Swiss or BA to Tanzania??

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Mar 12th, 2006, 11:53 AM
  #1
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Swiss or BA to Tanzania??

Last year all of you on the Asia forum were incredably helpfull, so I've decided to ask for you help again.
My husband and I have the opportunity to fly to Tanzania on our points. Here's the somewhat complicated question:
We could either fly Swiss Air business class this year or British Air business class next October. Which is the better airline to fly the long trip?
Need your help very soon as we need to make our 25th anniversary trip plans.
Thanks to you all
didibobi is offline  
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Mar 12th, 2006, 12:00 PM
  #2
 
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BA would be my choice, because their business class seats lay flat (horizontal), whereas Swiss business class seats are at an angle, making it a bit more difficult to sleep comfortably. Some people find it a big difference, others find it not much of a difference -- but that is the major distinction between the two.

Also, in most cases if you have enough miles with Swiss then you can also fly with Lufthansa, whoise service and seats are similar to those of Swiss.

Also, it can be extremely challenging to find frequent flyer seats to Africa, especially if you are looking for 2 business class seats. In most cases, you will do well to plan very far in advance and be prepared to be flexible in your travel dates.
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Mar 12th, 2006, 12:58 PM
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BA serve DAR with a 767 from LHR; I find the business cabin (with the "New" Club World fore-and-aft pods) on the 767 to be very cramped compared to, say, NCW upstairs on the 747 (but I don't like the NCW seats very much in the first place.)

The difference for me would be that the ZRH-DAR flight on Swiss is a daytime flight, with a very short layover at ZRH if you arrive from, say, JFK on the AA codeshare. Total travel time to DAR from NYC is 18 hours and change, vs. 28 or 29 hrs. via LHR, with a long, long layover in London. Two nights on plane is a bit much IMO.

Rizzuto, Im betting the OP's "choice" is because they have AA miles and Swiss' partnership with AA ends later this year.

Oh, and happy anniversary!
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Mar 12th, 2006, 01:16 PM
  #4
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Gardyloo, you are correct! Do you know when Swiss and AA part company? Also, the AA operator says there is no first going to DAR from JFK. Could this be true?
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Mar 12th, 2006, 01:41 PM
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It's because Swiss only run 2-class (coach, business) aircraft between ZRH and DAR, and AA can't ticket you in F unless F is available throughout the itinerary. 2-class on BA too BTW.

LX awards using AA miles must be ticketed by 31 Oct 06; all travel complete by 31 Oct 07.
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Mar 12th, 2006, 02:04 PM
  #6
sandi
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Regardless which airline, where in Tanzania do you wish to visit?

The Northern Circuit Parks (Tarangire, Lake Manyara, Ngorongoro, the Serengeti) or those in the South (Selous, Ruaha, Mahale, Katavi). Neither Swiss or BA go into Kilimanjaro (JRO) which is the ideal for the Northern areas.

DAR in the South is good if visiting these parks. If arriving DAR and are doing the Northern parks, you'll need a flight to JRO or Arusha. If arriving Nairobi (NBO) which both airlines fly into/out of, you'd also need a flight to JRO.

However, DAR is good if you conclude your safari on the island of Zanzibar which is a 15-minute flight to DAR.

You can book the connecting ticket along with your International ticket, which will probably be a "paid" ticket as the carrier/s that fly these routes are not partcipants in any of these FF programs. Otherwise, this leg can be arranged along with your land package.

I'd suggest you decide where you wish to visit in Tanzania before firming up on your International flights.
 
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Mar 12th, 2006, 07:19 PM
  #7
santharamhari
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I fly BA all the time........plenty of miles and highly recommend their first and business class product......however, if you had the option to fly swiss and make your trip, this year.......i'd say go this year!!! However, i think Tanzania is very very busy and you may have to deciede very quickly, if you want all the camps/lodges you really want.

Hari
 
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Mar 12th, 2006, 10:51 PM
  #8
 
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FYI (no longer relevant to this thread I know)... Lufthansa's new long haul Airbuses have the horizontal seats - the older 747s do not - and neither do the older Airbuses. BTW I think no big airline has the same kind of seats in all of its planes - the newer the plane the better the seat generally.
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Mar 16th, 2006, 08:54 AM
  #9
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Thank you all for all your advice.
We've decided to book Swiss for this year, but now I'm worried about what one of you said about Tanzania being crowded. I specifically picked Tanzania, because I thought it would be less crowded than South Africa.
We have nothing booked so far, but we are in touch with someone from Natural High Safaris.
Our plan is:
3 nights Nomads Serengeti
3 nights Nomads Loriondo
4 nights River Sands
6 nights somewhere on Zanzibar or any other beach in the area.

Have we left it too late?
Should we just book now for next October?
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