Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Frequent Traveler? How to travel with Kenya Airways and NOT be miserable

It has been a long time  that I have not flown on Kenya Airways. That is, until this month, when I had to do two back-to-back trips on the airline.  My last two trips before those were on Ethiopian and Emirates.  Yes, Emirates.  That far. Abidjan-Dubai, Dubai-Nairobi.  And for my next trips, it will most probably be Emirates.  The question will be: "Why do that long distance?" And the answer will be: "Because I dont want to be miserable".

For many a Frequent Traveler (allow me to use initial capitals, in respect for those who do miles and miles in the air) what you want is to arrive and face the business for which you traveled. 

Anyway, here are pieces from my experience:

  1. Dont buy a business class ticket
  2. Buy travel insurance, if you can 
  3. Leave 4-5 hours of transit time in your booking
  4. Bring your own blanket 
  5. As much as you can, do not check in luggage
  6. If you are checking in anything, keep a day's provision of clothes in your carry-on
  7. Please set yourself in "Patience, perseverance and no-worry" mode for the whole of the trip
  8. Check in online
  9. Arrive at the airport early, earlier than usual
  10. Choose a seat up front, if you want to have a choice in the meal/drink service
  11. Keep 1 kilo short of the allowed baggage 
  12. Insist on getting receipts for all payments made
  13. Please print "Final Destination [Airport Code]" for both legs of your trip
  14. Wrap your bag, taking care to have the "Final Destination" tag visible
  15. If on transit, insist they put the yellow  "TRANSFER" tag on the bag
  16. Once checked in,  go and verify the boarding gate printed on the boarding pass/on the screen (especially if in NBO)
  17. Ask AGAIN, at the gate, when they will open or start boarding and keep an eye.
  18. Do not expect announcements in any other language other than English and Kiswahili
  19. Make mental  time for  a one-hour delay in take off.
  20. Do not expect the crew to be friendly, mind your business
  21. Keep a credit {not debit} card or cash if you plan to buy something
  22. Try as much as possible not to request  the attention of the crew
  23. If on transit, and you need to ease yourself in NBO, make ample time, you may need to queue
  24. If for any reason you miss your flight due to late arrival, insist that  the new booking be printed, especially if it is on a partner/another airline
  25. Keep cash/cards handy. 
I have no plans to explain stuff I have written here.  You may still have  a great flight with KQ without doing any of the above..

Bon voyage!


bankelele said...

Nice tips for international travel around Africa too, on any airlines :)

Anonymous said...

Nice ,nice tip!.