Ethiopian Airlines

We're travelers here. Tourists can be found on that other board.
User avatar
leela
Stew Ingredient
Posts: 30182
Joined: Sun Dec 23, 2012 3:46 pm

Ethiopian Airlines

Post by leela » Sun Aug 05, 2018 4:12 pm

They're an obvious choice for my Malawi trips, budget-wise, but I've avoided them in the past. Not entirely sure why. Maybe a few years ago they were flying planes without seatback entertainment and/or had very long layovers.

But anyway, this time I've booked with them. £200 difference in fares is a lot, and it seems they have new planes on The LHR - ADD* route.
Has anyone flown with them? I gather that Addis airport is a bit grim, and losing luggage seems to be a recurring theme. I hope I don't regret this.

*I seem to have joined the club.
Pass the wine...

Chip_Oatley
Stew Ingredient
Posts: 28815
Joined: Sat May 17, 2008 5:39 pm

Re: Ethiopian Airlines

Post by Chip_Oatley » Sun Aug 05, 2018 4:17 pm

Yes. There are so many Ethiopians here that EA has direct, no-plane-change flights from IAD to ADD. I flew Business Class. It was OK. Older plane, sour-faced FAs, a ton of food (Ethopian and otherwise). Safety-wise, I don't know. Wasn't there some issue a few years back?

User avatar
cummy
Stew Ingredient
Posts: 9019
Joined: Thu Jan 03, 2013 2:17 pm

Re: Ethiopian Airlines

Post by cummy » Sun Aug 05, 2018 5:12 pm

leela wrote:
Sun Aug 05, 2018 4:12 pm
The LHR - ADD* route.
excuse me? what is this nonsense language that you are speaking in? :lol:

welcome to the club! hahahahaaaa.

i have never flown ET. they seem ok. the reviews seem to rate ET as average. they are a part of star alliance. they have a lot of shiny new planes - including the dreamliner 787 and airbus a350. in some random searches between LHR-ADD, i see at most 2 daily a350 flights. wow! i have yet to try the a350 (yeah, i know, but it's a long story), so i would in a heartbeat jump at the opportunity to try the a350 ... even better with a cheaper airfare.

here are some pics and reviews (of the ET a350):

https://thepointsguy.com/2017/03/inside ... -a350-900/

https://thepointsguy.com/reviews/ethiop ... -business/

i love how the cockpit windows make the aircraft look like it is wearing a mask!
Image

Image

Image

User avatar
leela
Stew Ingredient
Posts: 30182
Joined: Sun Dec 23, 2012 3:46 pm

Re: Ethiopian Airlines

Post by leela » Sun Aug 05, 2018 5:15 pm

The main legs are on an a350, Cummy!
Pass the wine...

User avatar
leela
Stew Ingredient
Posts: 30182
Joined: Sun Dec 23, 2012 3:46 pm

Re: Ethiopian Airlines

Post by leela » Sun Aug 05, 2018 5:19 pm

Ooh...and thanks for the links. I will, of course, be in the cheap seats. But as long as the entertainment's decent...
Pass the wine...

User avatar
leela
Stew Ingredient
Posts: 30182
Joined: Sun Dec 23, 2012 3:46 pm

Re: Ethiopian Airlines

Post by leela » Mon Aug 06, 2018 6:51 am

Chip_Oatley wrote:Yes. There are so many Ethiopians here that EA has direct, no-plane-change flights from IAD to ADD. I flew Business Class. It was OK. Older plane, sour-faced FAs, a ton of food (Ethopian and otherwise). Safety-wise, I don't know. Wasn't there some issue a few years back?
Nope, safety is supposed to be okay, from what research I've done. The incident that you're probably thinking of resulted from a hijacking.
Pass the wine...

User avatar
DCComic
Stew Ingredient
Posts: 16468
Joined: Thu Aug 18, 2016 1:42 pm

Re: Ethiopian Airlines

Post by DCComic » Mon Aug 06, 2018 7:18 am

Yes. Same route. All was fine, not grim. Take a book, find a seat and zen out.
פולאר הוא שקרן - I want my fucking money back - The only reason you continue to participate is because you hate me personally.

If you've got a blacklist I want to be on it.

https://maxkimberstudio.co.uk

User avatar
leela
Stew Ingredient
Posts: 30182
Joined: Sun Dec 23, 2012 3:46 pm

Re: Ethiopian Airlines

Post by leela » Mon Aug 06, 2018 8:25 am

Cool. Thanks DCC. I've got nearly six hours in Addis airport on the way home. And there's no PAYG lounge. So not grim is good news. At least I should be able to buy decent coffee.
Pass the wine...

User avatar
GLimpet
Stew Ingredient
Posts: 31120
Joined: Tue May 27, 2014 8:40 pm

Re: Ethiopian Airlines

Post by GLimpet » Mon Aug 06, 2018 9:49 am

They have a route to PNR.

I'm asking around. Some people down there must have used it.
Might have to use it myself some time, especially when France is in strike season.

User avatar
leela
Stew Ingredient
Posts: 30182
Joined: Sun Dec 23, 2012 3:46 pm

Re: Ethiopian Airlines

Post by leela » Mon Aug 06, 2018 11:30 am


GLimpet wrote:I'm asking around.
Thanks, I appreciate that.
Pass the wine...

User avatar
ManchVegas
Stew Ingredient
Posts: 9051
Joined: Sun Dec 30, 2012 6:41 am

Re: Ethiopian Airlines

Post by ManchVegas » Mon Aug 06, 2018 11:40 am

A lot of these airlines are run by non-Africans. I didn't realize that.

That doesn't mean it's any better or worse but I had a friend who worked for Kenya Airlines (Not sure if I got the name right) but it was really all non-Africans that were running the show.
Ritalin Brightens Your Day!

User avatar
GLimpet
Stew Ingredient
Posts: 31120
Joined: Tue May 27, 2014 8:40 pm

Re: Ethiopian Airlines

Post by GLimpet » Mon Aug 06, 2018 12:12 pm

leela wrote:
Mon Aug 06, 2018 11:30 am
GLimpet wrote:I'm asking around.
Thanks, I appreciate that.
So far, I'm hearing it's OK except if you have to wait long times in ADD "as it stinks".

User avatar
leela
Stew Ingredient
Posts: 30182
Joined: Sun Dec 23, 2012 3:46 pm

Re: Ethiopian Airlines

Post by leela » Mon Aug 06, 2018 12:49 pm

GLimpet wrote:
Mon Aug 06, 2018 12:12 pm
So far, I'm hearing it's OK except if you have to wait long times in ADD "as it stinks".
Oh. So I need a book, a seat and some air freshener.
Pass the wine...

User avatar
DCComic
Stew Ingredient
Posts: 16468
Joined: Thu Aug 18, 2016 1:42 pm

Re: Ethiopian Airlines

Post by DCComic » Mon Aug 06, 2018 4:12 pm

Look it up online - it's a huge, modern, featureless transit hall. You can get a coffee, a snack and a few trinkets. When we were there it was clean and didn't stink.
פולאר הוא שקרן - I want my fucking money back - The only reason you continue to participate is because you hate me personally.

If you've got a blacklist I want to be on it.

https://maxkimberstudio.co.uk

User avatar
leela
Stew Ingredient
Posts: 30182
Joined: Sun Dec 23, 2012 3:46 pm

Re: Ethiopian Airlines

Post by leela » Tue Aug 07, 2018 8:19 am

Oh. I've looked at a couple of review sites, and 'the worst airport in the world' is a recurring phrase.

http://www.airlinequality.com/airport-r ... a-airport/
Pass the wine...

User avatar
leela
Stew Ingredient
Posts: 30182
Joined: Sun Dec 23, 2012 3:46 pm

Re: Ethiopian Airlines

Post by leela » Tue Aug 07, 2018 10:27 am

Ugh. They also have a terrible record of losing people's baggage and either never finding it again, or taking forever to locate it, and another forever to return it.
I really should have read the airport reviews as well as the airline ones before booking. I'm glad your trip was hassle-free DCC. I'll be hoping for the same, but packing a lot more into my hand luggage than usual.
Pass the wine...

User avatar
GLimpet
Stew Ingredient
Posts: 31120
Joined: Tue May 27, 2014 8:40 pm

Re: Ethiopian Airlines

Post by GLimpet » Tue Aug 07, 2018 11:42 am

After reading those reviews, I now insist that you go and report back c/w with photos.

or there's always this:

https://www.ethiopianairlines.com/AA/EN ... cloud-nine

User avatar
DCComic
Stew Ingredient
Posts: 16468
Joined: Thu Aug 18, 2016 1:42 pm

Re: Ethiopian Airlines

Post by DCComic » Tue Aug 07, 2018 11:51 am

leela wrote:
Tue Aug 07, 2018 8:19 am
Oh. I've looked at a couple of review sites, and 'the worst airport in the world' is a recurring phrase.

http://www.airlinequality.com/airport-r ... a-airport/
Wow.
Whoever wrote that has never been to Luton.
פולאר הוא שקרן - I want my fucking money back - The only reason you continue to participate is because you hate me personally.

If you've got a blacklist I want to be on it.

https://maxkimberstudio.co.uk

User avatar
leela
Stew Ingredient
Posts: 30182
Joined: Sun Dec 23, 2012 3:46 pm

Re: Ethiopian Airlines

Post by leela » Tue Aug 07, 2018 12:43 pm

DCComic wrote:
leela wrote:
Tue Aug 07, 2018 8:19 am
Oh. I've looked at a couple of review sites, and 'the worst airport in the world' is a recurring phrase.

http://www.airlinequality.com/airport-r ... a-airport/
Wow.
Whoever wrote that has never been to Luton.
At least Luton has more than two toilets. And the toilets have seats.
Pass the wine...

User avatar
DCComic
Stew Ingredient
Posts: 16468
Joined: Thu Aug 18, 2016 1:42 pm

Re: Ethiopian Airlines

Post by DCComic » Tue Aug 07, 2018 12:53 pm

I feel as if we're discussing different places. I was last there about 5 years ago. I get that it might have deteriorated a little, but no so badly and not by removing toilets.
פולאר הוא שקרן - I want my fucking money back - The only reason you continue to participate is because you hate me personally.

If you've got a blacklist I want to be on it.

https://maxkimberstudio.co.uk

User avatar
leela
Stew Ingredient
Posts: 30182
Joined: Sun Dec 23, 2012 3:46 pm

Re: Ethiopian Airlines

Post by leela » Tue Aug 07, 2018 12:57 pm

DCComic wrote:I feel as if we're discussing different places. I was last there about 5 years ago. I get that it might have deteriorated a little, but no so badly and not by removing toilets.
It is odd. And I hope my experience will be closer to yours. But all three of the airport review sites (the others were foursquare and sleeping in airports) were full of the same tales of woe.
Pass the wine...

Chip_Oatley
Stew Ingredient
Posts: 28815
Joined: Sat May 17, 2008 5:39 pm

Re: Ethiopian Airlines

Post by Chip_Oatley » Tue Aug 07, 2018 1:04 pm

Its sister airport, ADHD, is slightly more mature.

User avatar
leela
Stew Ingredient
Posts: 30182
Joined: Sun Dec 23, 2012 3:46 pm

Re: Ethiopian Airlines

Post by leela » Tue Aug 07, 2018 3:07 pm

Chip_Oatley wrote:Its sister airport, ADHD, is slightly more mature.
Ha!
But more hyperactive.
Pass the wine...

User avatar
leela
Stew Ingredient
Posts: 30182
Joined: Sun Dec 23, 2012 3:46 pm

Re: Ethiopian Airlines

Post by leela » Tue Aug 07, 2018 9:26 pm

Heh. I posted on the TT and TA to ask about the little bit of new terminal that's apparently just been opened. I mentioned the awful reviews, and got knee jerk defensiveness from (presumably Ethiopian) posters. One of them seems to think it's no worse than Heathrow.
Pass the wine...

polardude1
Stew Ingredient
Posts: 59825
Joined: Wed Jan 11, 2006 1:30 pm

Re: Ethiopian Airlines

Post by polardude1 » Wed Aug 08, 2018 12:21 pm

You're transiting there , not moving in
DCComic "3000 dead Americans is slightly less than fuck all",

User avatar
leela
Stew Ingredient
Posts: 30182
Joined: Sun Dec 23, 2012 3:46 pm

Re: Ethiopian Airlines

Post by leela » Wed Aug 08, 2018 1:33 pm

We came here from a travel site. Having a whinge about a six hour layover in a (possibly) manky and overcrowded airport that might well lose my luggage, is allowed.
Pass the wine...

User avatar
GLimpet
Stew Ingredient
Posts: 31120
Joined: Tue May 27, 2014 8:40 pm

Re: Ethiopian Airlines

Post by GLimpet » Thu Aug 09, 2018 1:53 pm

When completed the Addis Ababa Bole International Airport passenger terminal would have a capacity to handle 25 million passengers per annum. The new terminal will have a vast commercial area for duty free shops, restaurants and cafes. It will have two escalators and eight elevators which can shuttle 218 passengers at a time. The terminal will have three levels-access way, arrival and departure levels. It will be connected with the domestic terminal allowing passengers coming from international flights to transfer to domestic flights.
https://www.thereporterethiopia.com/art ... -next-week

User avatar
leela
Stew Ingredient
Posts: 30182
Joined: Sun Dec 23, 2012 3:46 pm

Re: Ethiopian Airlines

Post by leela » Thu Aug 09, 2018 2:18 pm

Yep. They've only opened one small part of it though, and I've not managed to find out exactly what that wing houses. Apart from the VIP facilities.
Pass the wine...

User avatar
leela
Stew Ingredient
Posts: 30182
Joined: Sun Dec 23, 2012 3:46 pm

Re: Ethiopian Airlines

Post by leela » Mon Sep 03, 2018 2:41 pm

Update: the flights were fine. I'd happily fly with them again, based on my outward journey.
But Addis airport really was grim. I transited at their busiest time, and it was chaotic. And I forgot the advice I was given to use the toilet on the plane shortly before landing. I have never seen such a queue for toilets in my life. And yes, there really are only two in the terminal.
The place is a building site. Hopefully when it's finished it will be a lot better.
Pass the wine...

User avatar
ManchVegas
Stew Ingredient
Posts: 9051
Joined: Sun Dec 30, 2012 6:41 am

Re: Ethiopian Airlines

Post by ManchVegas » Tue Sep 04, 2018 4:11 am

Interesting Leela. Was the crew Ethiopian? As mentioned before I've heard a lot of the African airlines are really just European in disguise.
Ritalin Brightens Your Day!

User avatar
GLimpet
Stew Ingredient
Posts: 31120
Joined: Tue May 27, 2014 8:40 pm

Re: Ethiopian Airlines

Post by GLimpet » Tue Sep 04, 2018 3:23 pm

Air Gabon had Gabonese crew.

"Welcome aboard zis Air Gabon Fuck-Air 100"

Image

Chip_Oatley
Stew Ingredient
Posts: 28815
Joined: Sat May 17, 2008 5:39 pm

Re: Ethiopian Airlines

Post by Chip_Oatley » Tue Sep 04, 2018 5:30 pm

ManchVegas wrote:
Tue Sep 04, 2018 4:11 am
Interesting Leela. Was the crew Ethiopian? As mentioned before I've heard a lot of the African airlines are really just European in disguise.
Yes, Ethiopian crew.

User avatar
ManchVegas
Stew Ingredient
Posts: 9051
Joined: Sun Dec 30, 2012 6:41 am

Re: Ethiopian Airlines

Post by ManchVegas » Tue Sep 04, 2018 6:03 pm

Holy crap. What a shit show Air Gabon must have been.

Oddly enough. I flew Air Koryo. The North Korean airline and it was perfectly fine. It's the only one star airline on Skytrax but they were fine. It was a spanking new jet from Beijing to Pyongyang. Russian made of course. Full hot meal. Matt can attest to this. And it's only a 90 minute flight!

The return was sketchy. I had to do a plane change in Shenyang. It was an old Tupolov that creaked and rattled upon landing. And I got the infamous "Air Koryo Burger" so nasty. Google it.

Having said that. It wasn't really bad at all. Better than most US carriers I'm sad to say.
Ritalin Brightens Your Day!

User avatar
leela
Stew Ingredient
Posts: 30182
Joined: Sun Dec 23, 2012 3:46 pm

Re: Ethiopian Airlines

Post by leela » Wed Sep 05, 2018 7:25 am

I didn't see the flight crew, but certainly the captain sounded local.
Pass the wine...

User avatar
ManchVegas
Stew Ingredient
Posts: 9051
Joined: Sun Dec 30, 2012 6:41 am

Re: Ethiopian Airlines

Post by ManchVegas » Wed Sep 05, 2018 7:29 am

You must have seen the flight attendants?

What was the meal service like?
Ritalin Brightens Your Day!

User avatar
leela
Stew Ingredient
Posts: 30182
Joined: Sun Dec 23, 2012 3:46 pm

Re: Ethiopian Airlines

Post by leela » Wed Sep 05, 2018 9:57 am

Flight attendants were Ethiopian. Food was okay. The usual western stuff on both legs out here.
Pass the wine...

User avatar
ManchVegas
Stew Ingredient
Posts: 9051
Joined: Sun Dec 30, 2012 6:41 am

Re: Ethiopian Airlines

Post by ManchVegas » Thu Sep 06, 2018 2:48 am

That's kind of shame that they didn't do a local food option. On American Airlines to China they offered a choice of two. One Chinese and one US.
Ritalin Brightens Your Day!

User avatar
leela
Stew Ingredient
Posts: 30182
Joined: Sun Dec 23, 2012 3:46 pm

Re: Ethiopian Airlines

Post by leela » Sat Sep 15, 2018 9:03 am

Okay. Well unlike the layover on the way, last night's was much better. The terminal we were delivered to was (after a fashion) landside, there was a cafe and some shops, and it was a quieter time of day. I managed to find myself one of the full length lounger type chairs, and the Wi-Fi was working. So not too bad at all. And I have to say that the boarding organization for the A350 was probably the best I've experienced in a long time. Unlike the boarding going out on the 737.

With any luck, when the extension is finished, it might be a reliably okay hub.
Pass the wine...

User avatar
DCComic
Stew Ingredient
Posts: 16468
Joined: Thu Aug 18, 2016 1:42 pm

Re: Ethiopian Airlines

Post by DCComic » Sat Sep 15, 2018 11:35 am

Hang on - you were in a different terminal with nowhere to get food and drink on the way out?
פולאר הוא שקרן - I want my fucking money back - The only reason you continue to participate is because you hate me personally.

If you've got a blacklist I want to be on it.

https://maxkimberstudio.co.uk

User avatar
leela
Stew Ingredient
Posts: 30182
Joined: Sun Dec 23, 2012 3:46 pm

Re: Ethiopian Airlines

Post by leela » Sat Sep 15, 2018 1:34 pm

DCComic wrote:
Sat Sep 15, 2018 11:35 am
Hang on - you were in a different terminal with nowhere to get food and drink on the way out?
Yep. During transit on the way out, to get to the food and drink area, I'd have had to go out through security and back in again.

It's a ridiculousness that's mentioned in many of the reviews of the airport. You don't go through security until you get to the gates. Last night I wondered why we were being called to the gate an hour and 45 minutes before the flight. After queuing for half an hour to go through security, I realised why. And once you've gone through, that's nothing.
Pass the wine...

User avatar
DCComic
Stew Ingredient
Posts: 16468
Joined: Thu Aug 18, 2016 1:42 pm

Re: Ethiopian Airlines

Post by DCComic » Sat Sep 15, 2018 1:43 pm

That's very different from when we did the trip. There was a huge modern hall with seats, cafes and shops. Not upmarket, but perfectly fine.
פולאר הוא שקרן - I want my fucking money back - The only reason you continue to participate is because you hate me personally.

If you've got a blacklist I want to be on it.

https://maxkimberstudio.co.uk

User avatar
leela
Stew Ingredient
Posts: 30182
Joined: Sun Dec 23, 2012 3:46 pm

Re: Ethiopian Airlines

Post by leela » Sat Sep 15, 2018 4:28 pm

That'll be the one I spent six hours in last night. But on the way, as we got off the plane we were asked our final destination by a woman blocking the corridor, and directed to a long thin hall of gates. Which was absolutely heaving and with the record breaking toilet queue. And no facilities whatsoever beyond that.
Pass the wine...

User avatar
DCComic
Stew Ingredient
Posts: 16468
Joined: Thu Aug 18, 2016 1:42 pm

Re: Ethiopian Airlines

Post by DCComic » Sat Sep 15, 2018 6:01 pm

Would you use that route again? We've half a plan to go for Christmas.
פולאר הוא שקרן - I want my fucking money back - The only reason you continue to participate is because you hate me personally.

If you've got a blacklist I want to be on it.

https://maxkimberstudio.co.uk

User avatar
leela
Stew Ingredient
Posts: 30182
Joined: Sun Dec 23, 2012 3:46 pm

Re: Ethiopian Airlines

Post by leela » Sun Sep 16, 2018 8:03 am

Depends on the price DCC. It was very much cheaper than the alternatives this year. The flights themselves were fine, but my previous trips there transited in Johannesburg, which was very much more comfortable.

You need to have your wits about you though, on that outward transit. I was watching the board for boarding to Lilongwe. But it turned out that my flight went to Blantyre after Lilongwe, and the board only showed Blantyre as the destination for my flight. My fault for looking out for the destination rather than the flight number, but I ended up having to run to the other end of the airport as I'd been looking at the wrong Lilongwe flight on the board. I found out later that I was far from the only person caught out by that.
Pass the wine...

User avatar
GLimpet
Stew Ingredient
Posts: 31120
Joined: Tue May 27, 2014 8:40 pm

Re: Ethiopian Airlines

Post by GLimpet » Sun Sep 16, 2018 9:36 am

Our West African guys occasionally use Moroccan airline via Casablanca. Does that have East Africa connections?

User avatar
leela
Stew Ingredient
Posts: 30182
Joined: Sun Dec 23, 2012 3:46 pm

Re: Ethiopian Airlines

Post by leela » Sun Sep 16, 2018 11:09 am

GLimpet wrote:
Sun Sep 16, 2018 9:36 am
Our West African guys occasionally use Moroccan airline via Casablanca. Does that have East Africa connections?
Their booking page doesn't allow me to put Lilongwe in, so it seems they don't go to Malawi.
Pass the wine...

User avatar
GLimpet
Stew Ingredient
Posts: 31120
Joined: Tue May 27, 2014 8:40 pm

Re: Ethiopian Airlines

Post by GLimpet » Thu Sep 20, 2018 5:01 pm

One of several toilets after gate security in ADD:

Image

Those are just portacabin-a-loos but downstairs there were several built-in toilets and I didn't see long queues at the women's.

And my gate was right next to the Lilongwe gate.

User avatar
GLimpet
Stew Ingredient
Posts: 31120
Joined: Tue May 27, 2014 8:40 pm

Re: Ethiopian Airlines

Post by GLimpet » Thu Sep 20, 2018 5:16 pm

Upstairs before gate security looks OK too. There was a lively-looking bar just around the corner.

Image

User avatar
GLimpet
Stew Ingredient
Posts: 31120
Joined: Tue May 27, 2014 8:40 pm

Re: Ethiopian Airlines

Post by GLimpet » Thu Sep 20, 2018 5:22 pm

As you Amharic readers can tell, ET861 is my flight to Brazzaville and Pointe-Noire.

Image

User avatar
GLimpet
Stew Ingredient
Posts: 31120
Joined: Tue May 27, 2014 8:40 pm

Re: Ethiopian Airlines

Post by GLimpet » Thu Sep 20, 2018 5:25 pm

Having a row to myself did mean I got some good sleep on the plane.

Image

Post Reply