Flight-Report

Review of TAAG Angola Airlines flight Luanda Cape Town in Economy

Flight DT579
Class Economy
Seat 22A
Aircraft Boeing 777-300ER
Flight time 04:50
Take-off 01 Nov 17, 08:20
Arrival at 01 Nov 17, 14:10
DT 5 reviews
Davidu
By 2661
Published on 6th November 2017
After my last flight onboard TAAG's 737-700, I was really curious to see how the long-range 777 aircraft compare. TAAG uses both the 777-200 and -300ER series on both long-haul flights (to Rio de Janeiro, Havana, and Lisbon etc.) as well as some medium haul flight around Africa (primarily Cape Town and Johannesburg). Hope you enjoy this report!

I arrived at Luanda Quatro de Fevereiro at 6:30 with an hour and fifty minutes left to the flight. The airport was actually quite busy with a flight leaving to Maputo, Johannesburg, Windhoek as well as my very own Cape Town flight.

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A pretty busy Luanda airport

Check in was somewhat confusing, the line wasn't moving at all even though all the 7 TAAG stalls were open. I'm not sure why but I got waved to a lady in a TAAG uniform who was taking care of one of the stalls. She was very polite and very effective. I was out of the check in hall in less than two minutes. These are the kind of airline workers you want to come across.

Taking photos throughout security and passport control is strictly forbidden. Basically, if you do it you will get yelled at and asked to put your phone away. I'm not sure what they're trying to protect the passengers from but sure I guess whatever floats their boat. I finally got through this part of the airport and I could finally use the huge glass windows that Luanda offers to check out some of the aircraft in the tarmac.

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TAAG 777-300ER arriving from Lisbon

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TAP A340-300 After arriving from lisbon

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Some more TAAG aircraft in Luanda

TAP is planning to retire their a340's throughout 2017 to 2019. I'm not surprised as all 4 aircraft of this type in TAP's fleet were delivered in the mid 90's. I won't lie I'll be sad to see them go even though that they'll be replaced by a330NEO aircraft which are to fly to Luanda too. Can't wait!

Boarding was called at 8:10, I was sure that we would leave on time since the boarding started so late. We gathered around gate 4 and were bussed to the aircraft.

After stepping outside of the bus the sheer size of the 777 amazed me, this was probably aggravated by the fact that we boarded by stairs. There was a Lufthansa a330-300 parked a few stands away and it seemed small in comparison to my 777.

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The huge GE90 engines of my 777

Information about the flight

Departure Luanda (FNLU)

Destination Cape Twon (FACT)

Aircraft D2-TEG (A Boeing 777-300ER delivered to TAAG in 2011, named Sagrada Esperança (Sacred Hope) aged 6.5 years at the time of the flight.)

Flight time (actual) 3 Hours 35 Minutes

I was on the last bus to get to the aircraft so I walked into an already pretty full cabin. The first thing I noticed was that the seat finishes (the golden yellow and navy blue) were very similar to the ones on board the 737. Newer 777's in the TAAG fleet get leather seats with black finishes.

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A pretty full cabin

I settled into my seat 22A, a window seat I noticed that the wing was pretty dusty and black. Our neighbour was D2-TEI, one of the newest 777's in the fleet, delivered in June 2016.

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The thing that surprised me most was the amount of legroom on board. It was huge. I could not touch the seat in front of me with my feet and my knees were a good 20 cm from the seat in front of me. I don't fly economy on a most long-haul aircraft but I could imagine surviving a pretty long flight in this seat. Just a fun fact TAAG is the only airline to have switched from a 3-4-3 configuration to a 3-3-3 configuration on the 777. The aisles did seem really wide.

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A blanket and the legroom

We took off after a pretty short takeoff roll, the GE90 engines were very powerful but they weren't loud at all. It was a pretty comfortable take off.

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View of Luanda on takeoff

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Viewafter breaking through the clouds

Right after takeoff, the meal was served. It was a decent breakfast which consisted of scrambled eggs, a sausage, a grilled tomato, a roll, some jam and butter along with drinks which included tea and coffee All in a pretty good meal, as seems to be the norm on TAAG.

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The onboard meal

After the meal was cleared (which took a long time, around an hour, actually) I decided to get some work done. I managed to do some work and decided to call it quits an hour and a half later. At this point, we were flying over Namibia, a place that I'm visiting this Christmas, also on board TAAG.

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View while flying over Namibia

I decided to check out the in-flight entertainment. The selection wasn't amazing so I settled on spectre the newest James Bond movie. It was just as mediocre as I remebered it.

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Classic entertainment controller

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The cabin inflight

I finished the movie with about 45 minutes to go until landing in Cape Town. I decided to pay a visit to the bathroom, this was very uneventful, there were no amenities but the bathroom was pretty clean, at least.

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The bathroom

As I returned to my seat the captain announced that we have just started our descent into Cape Town, strangely even though we were still about 35 minutes out the crew asked us to but our seats upright and to return the headphones issued to us (ha, I had my own the joke is on them) anyways I have a feeling this was way too early for comfort.

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The cabin with mood lighting

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Approaching Cape Town international

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On short Final flaps 30

We landed 5 minutes behind schedule, after a quick taxi to the gate we disembarked the aircraft quickly and efficiently.

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Our neighbour was TC-JOC, a Turkish airlines a330-300

My luggage was already waiting for me once I cleared the passport check. All in all, a very effective flight on board TAAG.
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Verdict

TAAG Angola Airlines

6.8/10
Cabin7.0
Cabin crew6.5
Entertainment/wifi6.5
Meal/catering7.0

Luanda - LAD

4.5/10
Efficiency5.5
Access5.5
Services4.0
Cleanliness3.0

Cape Town - CPT

6.9/10
Efficiency6.5
Access7.5
Services6.5
Cleanliness7.0

Conclusion

This was a perfectly good flight on TAAG. The aircraft interior was pretty nice and seemed to be well maintained. the seats were well padded and the amount of legroom was excellent. The crew was efficient and the meal was good. All in all a perfectly nice experience.

Related

8 Comments

  • Comment 418347 by
    joaointhesky 54 Comments

    TAAG's long-haul service seems pretty consistent and honestly, very nice. Was the ticket price fair?
    Thanks and bye bye!
    João

  • Comment 418349 by
    Razza_Pr 205 Comments

    Greetings, Davidu, and thank you for this FR.

    An exotic airline, TAAG, though not one I'm likely to fly anytime soon unfortunately. Service in Y looks about alright, probably on par with AF/KL/LH medium haul? Should still be an acceptable option for any regional flight, it seems.

    "Just a fun fact TAAG is the only airline to have switched from a 3-4-3 configuration to a 3-3-3 configuration on the 777."
    -They've seen the light! Probably the only airline who will ever do that.

    How are the crews generally like?

    What of the IFE? How does it fare in terms of choices, user-friendliness, and just overall interactivity?

    "strangely even though we were still about 35 minutes out the crew asked us to but our seats upright and to return the headphones issued to us"
    -For what looks like a fully-loaded 777 I think it's only fair that they had to start so early..

    Anyway, thanks again for this FR.

    Cheers!

  • Comment 418395 by
    Shisdu SILVER 651 Comments

    Hi Davidu!

    Very interesting report! I have been considering a trip to Africa for some time, departing from Rio de Janeiro. I see that TAAG flies to Luanda from Rio. Would you recommend Luanda as a place to visit for a couple of days before I continue my trip to Cape Town? Information about Luanda on the Internet is not very encouraging, but based on what I read here, TAAG's Rio > Luanda flight could be a good option to LATAM's Rio > Joahnnesburg.

    Thanks for sharing! ^_^

  • Comment 418443 by
    East African 1463 Comments

    Very nice report again,
    I'm a big fan of all your reports now :)
    A few times this airline and/or aircraft was seen in CPT, thus was wondering how could be the experience - you have given here the perfect answer!
    After checking on TAAG's website, it's interesting to see that their 777s are heavily premium - still load is great!
    Have you already enrolled to their FFP?

    Many thanks for sharing,
    Looking forward to your December travels

    • Comment 418451 by
      Davidu AUTHOR 17 Comments

      Yes, that's absolutely true, their 777 is very premium based. Their frequent flyer program is strange and kind of confusing but I've enrolled now and I'm hoping it will work out for me, but I don't think you'll be able to enroll online, the website NEVER works.

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