Virgin Airlines - finally booked

Jan 5th, 2005, 07:49 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 186
Virgin Airlines - finally booked

After spending two years reading this board, we finally booked from Orlando to Johannesburg with two months in South Africa. Read the negative reports on SAA, so asked Delta (using f.f. miles) for alternatives. KLM could get us to S.A. in April, but not return us until after August. Now that would be wonderful, but our budget could not survive that long. So booked Virgin Airlines for 10,000 more f.f. miles.
Would appreciate comments on this airline. Anything we should be prepared for, good or bad. Flyiing cattle class
From searching the web I found a coach that would get us from Heathrow to Gatwick on the way back to the U.S. Do we need to pre-book for this. Do we have to carry our bags from Heathrow to Gatwick, or does the airline organize this? On the way out we have two nights in London.
Now we can get excited. So much to do, so little time.
twoaussies is offline  
Jan 5th, 2005, 08:13 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 9,216
Haven't flown Virgin to SA (BA/ SAA only) but have flown them across the Atlantic.

Service is reasonably good, seats aren't THE smallest I've been squished into and time keeping and luggage handling seem reasonably good too.
Kavey is offline  
Jan 5th, 2005, 12:22 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 12,843
You may want to check this website to find out the aircraft type(s) on your flights and view seat maps with seat ratings:

There's also a discussion forum where you'll find lots of info on all things Virgin. Have a great trip!
Patty is offline  
Jan 6th, 2005, 06:05 PM
Join Date: Mar 2004
Posts: 526
My nephew and son flew Virgin to England and loved it because of the video games!! If you are traveling with teenagers this may be a consideration!!
Philbill is offline  
Jan 9th, 2005, 12:59 PM
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 1,895
If you can afford to upgrade to Premium econ. seats, sit upstairs on the 747 and it's a pretty good experience. They do have a great entertainment system as mentioned previously, and the service is good with young, energetic flight attendants.
moremiles is offline  
Jan 9th, 2005, 05:26 PM
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 5,553
Perhaps I have pretty low standards, but I have never been bothered by the economy class of SAA. I have always been able to watch 2 or 3 newer movies that are not yet out on DVD, play Tetris for a few hours and somehow sleep for a couple hours.

Of course I would much rather go Business Class on SAA which is absolutely DIVINE! Still thinking about a wonderful hot fudge sundae that was served after a great dinner on my last time over! While I will be going steerage class from LAX - London, I will then be treated to Business Class from London to Joburg and Joburg to Lusaka and back!

I could be wrong, but I believe less ff miles are required from SAA than from Virgin Atlantic. Plus, with SAA a person gets a free add-on flight to just about anywhere SAA flies in Southern Africa. Last time I checked, Virgin Atlantic did not offer a free transfer to Victoria Falls, Lusaka, Malawi, Windhoek or anywhere else that SAA flies.
Roccco is offline  

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