Rwandair Express reliability
Replies: 9 - Last Post: Jul 21, 2012 11:06 AM Last Post By: kigalilongwe
Dec 20, 2011 11:02 PM
Rwandair Express reliabilityHi,
My boyfriend and I will be finishing up an overland tour in Kampala, Uganda. We need to fly from Entebbe to Johannesburg for our onward flight to Frankfurt.
I've been looking at skyscanner and the cheapest and shortest flights seem to be with South African Airways ($519, 4 hr flight), and Rwandair Express ($369, 6 hr flight).
I've read mixed reviews about Rwandair and wondering what experiences people have had with them? Speaking to a travel agent here in Melbourne, Australia, they said they would only be confident with South African Airways, or Ethiopian or Kenyan airways. If our flight is cancelled or significantly delayed it could cause us to miss our flight to Frankfurt, as we only have a window of about 48 hours between the end of our tour and our flight to Frankfurt out of Jo'burg.
Any advice anyone has would be greatly appreciated!
Dec 21, 2011 2:02 AM
Dec 21, 2011 4:20 AM
2I fly regularly on RwandAir between Entebbe and Kigali. Most of the time the flights are actually early, and only once late as they changed the aircraft in Kigali to accommodate a lot of stand by passengers which took a bit of time.
They operate two brand new B737-800, often deployed on the route to Johannesburg, two leased - from GECAS - B737-500, two owned CRJ 200 and one leased Bombardier Dash 8-100.
I can only recommend them, friendly service included!
Dec 21, 2011 7:32 AM
Dec 21, 2011 10:49 PM
4Thanks for the replies.
The reason why we have to fly out of Jo'burg is because we purchased around the world tickets, which limits the countries we can fly into and out of.
I'm still not feeling 100% confident about Rwandair, but we may just go for it. In the off chance that our flight is delayed or cancelled without notification, is it expensive to book flights while in Africa?
Thanks again for everyone's advice so far! :)
Dec 22, 2011 6:56 AM
5I have flied Rwandair several times between Kenya, Rwanda, Burundi, Uganda at least. Never have they missed a flight, normally the flights are between 20-60 min ahead (so that is the danger), once they have been 90 min late (After a UAE flight), few times 20-30 min. They are more reliable than Kenyan Airways.
I am also intrigued about these "I have read mixed reviews".... they always sound so mysterious, in particular when they seem to be connected to unsubstantiated claims.
Dec 28, 2011 11:38 AM
6hey Fulana, long time without reading you around, hope you are well.
I am also intrigued about these "I have read mixed reviews
So do i, bet that she went on the Skytrax website, which claims to be the biggest 'independent' airline rating system in the world.
Skytrax is the aviation equivalent of Trip Advisor - worth an occasional look but in no way a reliable source. It's perfectly obvious that many of the "reviewers" either have some personal axe to grind, have wholly unrealistic expectations or have themselves caused the problems they're complaining about. I generally tend to trust the positive reviews more than the negative ones although the consistently poor reviews of one particular airline ( not in Africa) do accord with my own experiences.
Unfortunately this corrupt "world airline award" website has become big and is often used as a reference by the unsuspecting masses.
I have flown Rwandair on both domestic and international routes. All experiences went fine though never had a connecting journey with them. According to your itinerary, Rwandair operates the leg Entebbe - Kigali the evening only whilst the saturday a morning its rotation allows the connection to the leg Kigali - Johannesburg.
So, Air Uganda flies the morning flight to the rwandan capital easing flight to South Africa. both airlines have codeshare agreement, but in case of cancellation from Air Uganda on the weekday flights your timing would become really tight despite doable.
If i were you, i would choose the direct option with no hesitation
Jan 1, 2012 10:28 PM
7Thanks kigalilongwe. I didn't actually check any aviation review websites, just did a google search of reviews. My main concern is that my travel agent doesn't know anyone who's flown on the airline, and neither do I. Given our fairly tight turnaround of flights I just wanted to make sure we'd be booking with a fairly reliable airline.
Our flight to Frankfurt departs Johannesburg at 6.45pm on the 6th June, so a shorter flight from Entebbe arriving in Jo'burg on the 5th June would be ideal. I did see a Rwandair flight that went for about 6 hours on the 5th but it doesn't seem to be available anymore, so looks like Sth African Airways is our best bet anyway as all other flights are well over 5 hours in duration which we aren't keen on.
Thanks again for everyone's advice!
Jul 17, 2012 5:36 AM
8During the last year, Rwandair acquired several new airplanes and expanded their network notably. This has resulted/contributed to? several anomalies in their service which were not common previously. However, I have heard of flight delays only, not about of food poisoning or similar. Sorry about the bad experience.
In contrast, Kenyan Airways seems to have improved their services, have heard only positive stories about them lately.
Jul 21, 2012 11:06 AM
9sorry to read about the very poor experience left by Rwandair,
if you provide the exact day of your trip (on a PM if you prefer), some friends working at Rwandair, will easily find the reasons of the delays.
Also i'm pretty sure they will investigate the catering issues, and the lost luggage ordeal and feed back any mishap occuring that day to the appropriate management.
again, i really feel embarrassed this happened to you
@Fulana: catering aside, KQ is also a lottery where you rarely win ;-)
On skytrax (the online "bible" for airlines reviews) the 10 last reports average scoring is 2.5/10, but decreases steady when considering more reviews...
Edited by: kigalilongwe
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