TAAG Angola Flight Information:
KDT650 01JUN30JUN 1234567 255772 LADLAD2200 05101LISLIS J
Actual Departure Time:
22:05 (Taxi from stand)
Actual Arrival Time:
04:55 +1 (Touchdown)
3.8 years old, delivered to TAAG Angola in September 2006
On board TAAG's 772
Think Emirates A380, BA London City Premium Service, or SQ's Newark flight, this is TAAG's version of a flagship route. In TAAG's world, this is the perfect flight offering the full-on service to its full potential. The crew were friendly, looking fresh, and the cabin was spotless. The ambience however, was slightly dimmed and the seat coloring was far too dark for my taste.
Arriving at my seat, I discovered that it was the bulkhead located right after Door 2L. I had not bothered to check before, but I was a little disappointed as it was far too close to the galley and the crew. However if the flight wasn't going to be full in Business Class, I didn't think there would be any issue with switching seats later.
The seat was quite comfortable, and even more so than those on other reputable airlines to be honest. TAAG's Business Class product on this aircraft also offers lie-flat seats and personal IFE screens (though the screens are TINY). Legroom was typical J class, and each seat had a wrapped blue blanket placed on top of the seatbelts. Other amenities also include the usual power and USB ports etc. Basically, the hardware is quite competitive and nothing sub-standard to the usual offering.
Small IFE screen
Welcome drinks were offered right after the first group of passengers had boarded. This included a first tray service that offered Champagne, and was shortly followed by a second service that offered a selection of orange juice and water.
Naturally, I was celebrating with a glass of champagne
As one of the crew passed by my seat, I requested to change to another window seat if it was possible.
"Excuse me, if the flight is not full, I would like to change to another seat please"
"Please wait. After takeoff ya? I tell you"
Doors were closed at 10pm, and moments later the same crew returned.
"Ok. You change now. But quickly please ya?"
The view from the last row in the cabin
Amenity kits were distributed
Tonight's purser on the flight made an announcement to welcome us on board and to inform us that the flight time tonight was approximately 7 hours. The safety video was then played on the IFE screens while the engines powered on as the aircraft was still idle on the stand.
At 10:05pm, we taxied away from the stand for a quick hop to the runway. At 10:10pm, we thundered down the runway and began our 7 hour journey to Lisboa. After reaching cruising altitude, the seatbelt sign was switched off and the crew was released to prepare for the in-flight service.
Service commenced with the distribution of headsets
Followed by hot towels
Views of the cabin during service preparations
Table linens placed on my table
The meal service was conducted from a trolley and on offer was a selection of alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages, and a choice of meal. Menus are not offered on TAAG.
"I have beef, chicken, or fish. What you like to have?"
"No I have Fanta, Coke, and soft drink"
"Vodka & Tomato Juice please"
My tray and drink were placed on my table with a genuine smile, and a "Please enjoy" with that too. My tray consisted of a starter, main course, butter, crackers, bread, and plastic cutlery. The starter was some type of beef which looked a little similar to Carpaccio and was accompanied with melon. The main course consisted of fried chicken with a type of sauce, and came with pasta and green beans. No effort was made to remove the plastic/foil covering from the plates, which has its positives and negatives I suppose. Freshness is preserved, while the look is not.
Introducing the ronerone-made TAAG Angola Bloody Mary!
I did not touch the starter, as I am not a fan of Carpaccio, nor anything related to it. The melon that accompanied it was soggy and far from fresh. The main course wasn't any better either. The pasta was drenched in butter and the chicken and vegetables were cooked in a jelly-like sauce/broth which seemed that the whole meal was overcooked. The meal was quite tasteless! The Bloody Mary however, was excellent, and that is mainly because the tomato juice was very tasty. It was the same brand that was offered in the lounge, and the result of 4 Bloody Mary's that turned my lounge experience into an enjoyable buzz.
The crew returned with the trolley to collect my tray once I was through, and to also offer dessert.
"Finished? May I?"
"Yes. Thank you"
"What do you want? I have cheese, fruit, or cake"
"You want drink something?"
"I'll have a glass of water please"
"Water only? I have Bailey's you don't like?"
"I had too much Vodka. But thank you"
"No problem. Here you go"
Once again, the dessert plate was covered with plastic, and consisted of a Black Forest cake with strawberry cream and sauce on the side. Wow, Black Forest cake is so retro, I can't remember when the last time I had it was, but I did enjoy it though. I think TAAG's desserts are their strongest point in the culinary experience.
"May I? You enjoy?"
"Yes thank you"
"You want me get anything more?"
"No thank you. I will sleep now"
"Ah yes. But please, you close window after ya?"
After the meal service, passengers got into their zones of either sleeping, lounging, or watching IFE. The cabin lights were dimmed shortly afterwards, and the overall mood was calm for most of the flight.
Cabin shots after the meal service
I was feeling quite sleepy and in view of the long itinerary ahead that was to transport me back to Dubai, it was best that I caught a few hours of sleep. But prior to that, I powered on the IFE for a quick inspection.
Also known as Palanca, TAAG's IFE offering is quite decent. It offers an AVOD selection of Movies, TV programs, Radio, and Games. A range of relatively recent movies were showing including the likes of Avatar and what not. As always, IFE does is not my favorite aspect of the flight, though I can definitely say that TAAG offers a lot more than Jet Airways and Royal Jordanian in that area, albeit a very small IFE screen.
I settled for the Route Map
I then turned my seat into its lie-flat position before dozing off for most of the remaining flight time. In its slightly angled lie-flat position, I found TAAG's bed to be quite comfortable. My feet were not touching the seat in front of me, and I was able to move about and find a comfortable position.
In bed with TAAG
Right before I fell asleep, I noticed the crew operating the Business Class cabin, appear from Economy Class and following them were several groups of passengers that were seated in the back of the bus. These passengers were allowed to sit in Business Class for the remainder of the flight. In the end, as we neared Lisboa, the Business Class load factor was 100%!
After closing my eyes, I was suddenly awoken to the movement of one young girl attempting to cross over my legs and hop into the empty window seat next to me that was already stacked with some of my things.
"Me and my partner want to sit together, and we like two seats"
"You move somewhere else?"
"Didn't you pay for Economy Class?"
Before she responded, a crew had already appeared to take her aside and have a word with her in Portuguese. I was a revenue passenger in Business Class and I was getting what I wanted. Rightfully so, the teenage girl flocked away from my seat afterwards and I was able to fall asleep.
I woke up approximately one hour before landing, to find that the breakfast trolley was already in my area of the aisle. The crew pulled out a tray, and placed it on my table and offered drinks from the bar.
"Good morning. Sleep good?"
"Yes. Thank you"
"What you like to drink?"
"Orange juice and coffee please"
Breakfast was a one-tray service which included a cheese sandwich, a deli meat sandwich, and a cup cake, all of which were horrible. The bread was stale and very dry, and without any spread it was hard to swallow. I left the meaty sandwich to the side and ate the cheese sandwich and the cupcake.
Cabin during the meal service
My tray was collected as soon as the seatbelt sign was switched on. At 4:30am Portugal local time, the captain made an announcement to inform us that we had begun our initial descent towards Lisboa and that we were expected to land within 30 minutes.
Cabin at top of descent
The crew readied the cabin and eventually took their seats during final approach.
D E S T I N A T I O N
At 4:55am, we touched down at Lisbon Portela Airport and hence, bringing my TAAG Angola experience to an end. After a quick taxi, we docked at a remote stand and deplaned through mobile steps. I thanked the crew for their great efforts and proceeded inside Lisbon for my transit to London.
My British Airways flight departed from Terminal 2, which was the newer side of the airport. I found both Terminals 1 and 2 to be more of a dump. While Terminal 2 looked new, it offered very little entertainment and shopping, and the terminal map was completely misleading. Internet stations and smoking rooms were clearly marked on the maps however they were nonexistent.
Considering that the airport has a rather active marketing department, I quite expected a lot more than what was really on offer. Nevertheless, I made my connection on British Airways and that was the most important thing.
C O N C L U S I O N
While the overall service on TAAG is quite weak in comparison with the other usual airlines, this was definitely not the purpose of the report.
This trip was based on the journey itself, which I found to be quite easy and very pleasant. I had expected the utmost worst for my transit in Luanda, only to find that it was easier than many other airports. I would not take any of those comments on Skytrax seriously anymore, because the reality of it was nothing like that. TAAG, in addition to Luanda's airport staff really tried their best, and I appreciated every bit of it.
Anyone can do this, only never forget the word 'Transito' !
The following is an extensive show of all the TAAG souvenirs I gained after this trip:
TAAG Coffee cup, napkin holders, and airline-branded peanut packs
TAAG amenity kit and coasters
TAAG in-flight magazine and paper airplane
Inside TAAG's magazine
TAAG's IFE guide
From the seat-back!
This concludes my Trip Report. I hope that you have enjoyed it; your comments are always welcome!
E Q U I P M E N T
- Canon 50D
- Sigma 10-20mm Wide Angle
- Sigma 10mm Fisheye
- Canon 18-55mm
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F L I C K R
F A C E B O O K
R. Wadei Hawi
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I have a range of taxi, takeoff, landing, announcement, and safety videos posted. Feel free to view them!
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