 years 12 months 2 days 3 hours ago) and read 16840 times:

Quoting WhereToNext (Reply 19):

Cool new location! Were you able to visit Tombouctou on your trip? I must ask, when you take these side trips from work, do you go along with a colleague or do you take on these interesting destinations solo?

= No Timbouctou. Apparently, they had just kidnapped a Spaniard and I could not let anyone to take me - and, Air Mali's flights did not work with my schedule. Usually, I go solo ... have friends in many places, and also like traveling by myself.

Quoting WhereToNext (Reply 19):

Bamako looks beautiful! A lot greener than I thought.

= I was surprised as well.

Quoting WhereToNext (Reply 19):

Seems like a logical upgrade. Then you can assign grades that are relatively aligned to similar products among different airlines.

= Thanks for the suggestion.

Quoting MaverickM11 (Reply 20):

It's hard to compare it to anything since it's obviously not Cannes, but I was more interested in the vibe of the city during a big event rather than the event itself. The city didn't seem that much more alive, other than at night along the main street. Finding out when and where the actual events took place was hard unless you just happened to come upon the red carpet (as we did) or a screening.

= Good to know. I am surprised that it was this hard ... usually if you hang out at the one (two) expat hotels in these cities ... Ouaga 2000 in this instance ... you are quickly glued into the "elite" circuit ... will keep it in mind though.

BTW, the ET woman in your report is still the Airport Manager at OUA.

Quoting MaverickM11 (Reply 20):
Well, lower your TR expectations first, and then try these:

AF CDGNIMOUA, ET Oualfwadd For Fespaco 2009! (by MaverickM11 Mar 13 2009 in Trip Reports)
Getting Out Of Africa OUA-CDG (pics) (by TwoLz2Rn Jul 30 2007 in Trip Reports)
A Very Long Day… CVG-OUA (some Pics) (

= You're being too modest! They TR's were great. I wonder though if this is still a first for Bamako - definitely the first for the airline. Also wondering why my search did not pick these up.

Quoting Speedbird741 (Reply 21):
Don't live there, but I was raised in that magnificent continent and go there all the time.


Speedbird741

= Cool. Where in the Continent?

Saludos,
A.



Live, and let live.
User currently offlineSpeedbird741 From Portugal, joined Aug 2008, 654 posts, RR: 0
Reply 23, posted (3 years 12 months 2 days 1 hour ago) and read 16745 times:

Quoting abrelosojos (Reply 22):
Cool. Where in the Continent?

Angola. And BTW, how come no reports from LAD Abrelosojos? Would love to hear from you on that experience.
Since your report on SN I have been seriously thinking about trying them out. Involves a connection but heck...the more fun to it!


Speedbird741



Boa noite Faro, Air Portugal 257 climbing flight level 340
User currently offlineairpearl From Malaysia, joined May 2001, 946 posts, RR: 26
Reply 24, posted (3 years 12 months 1 day 23 hours ago) and read 16632 times:

Amazing insight! Thanks for this wonderful and rare report - I've always thought Ougadougou was one of those cities that needed to be visited at least once just for because of the name, and now I know someone who has! Bamako looks very interesting too from your pics. Some of the places you go to are really quite "exotic" (I do realize that word is relative), and I really like these jaunts through West Africa; so - for purely selfish reasons - I hope your clients keep you there for a while so we get more from you from this region  

Air Burkina - and what a treat that is - looks surprisingly nice. The meal looks amazing for such a short flight. Thanks again for this report.

Cheers
airpearl


25 sw733 : Waaagaaadoooogooooo Nope, visiting friends
26 The777Man : I've always wanted to go to TOM but I can't now since I'm still on dialysis; I can't be away for more than three days...... That said, I still manage
27 ODAFZ : As always a very nice and entertaining report. Loved the picture of the bathroom in BKO and I was kind of expecting this picture and I was not all sur
28 burj : Wow...as I just commented on another TR....these reports are like XXX travel porn! KEEP THEM COMING! When I saw the picture of the meal I actually sai
29 Post contains images faucett : Alex As always, your TR are reading candy. Keep them coming! I really envy both the airlines you've flown and the places you've been, but it it's a go
30 flpuck6 : Hello, Anyone notice the boarding card is the exact same as an Air France boarding card ? Most likely the same DCS is used ? Thanks for such an origin
31 Post contains images abrelosojos : = Aah ... mi querida Angola ... don't worry, a LAD report will be forthcoming . And I will make it from an extremely exotic city to boot ... Haha ...
32 BA319-131 : Hi Alex, Thanks for this, a very interesting report on an airline I am likely to never fly, nut how great were they!! - Interesting they see the use a
33 Post contains images shamrock604 : Another masterpiece from the Master Trip writer!!! I too am quite envious at the amount of exotic airlines you get to sample! Looking forward to your
34 abrelosojos : = Mark, it was USD 520 - only USD 120 over YCL. Not a bad difference eh? = Ok. = Haha - Thanks mate. Saludos, A.
35 sfflyer123 : Very nice TR. The picture of the bathroom definitely did not look appealing. I have never been to sub-saharan africa, and i probably won't go anytime
36 Twolz2rn : Great report! I wanted to try Air Burkina when I lived there, but my school wouldn't allow us since it was "unsafe"! How did you like Ouagadougou? I l
37 Post contains images Severnaya : Hello Alex, Just wow! Thanks for sharing this wonderful trip report on an airline most us will never fly! Hmm, that doesn't look to be too clean Yeah
38 Post contains images abrelosojos : = Glad to provide you of an insight to global bathrooms . See, I do serve a purpose! = When was this? I am assuming this was Air Burkina pre-AKFED? =
39 twolz2rn : It was in the summer of 2007, so post AKFED, but our school still thought it was unsafe. Oh well! Still enjoyed Ouaga!
40 NZ107 : Hi Alex, Another great report on some African airline I've never heard of before! Good to get a taste of what it's like to travel around Africa. The c
41 PZ707 : ¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡Que vida tenes brother!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Very Very nice t/report, as usual on you, really i enjoy a lot reading your post. Well done!!
42 airbuseric : Hi Alex, fantastic report, once again. Congrats on the MD87, a type definitely not much around and especially when flying on these airlines in Africa!
43 reifel : Hi Alex! Again an excellent report. Incredible to read about those countries and that airline. Must have been a very enjoyable ride obviously. Looking
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