Stretch 8
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Posts: 2468
Joined: Fri May 28, 1999 4:00 am


Mon Jul 23, 2007 10:14 am

This coming November, I will be trying South African Airways from LHR to Cape Town and return. (I originally thought about flying SAA from my home airport of IAD all the way to SA, but decided 17 hours in Y was too much; plan to use BA miles for a free CW ticket from IAD to LHR, then on to SA).

I have heard that the long-haul SAA product is quite good; the A340--600s have decent seat pitch, excellent cabin service, etc. But it is still a 12-hour flight. Also, planning on travel within SA from CPT to East London, and return to CPT from Durban. Any experiences worth sharing? Thanks.
Maggs swings, it's a drive deep to left! The Tigers are going to the World Series!!!
Posts: 7628
Joined: Mon Feb 16, 2004 7:49 pm


Mon Jul 23, 2007 2:23 pm

SAA 346 is a nice flight if you get the right seat. There are some good seats to be had in Y, specifically the overwing exit row (I think it is 45), and there is one aisle seat near the back that has the seat in front missing because of the crew rest escape hatch in the floor, which gives you lots of legroom. Bulkheads are usually good but not on the 346 because there is an airbag in the seatbelt which is extremely uncomfortable. The seatbelt airbag is also on the overwing exit seats AC and HK but not in the centre DEFG block. Failing that you are in a regular seat with 34" pitch.

In flight service includes AVOD and a phone at every seat. Meal service will be hot dinner with two main meal choices and hot breakfast also with two meal choices. All drinks onboard are free and there will also be duty free sales, SAA's catalogue is pretty comprehensive. You will also receive a basic amenity kit with eye shades, socks, earplugs, toothbrush and toothpaste.

Enjoy your flight!
After Monday and Tuesday even the calendar says WTF...
Posts: 5547
Joined: Wed Oct 08, 2003 3:39 pm


Mon Jul 23, 2007 2:45 pm

Quoting Andz (Reply 1):
Failing that you are in a regular seat with 34" pitch.

Which is damn good as it is...  Smile

I'm one of those people who even managed to get lots of sleep on a 10:30 hours flight when they hadn't increased the pitch, and regarding the service, I can only say that, in 31 flights with SAA, I had several excellent ones, a couple of OK flights, but barely, if ever, an unpleasant one.

You can find a couple of trip reports on here about flights on them as well - and, as it so happens, here's mine  Wink FRA-JNB-CPT And Back On SAA: A346, B738 And A319 (by Leskova Jun 17 2005 in Trip Reports)

... ok... I know... shameless plug...  Smile

But maybe it'll help you decide anyhow.
Smile - it confuses people!

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