Kenya Airways, better avoid.

Old Aug 30, 2017, 4:13 am
  #1  
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Kenya Airways, better avoid.

I tried two months ago, on my own account, a business return from South Africa to Europe. Yes, it was a great deal so I took into account that there probably was a catch.. On the way up, on a Ebraer, non of the onboard entertainment was working. Yes, a seven hour flight to Nairobi. Food was far from Business class.. At Nairobi, the lounge was worse than your soccer canteen at the end of a busy Saturday. Not even mentioning that twice the power went off. It was dirty, there was no control at the door, everyone just walked in, there were broken fridges with warm beer. The flight to Amsterdam was good on the 787, service and everything on board. Same on the return, Ams Nairobi was okay. Nairobi to SA was again greeted with no entertainment on board (different aircraft). Another seven hours of zilch. Food again was Emirates economy on Kenya airways Business servings. On top of that, there is nothing onboard other than a salty pack of nuts, that can be served. I contacted Kenya Airways after two weeks as my miles did not show up, and up till today, nobody responded (yes, I have a personal email and yes after two weeks she apologised but also couldn't explain that nobody came back to me). Via Twitter they were able to give me my miles but the amount isn't correct. Asking via Twitter for contact details did provide nothing and I was told to connect via the website. All in all I would not recommend to fly them. I do have to give them credit for one thing. Upon leaving Vic Falls, the pilot did do a turn around and gave everyone a wonderful views of the waterfalls.
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Old Aug 30, 2017, 4:40 am
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Originally Posted by longtimeblue
I tried two months ago, on my own account, a business return from South Africa to Europe. Yes, it was a great deal so I took into account that there probably was a catch.. On the way up, on a Ebraer, non of the onboard entertainment was working. Yes, a seven hour flight to Nairobi. Food was far from Business class.. At Nairobi, the lounge was worse than your soccer canteen at the end of a busy Saturday. Not even mentioning that twice the power went off. It was dirty, there was no control at the door, everyone just walked in, there were broken fridges with warm beer. The flight to Amsterdam was good on the 787, service and everything on board. Same on the return, Ams Nairobi was okay. Nairobi to SA was again greeted with no entertainment on board (different aircraft). Another seven hours of zilch. Food again was Emirates economy on Kenya airways Business servings. On top of that, there is nothing onboard other than a salty pack of nuts, that can be served. I contacted Kenya Airways after two weeks as my miles did not show up, and up till today, nobody responded (yes, I have a personal email and yes after two weeks she apologised but also couldn't explain that nobody came back to me). Via Twitter they were able to give me my miles but the amount isn't correct. Asking via Twitter for contact details did provide nothing and I was told to connect via the website. All in all I would not recommend to fly them. I do have to give them credit for one thing. Upon leaving Vic Falls, the pilot did do a turn around and gave everyone a wonderful views of the waterfalls.
Seems that have some mistake on the report. The biggest Embraer (E195) have a range of 2300 mi (4250km). With a 7-hours flight, the fuel tanks are dry on the middle of the trip.

I'm asking because I have a flight with KY on the next month in a E195, but not with this length and I'm a bit curious.

Best
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Old Aug 30, 2017, 4:40 am
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As someone who flew the same route multiple times (CPT-AMS) with KQ, I have to disagree with most of what you wrote.
The food is indeed sub-par to other airlines, but that's about the only thing I agree with.
I never had issues with the IFE on the E190, although the selection is limited but that's only an issue if you fly it very often
The KQ lounge in NBO can be busy at times, but otherwise I will take it every day over the CPT Bidvest lounge, or the KL crown lounge in AMS, or many other lounges.

As for miles crediting, only once I had an issue which was solved quickly through the flyingblue website retroclaim form, KQ are pretty reactive when you open a ticket on their website, but in your case no need for that.

And welcome to FT...
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Old Aug 30, 2017, 4:40 am
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Originally Posted by pmichelazzo
Seems that have some mistake on the report. The biggest Embraer (E195) have a range of 2300 mi (4250km). With a 7-hours flight, the fuel tanks are dry on the middle of the trip.

I'm asking because I have a flight with KY on the next month in a E195, but not with this length and I'm a bit curious.

Best
They stop on the way in either LVI or VFA for refuelling.
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Old Aug 30, 2017, 4:49 am
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Cape Town - Nairobi is in the Embraer with a stop at Livingstone or Victoria Falls
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Old Aug 30, 2017, 7:44 am
  #6  
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Originally Posted by pmichelazzo
Seems that have some mistake on the report. The biggest Embraer (E195) have a range of 2300 mi (4250km). With a 7-hours flight, the fuel tanks are dry on the middle of the trip.

I'm asking because I have a flight with KY on the next month in a E195, but not with this length and I'm a bit curious.

Best
It stopped along the way for refuel and picking up pax and unloading some. At Vic falls.
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Old Aug 30, 2017, 7:45 am
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Originally Posted by Ditto
As someone who flew the same route multiple times (CPT-AMS) with KQ, I have to disagree with most of what you wrote.
The food is indeed sub-par to other airlines, but that's about the only thing I agree with.
I never had issues with the IFE on the E190, although the selection is limited but that's only an issue if you fly it very often
The KQ lounge in NBO can be busy at times, but otherwise I will take it every day over the CPT Bidvest lounge, or the KL crown lounge in AMS, or many other lounges.

As for miles crediting, only once I had an issue which was solved quickly through the flyingblue website retroclaim form, KQ are pretty reactive when you open a ticket on their website, but in your case no need for that.

And welcome to FT...
I'm glad we agree to disagree.
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Old Aug 30, 2017, 9:11 am
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I am not sure what is the purpose of your post.

As you said "it was a great deal" and there was probably a catch.
Didn't you do a minimum amount of research to understand why the itinerary added so many hours relative to the nonstop CPT-AMS?
Didn't you realize that there were two intermediary stop and a change of plane?
Didn't you realize that the CPT-NRB was on a small E90 which is a small regional African aircraft with regional African service, not longhaul service?

With all due respect, I do not understand why you are surprise if you did not spend the couple of minutes to check the itin before booking.

KQ on its NBO-Europe is not the greatest airline, but its business class on 787 offers full-flat bed (74") and lots of space. Better than having an AF NEV seat.
And the lounges are ST lounges, so no different from what you get with AF or KL.

Last edited by brunos; Aug 30, 2017 at 9:28 am
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Old Aug 30, 2017, 10:51 am
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I gotta agree with what others have posted:

1. Welcome to FlyerTalk
2. While KQ is not SQ or CX, the service is earnest
3. On my JNB-NBO-BKK flights, KQ soft product was equal to what I've had from UA, AA, et al.
4. As noted above, KQ hard product is as good or better than many AF flights

In short, I would def take KQ again. YMMV
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Old Aug 30, 2017, 11:53 am
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It's a terrible product, I have flown my whole life but Kenya Airways offers a crappy product. Yes, a life time plat. I honestly don't understand why you guys support them but I am glad you do cause I heard KLM needs to keep on funding them. Like I stated, no onboard entertainment on both flights, the food was far from business class and there was nothing on board other than a pack of peanuts and if you accept that twice the power went off at the the airport and still think this is better than the lounge at Amsterdam than I am probably living on different planet. I guess I am these days used to Emirates and the product they provide. This post was made because if anyone out here was thinking; 'let me try Kenya Airways'... they better think again.
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Old Aug 30, 2017, 12:04 pm
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Originally Posted by longtimeblue
and there was nothing on board other than a pack of peanuts and if you accept that twice the power went off at the the airport and still think this is better than the lounge at Amsterdam than I am probably living on different planet.
I hardly see how it is KQ's fault if NBO airport had power issues...
And what's your story about the pack of peanuts? you get 2 warm meals on a 7 hour flight, now we can argue about the quality of the food, but the quantity is more than enough, I usually skip one of them anyway.
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Old Aug 30, 2017, 1:46 pm
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Originally Posted by longtimeblue
'let me try Kenya Airways'... they better think again.
I have, numerous times, and I have no intention of thinking again.

I actually like their 787 business class product. The seat is good, the catering just fine. Perhaps not as good as a few years ago, but still good enough.

Their 737s are fine for day flights, I actually like their rather old but comfy and cushy business class seats. Not that great to sleep in, though, so that dead-of-the-night JNB-NBO flight is best avoided.

I've never tried their Embraers, last time I flew NBO-CPT it was nonstop on a 737.

The NBO lounge has failed to impress on my most recent visits, but I can say the same about the majority of lounges I find myself in.

As for the IFE, I'm not really that interested. I keep an eye on the flight tracking map if available, thats usually about it.

Johan
Johan
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Old Aug 30, 2017, 7:12 pm
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I flew KQ in Y from HKG to BKK and the seating and service was perfectly comparable, if not better, than what one would get on KL or AF for such a flight. A warm meal was served and the IFE was more than adequate.
Haven't flown the regional African routes though so can not comment on thos...
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Old Aug 30, 2017, 9:26 pm
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Originally Posted by longtimeblue
It's a terrible product, I have flown my whole life but Kenya Airways offers a crappy product. Yes, a life time plat. I honestly don't understand why you guys support them but I am glad you do cause I heard KLM needs to keep on funding them. Like I stated, no onboard entertainment on both flights, the food was far from business class and there was nothing on board other than a pack of peanuts and if you accept that twice the power went off at the the airport and still think this is better than the lounge at Amsterdam than I am probably living on different planet. I guess I am these days used to Emirates and the product they provide. This post was made because if anyone out here was thinking; 'let me try Kenya Airways'... they better think again.
What I can't understand is your disappointment with regional African service. Do you get IFE on European regional services? Do you get a great meal?
Apparently you enjoyed KQ longhaul service, not their African regional service. But to you think that KL and AF offer the same product longhaul and European?
Each region (Europe, Africa, US, LATAM, SEA, China,..) has different standards for their regional services. And Africa does not have the highest and KQ simply adapts to the market.
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Old Aug 31, 2017, 3:12 am
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Originally Posted by brunos
What I can't understand is your disappointment with regional African service. Do you get IFE on European regional services? Do you get a great meal?
Apparently you enjoyed KQ longhaul service, not their African regional service. But to you think that KL and AF offer the same product longhaul and European?
Each region (Europe, Africa, US, LATAM, SEA, China,..) has different standards for their regional services. And Africa does not have the highest and KQ simply adapts to the market.
+1

OP should consider the per capita GNP of the RSA (~5200 $) and Kenya (~1500$), both way above average in Africa)* before comparing standards to those of the Netherlands or France.

* I don't include the per capita GNPs of those countries that, due to oil, have GNPs that are about as high as that of EU countries when, at the same time, a very large part of the population lives under conditions of extreme poverty.
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