Advice on Ethiopian Airways - Business Class

Old Apr 25, 19, 3:53 pm
  #1  
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Advice on Ethiopian Airways - Business Class

Hi All,
Need some of your advice, I am able to get Ethiopian Airways business class tickets (saver awards) from India to US, with my family and United tickets are all economy award travel.
Am 1K with United.
The only question I have is that, is the Ethiopian Airways, still a good bet to get, never ever flown that airlines and knowing some history of it, would you recommend it or not?

Thanks for all your help in advance, appreciate it.

AD
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Old Apr 26, 19, 8:14 am
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Originally Posted by aadilh View Post
Hi All,
Need some of your advice, I am able to get Ethiopian Airways business class tickets (saver awards) from India to US, with my family and United tickets are all economy award travel.
Am 1K with United.
The only question I have is that, is the Ethiopian Airways, still a good bet to get, never ever flown that airlines and knowing some history of it, would you recommend it or not?

Thanks for all your help in advance, appreciate it.

AD
Despite the recent MAX 8 loss, 74 year old Ethiopian is not just one of Africa’s leading airlines, it’s one of the world’s safest airlines. I’d certainly not hesitate to fly ET (I’ve not done so, but I’ve flown a number of African airlines such as BP, KQ, QM, SA, SW (and UM in better days), for instance, and some smaller, local carriers in various countries.

But both the airline, and the nation as a whole, have a history of excellent safety on a continent where aviation practices can sometimes be dicey. The US Federal Aviation Administration gives Ethiopia a Category 1 safety rating, the organization’s highest, which means it can operate flights to the US, which it does. The nation also passes muster with the EU’s European Aviation Safety Agency regulations.

Ethiopian Airlines, the national flag carrier, also has a trustworthy safety report card, and a large fleet — the biggest in Africa — of modern Boeing and Airbus airplanes. It flies among others the Boeing 787 Dreamliner, for which it was one of the earliest customers, and the Airbus A350. It’s also a leading member of Star Alliance, the largest airline alliance in the world, along with names such as Lufthansa, United and Singapore Airlines. As an alliance member, it must maintain stringent safety protocols.

The airline has a safety rating of six stars out of a possible seven on respected aviation site AirlineRating.com. Those ratings are based on safety rankings from international regulatory bodies and how often airlines have fatalities. - link to Gary Leff’s 12 Mar 2019 article in “The Points Guy” blog

Last edited by JDiver; Apr 26, 19 at 8:19 am
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Old Apr 26, 19, 11:23 am
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Originally Posted by JDiver View Post
Despite the recent MAX 8 loss, 74 year old Ethiopian is not just one of Africa’s leading airlines, it’s one of the world’s safest airlines. I’d certainly not hesitate to fly ET (I’ve not done so, but I’ve flown a number of African airlines such as BP, KQ, QM, SA, SW (and UM in better days), for instance, and some smaller, local carriers in various countries.
+1

It has a very good reputation. I have to confess that I've never flown it, but I did research it a fair amount in preparation for a possible trip. Even if the choice was business class between United and Ethiopian (or both in economy, for that matter), I'd choose Ethiopian first due to probably better service and the fact that business class on some United international flights is in a crowded 2-4-2 configuration.
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Old Apr 26, 19, 11:43 am
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I have flown ARN-ADD-CPT return in business class 1½ year ago. Nothing posh or spectacular but still good experience. The meals served (Etiopien food was also available) were tasty. I found the seats on the ET B772 to be better than on the newer B788 (despite the 2-3-2 configuration as opposed to 2-2-2 on B788)

I wouldn't hesitate to book.
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Old Apr 26, 19, 11:59 am
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I flew my 200th lifetime flight on Ethiopian last weekend - I have flown them to Africa, Europe, North America, South America and Asia. They are typically efficient without being flashy, but I love the injera service on flights out of Addis in Cloud Nine.

ET is a perfectly adequate choice for a longhaul itinerary if the schedules and price fit.
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Old Apr 26, 19, 2:35 pm
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Thank you all so much for your inputs...the whole 737 issue and couple of other news in the past was a bit rattling.
But am glad most of you had a decent experience with the airline.

The itinerary and award miles get me a much better deal on Ethiopian...so you think for the long haul this would be a good flight? especially with kids?

Last edited by beckoa; Apr 29, 19 at 8:35 pm Reason: merged consecutive posts
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Old Apr 27, 19, 2:58 am
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Originally Posted by aadilh View Post
so you think for the long haul this would be a good flight? especially with kids?
I believe we have already answered this above - no reason to ask again. Your kids will be fine.

You are overthinking this. No reason to hesitate, just go ahead and book!

Last edited by SK AAR; Apr 27, 19 at 3:03 am
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Old Apr 27, 19, 10:16 am
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Thanks
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Old Apr 29, 19, 8:38 pm
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Old May 1, 19, 2:07 pm
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Originally Posted by aadilh View Post
Hi All,
Need some of your advice, I am able to get Ethiopian Airways business class tickets (saver awards) from India to US, with my family and United tickets are all economy award travel.
Am 1K with United.
The only question I have is that, is the Ethiopian Airways, still a good bet to get, never ever flown that airlines and knowing some history of it, would you recommend it or not?

Thanks for all your help in advance, appreciate it.

AD
Perhaps I should ask, what is the alternative for you to ET in business class? United economy?
And where in US do you fly to?
ET business class is good, but it really depends on what you compare it to and which route/equipment. Some of the 777-300ER they often use on e.g. IAD the interior is already quite run down in my opinion despite aircrafts being pretty new. Multiple times had screens on the bulkhead C seats that couldn't be pulled up properly, my wife once had a screen that didn't work at all. And don't get me started on their 767's. But if you manage to get their A350ies, that is the best experience.
In flight service is usually fantastic, staff really friendly and helpful.

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Old May 1, 19, 9:23 pm
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Originally Posted by aadilh View Post
Thank you all so much for your inputs...the whole 737 issue and couple of other news in the past was a bit rattling.
But am glad most of you had a decent experience with the airline.

The itinerary and award miles get me a much better deal on Ethiopian...so you think for the long haul this would be a good flight? especially with kids?
I frankly would put 0% thought into the recent 737Max accident in terms of ET's safety, that could have happened to any carrier flying the plane. The more that comes out about that accident, I think Boeing and the FAA are to blame much more so than any single operator, Boeing failed on providing/requiring adequate training so airlines would buy the plane without re-certifying pilots.I think ET was just the unfortunate airline who got stuck with the airframe that had a massive fault early on, but from the sounds of it, sooner or later that could have well been SW, AA, UA, or any other highly regarded airline.

I've flown ET many times in business class and I like them, however be aware some 787's never got upgraded to new lie flat seats. All 777's are upgraded and all A350's were delivered that way. The airport in Addis is a dump but usually you don't have to spend too much time there. The flight banks are usually well timed for connections or are at the opposite side of the day where you get a hotel voucher and leave the airport anyway.
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Old May 2, 19, 12:12 am
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Originally Posted by dvs7310 View Post
however be aware some 787's never got upgraded to new lie flat seats.
Indeed, think all except 2? I ended up on one of these recently on ARN-ADD, was quite disappointed. I believe there is a thread elsewhere stating which tail numbers of 787 have the lie flats and which have the angled flat. However quite useless since ET often switch equipment last minute.
Seems A350 is flying on BOM-ADD today, would be a fully lie flat. And in my opinion the best business class experience on ET.
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