Nationwide Airlines Passenger Reviews and Nationwide Airlines Customer Trip Reports
Nationwide Airlines review by Kelvin Wright
5 April 2008 Customer Trip Rating :
Arrived from Dubai to JNB, and finally got to the Nationwide check-in desk, to
have them tell us they had cancelled our flight to Durban. We had not been told
about the cancelled flight (they had my email address - I had booked 4 months in
advance). The staff at the Nationwide desk were terrible. Nobody would speak to
us, they buried their heads behind their computer screens. I asked for some
options and was answered in silence. They did not offer a refund and simply said
that the next flight we could catch would be the next day! Only once my children
started crying did some form of human decency appear and they offered to store
our luggage until the next day.
Nationwide Airlines review by David Ellis
5 February 2008 Customer Trip Rating :
LGW-JNB-CPT return business class. LGW check-in a bit perfunctory with unsmiling
staff. Take-off delayed by 30 mins and then had to return to LGW once airborne
because of locking pin left in landing gear by ground staff, so total delay of 2
hrs 30 mins. B767 showing its age (eg ashtrays in the toilets and slot for
disposing razor blades). Service onboard friendly and professional, seats
average (ie old-style business class) and food reasonable. IFE basic (screen at
front of cabin), although small video walkmens were available with a small
number of films. Immigration and baggage collection at JNB crowded and chaotic
with no information given for transit passengers. Eventually found domestic
terminal and Nationwide check-in, but staff seemed poorly informed about the
delayed flight. Fortunately we'd been booked onto the next flight, but others
weren't so lucky. Service in the 8-seat section of the 727 for JNB-CPT
excellent. Immigration and baggage reclaim at CPT fast. Return flight less
eventful. Check-in at CPT friendly and efficient. Baggage checked through for
CPT-LGW and it arrived successfully despite CPT-JNB flight being delayed by an
hour. Transit from domestic to international terminals at JNB incredibly
confusing because of all the building work and poor signs. FAs on JNB-LGW
excellent, with a good mix of friendliness and professionalism. Food as on
outbound. Overall, although a basic business class service, FAs make up for most
of the shortcomings and one ends up with a good impression of Nationwide. And at
business class fares 50% of other carriers, it is good value.
Nationwide Airlines review by S Gow
17 January 2008 Customer Trip Rating :
CPT-JNB. Flight on time and cabin crew friendly and professional. Hot bacon roll
a bit expensive but tasty. My only complaint was their lack of proactive
notification of a pre-booked flight to different times. Their website showed the
booked flight was no longer operating, so I called reservations and was only
then advised of a rebooking to a different flight. Despite that, the res- lady
was also friendly and helpful. And that's the strong point of this airline -
their staff are good.
Nationwide Airlines review by Lindsey Nutbeen
17 January 2008 Customer Trip Rating :
Very disappointed. LGW-JNB, JNB-CPT in December, apart from overbooking of seats
in Joburg ok. Return a nightmare, our flight to JNB was cancelled without any
communication therefore jeopardising our return flight to Gatwick. Had to book
with SAA, only tickets left business class. Have sent an email to Nationwide
Airlines in Cape Town (customer services manager) who has not had the courtesy
to reply. Very angry. Sad as the people who work on ground level were very
helpful as were the stewards
Nationwide Airlines review by Ros Dean
17 January 2008 Customer Trip Rating :
LGW to Johannesburg return. FA's friendly and efficient and food really good.
After we had taken off we were offered pre dinner drinks followed by our
starters. We had a choice of meals which were lovely. After our main meal we had
a choice of trifle, cheesecake or cheese with fruit and biscuits which were
served from the sweet trolley. (in economy class). Good value for money, would
Nationwide Airlines review by K Nolan
9 January 2008 Customer Trip Rating :
JNB-CPT return just after New Year's. Was somewhat apprehensive after November
shutdown, but flights were fine. Crew professional and friendly, flights on-time
and everything worked as it should. Planes do seem ancient (737-200s), but would
fly with Nationwide again.
Nationwide Airlines review by John Madew
4 December 2007 Customer Trip Rating : n/a
First flight was Johannesburg to Livingstone in Zambia. Plane very old, but crew
friendly. Bags were lost, this was sadly predictable given at check in we were
told there were not enough labels with the correct flight number so yellow
sticker was used instead, clearly with not the intended effect. Bag arrived 30
minutes later on next and only other flight. Returning flight from Livingstone
was cancelled due to Nationwide flight licence being suspended. Managed to get
on only other alternate flight with slight assistance of Nationwide staff, most
did not get this lucky! Onward flight froM JNB to CPT also cancelled and
Nationwide stafff did nothing to rebook, usual airline fiasco. Journey ended up
taking 17 hours. Do not use Nationwide if there is another alternative. It is
not good enough that they could not keep their flying licences up to date.
Nationwide Airlines review by M Ferguson
1 November 2007 Customer Trip Rating :
JNB-LGW. Good service and good food despite full plane. Entertainment out of
date but not important on overnight flight. This airline gives the impression
that it is trying. Seats are a bit basic but 2x3x2 format makes up for this.
Nationwide Airlines review by Ann Langton
26 October 2007 Customer Trip Rating :
Gatwick to JNB economy. Reasonable leg room, more than other airlines I have
travelled. The food was very good, hostesses very pleasant. Nightime flight so
not interested in the in-flight entertainment which was a bit out of date. I
would certainly fly with them again. I only wish I had known we could have
pre-booked our seats, but I will know next time.
Nationwide Airlines review by Brian Botha
28 August 2007 Customer Trip Rating :
I did not realise that Nationwide airlines (domestic) had become like a low cost
carrier with high prices. Flew from Durban to Joburg return. I was surprised to
find that they only have food & drink for sale at very expensive prices. The
plane looked old and the seats are looking pretty worn especially the 737-500
which unlike the 737-200 which has leather seats. flight attendants were not
very friendly either.
Nationwide Airlines review by Ian Aitchison
31 July 2007 Customer Trip Rating :
LGW-JNB return. Business class. Lounge at LGW a bit limited but fine for an hour
before the evening departure. Boarding swift and pre flight drinks were served
without delay. Although the cabin is "old style" I found it comfortable. There
is an obvious lack of gadgets that you get in more up to date cabins but apart
from limited IFE, I found the total experience very good. The food was fine -
and yes the trifle was worth it on its own merits lone. The FA's were very
friendly and helpfull. After the meal the lights were dimmed and I managed to
get 7 hours sleep - the most I have ever achieved on any flight so something
must have been right. Arrival at JNB on time and only a minor delay waiting for
a bus was the negative part of the experience. Return leg a daytime flight when
better IFE would be appreciated but nevertheless 3 films helped pass the time.
When you consider the price this has to be an unbeatable combination. The
767-300 was a little bit tired but staff made up for it and more.
Nationwide Airlines review by Paul Foulkes
13 July 2007 Customer Trip Rating :
JNB-LGW business class. The airline that style forgot. It really was a throwback
to the 1970s. Nylon uniforms, movies on a single screen after trifle from the
bowl. That said, the staff onboard were very good, and the price makes
everything else forgivable. Nothing like a flat bed but still comfortable.
Nationwide Airlines review by Lesley Clements
6 July 2007 Customer Trip Rating :
London to Johannesburg. I was very impressed with the service onboard, crew very
polite and friendly and nothing too much trouble. They served each course of the
meal to you separately. They do not have seat back Tv's and choice of films were
old, but on a night flight it really didn't worry me and I was able to sleep. I
found them a very good airline and one of the better ones I have flown with
Nationwide Airlines review by Julia Taylor
25 June 2007 Customer Trip Rating :
LGW-JNB with a connection to CPT and return. LGW-JNB was an older aircraft and
inflight entertainment was rather old. The entertainment doesnt start until the
meals have been started and is on a big screen at the front of the cabin - this
wasnt a problem for me as I slept but not great for people travelling with kids.
The food was fine, nothing special but more than edible - it was served by
course which was rather different! Desserts are served in big bowls and you
choose what you want - trifle, chocolate cake or cheese and biscuits. Connection
on to CPT was fine - though JNB is having some works done at the moment so ask
for directions to the domestic terminal. The domestic flight had drinks and food
which were for sale - reasonably priced. Overall they are a good airline with
good service but the planes are older. I'd certainly fly with them again!
Nationwide Airlines review by Francois Koenig
5 June 2007 Customer Trip Rating : n/a
CPT-DUR return. Drastic change to its inflight service with the new BOB (Buy on
Board service). Whilst its domestic fares remain relatively competitive ,
Nationwide has gone the LCC route offering a Business Class cabin (a sort of
semi "full service / semi LCC" airline). Food ran out of choice by the time they
reached my row (6th row of Y Class). Service was the slowest I have ever
encountered on any flight. The cabin crew with their handheld cash-registers
battled labouriously through the service, serving and collecting monies. Only
once round the cabin on a 2hr flight. Kulula.com and 1Time Airlines have a far
better system - 1 crew member dishes out the saleable goods whilst another
collects the bucks behind. At this stage, SAA remains the only full service
airline, with fares matching all the other LCC carriers if purchasing a seat in
advance. The change in service levels is highly noticeable, as Nationwide was
undoubtedly the best domestic carrier in terms of service.
Nationwide Airlines review by Roy Weaver
20 March 2007 Customer Trip Rating : n/a
Used Nationwide twice now from Gatwick to Johannesburg. Excellent service with
well trained staff, on time, good food and attentive throughout a night flight.
It is worth flying Nationwide just for the trifle! The price very low for such
Nationwide Airlines review - by Jim Leadbetter
26 February 2007
For the less expensive price than the major airlines, Nationwide business class
is just about acceptable. The staff are first class. The food is a very cheap
economy class standard, poor presentation and tasteless. The seating is
comfortable. 5 out of 10.
Nationwide Airlines review - by P Barker
19 February 2007
We recently flew to Johannesburg and back from London Gatwick with Nationwide.
We flew out economy and could not fault service and quality of accommodation. On
the return leg we flew Business Class and I must express thanks for the
wonderful attention and service provided by the hostesses. The food was
excellent and seating comfortable.
Nationwide Airlines review - by Leonard Beaven
9 February 2007
Business class LGW-CPT via JNB return. Had prebooked seats out and home. Seating
good, not flat but good enough for prices charged. Service on board good.
Inflight food basic and just about ok. I could make do with sandwiches and
drinks if that were an option. All flight and ground staff polite and helpful.
The shared airport lounges are a bit small and were crowded on a couple of
occasions. Overall, this airline gives value for money and I would use them
Nationwide Airlines review - by Geoff Cornwall
7 December 2006
Gatwick-JNB-George return with Nationwide. Unfortunately whilst in SA our return
tickets were damaged in a flood. Fearing the worst I rang Nationwide who could
not have been more helpful. Especially the chap I spoke to in London and at
George. Thank you very much.
Nationwide Airlines review - by John Bryant
22 September 2006
Gatwick-Johannesburg-Livingstone return. We flew business class in both
directions and service, food and comfort was excellent. Not quite matching
Malaysian or Emirates but certainly value for money. All flights on time.
Gatwick check in is unattractively located but was efficient and
luggage/boarding passes were through to final destination. On the return from
Livingstone the luggage was checked through to Gatwick but needed boarding pass
at Johannesburg for London flight and had to wait for the desk to open in the
flight connection area. I felt that let down the otherwise excellent business
class experience. Would certainly use the airline again
Nationwide Airlines review - by Frank Browett
28 August 2006
Gatwick to Jo'burg and on to Cape Town return. We upgraded to business class and
the legroom and service were very good on the outward flight. On the return
flight from Cape Town, my seat had a broken back which the mechanic could not
fix. The aircraft must have flown in like this, but nothing had been said about
it. The onward flight to Gatwick was again very good apart from the noise made
by the air conditioning. I would travel by Nationwide again.
Nationwide Airlines review - by Francois Koenig
12 August 2006
CPT-JNB-KMIA. Swift check-in, full flt to JNB, pleasant crew & nice inflight
service (Coffee, sandwich + bar service). Crew change in JNB, 40mins turnaround
with joining passengers & short flight 35mins to Kruger Mpumulanga Airport.
Fruit juice, sandwich-asked for wine & stewardess very obliging. The airport
resembles a 5-star game lodge in the bush - modern ethnic African in design.
KMIA-JNB-CPT. Again, short hop to JNB with sandwich & fruit juice. Full flight
to JNB, sandwich & bar / Coffee. Crew pleasant & accommodating.
Nationwide Airlines review - by David Boorman
24 July 2006
Gatwick-Jburg-Livingstone return June 2006 Upgraded to "deluxe economy class" at
an incredibly cheap cost. The most comfortable flight my wife and I have had.
Excellent cabin service. Would recommend.
Nationwide Airlines review - by Trevor Bock
5 July 2006
JNB-Durban return. Excellent cabin service. Although the aircraft may be a
little older they are in immaculate condition. Service is up there with the
best. They can be let down by the airport infrastructure in JHB at times.
Nationwide Airlines review - by Gerry Froggatt
18 April 2006
Gatwick-Johannesburg-Livingstone return. Excellent service for the low cost of
the flight. On time for most of the flights. transfer at J'Burg a little tardy.
Could have given us a straight through ticket instead of having to check-in
again at J'Burg. Only a sandwich on the L'stone to J'Burg flight but a hot meal
and breakfast on other flights. Food not bad for economy. Would fly with them
Airlines review - by Michael R Preston
7 October 2005
JNB CPT 21SEP Y class. I booked on their website on the same day, ZAR1161 for a
flight at about 1530. SAA's price was over R2400 and Kulula were full and could
offer nothing. As I got to the airport early they put me on standby at no extra
charge for the earlier flight, as it happened I didn't get on. The flight to CPT
was of the normal high Nationwide standard. Despite being busy, boarding was
completed efficiently and although we pushed back a few minutes late, the time
was made up en route. The usual friendly informal but professional service, and
a hot meal and drinks were provided. Barely time to lean back before Tafelberg
was off our wing tip as we approached the airfield after another great flight.
Airlines review - by Christian Farias
29 August 2005
Superb staff, short-haul inflight services, nice lounges, a surprising treat to
have a private car service for business class passengers transfering from remote
stands to the terminal - in short, fly Nationwide!
Airlines review - by R Hay
17 August 2005
Durban/JHB/Gatwick. Check-in in Durban quick. Flight very pleasant experience.
Onboard staff supportive and helpful, especially with my 3 accompanying minors.
Food excellent and I was a satisfied customer until I had to change my return
date. The Nationwide phone number in the UK I was advised to call regarding
changes, proved to be challenging - with inconsistent advice, failing to return
my calls as promised, blamed the South African side for not responding to their
emails - eventually I managed to change the date, through an agent at check- in,
moments before I was expected to depart. Extremely poor and stressful and my
memorable onboard flight experience evaporated.
Airlines review - by Des Titherington
1 July 2005
I recently flew return Gatwick -J'burg and return and the service was excellent,
food better than ordinary airline fare and the cabin staff very friendly.
Airlines review - by R Collins
17 May 2005
Flew round trip from JNB to Livingstone economy as part of a BA trip ex-
Heathrow. The JNB to Livingstone flight was one of the best we have ever
experienced on any route. The staff were professional, but friendly, the food
and service of excellent quality, and the view of the falls was terrific. The
return was slightly more hurried, but to be fair, the flight was much busier.
They also made the best announcements from the flight deck, nice and clear to
listen to. I agree about the 'real' cutlery, and the fabulous inflight magazine
which was a treat. Why did no one tell us that Nationwide fly Gatwick to J'burg?
We were routed BA from Heathrow, which is much less convenient for us - and
doubtless much more expensive. We shall look out for Nationwide in future.
Airlines review - by G Clayton
13 April 2005
Nationwide Economy Plus from JNB to London Gatwick. I was pleased when I saw the
size of the seats and the leg room. Format seating 2:2:2 with a double arm rest
in between. At 6ft even when you recline the seat you can just hook your toes on
the base of the seat in front of you, and that is off the foot rest that comes
out the base of the seat. The headrest was also adjustable. Drinks are served at
each passing, but they serve drinks first, then come round with your food tray
(this is the same in the normal economy - as the only difference between the 2
is the seats and luggage allowance). This was well presented and had a large
Greek salad with lots of olives and feta. On the next passing they serve the
main course (based on taste I would be very happy to have been served that in a
restaurant). Dessert is served after that with a desert trolly. Entertainment,
there is music etc at your control but movies are only shown on screens at the
front of each section
Airlines review - by Bill Flannigan
21 February 2005
Johannesburg to Livingston return economy. Flight out was great. Good service
and a view of the falls as we were landing. However on the way back we were
stuck in the last row of their 737. This row has several inches less space than
all the other rows, both in width and leg row. I am not particularly large
(1.8M, 90kg), but I couldn't even get the tray table down for my meal. Have been
in holiday charter flights with more room. Complained via an inflight form, but
one month later have not even had the courtesy of a reply. My advice would be,
on booking insist that you are not seated in the last row!
Airlines review - by John Petersen
25 January 2005
Johannesburg to Livingstone, Zambia roundtrip in July 2004. I started the trip
in Miami and connected in London on Virgin. Nationwide Airlines is excellent. I
was quite surprised by the new equipment and personnel. Of important interest
for travellers from USA/Europe, this is part of the Virgin flight network. They
will hold the plane on the ground in Johannesburg to wait for the London Virgin
flight but make sure that they know you are connecting. We were late and they
escorted these passengers personally to the Nationwide flight. I wish that
all US flights operated this well. A writer mentioned the good coffee. Quite a
nice change from the bad instant coffee in Virgin Upper Class.
Airlines review - by Carol Richardson
4 January 2005
We have just arrived back in UK having spent 3 weeks in South Africa and Zambia.
We had a total of seven flights with Nationwide over this holiday. The service
both on the ground and in the air was excellent. Of the seven flights only two
were slightly late leaving and these "caught up" most of the delay before
landing. We would recommend this airline for its service and value (we flew
executive economy for all legs). The only niggle was the re-confirming of the
onward flights. Why the need to re-confirm? - I am not sure.
Airlines review - by Francois Koenig
20 December 2004
Durban to Cape Town my wife & I flew Nationwide Airlines in economy on a
B737-200. Cabin comfortable & clean - emergency demonstration conducted
physically by cabin crew & very professionally done, with the Purser introducing
each crew member individually. The best domestic inflight service. Unlimited
free alcoholic beverages, once again 3x beverage services as per SAA with a full
hot lunch (Cajun chicken, basmati rice, roast vegetables, side salad, bread
roll, the best chocolate mousse ever!! cheese & biscuits T/C in huge mugs).
Cabin crew reflective of the "new" South Africa, with inflight announcements
made in 4 languages (English, Afrikaans, Zulu & Xhosa).
Airlines review - by Jenny Keyte
5 December 2004
I flew from SA to Gatwick on Nationwide recently, and, probably because I'm a
large lady, found the economy seats very distinctly uncomfortable seeing as I
had been told by the staff in Johannesburg that there was more room (I guess
they meant leg room - but I have no problem with leg room). I felt distinctly
embarrassed as the cabin crew tried their hardest to have the food tray out so
that I could eat - consequently I didn't eat - I think I should be recompensed
for this! I also tried to upgrade to executive economy for my return journey, to
be told that I would need to pay an addition 389GBP because the ticket I had
purchased could not be upgraded one way - so then I would have had to bear the
indignity of the outward flight - and pay for it - as I MAY be more comfortable
for the homeward flight. I do not regard this as very good service. Also, I
found the person on the phone in the UK distinctly disinterested in helping and
almost rude. I have flown many airlines in the last few years and find this
treat absolutely awful.
Airlines review - by P Ash
1 November 2004
Flew Nationwide JNB-CPT some weeks ago. Thoroughly impressed with the service at
their sales office at JNB - quick smart, attentive and unflustered, as well as
getting me cheap ticket (R781, one way). The flight was a treat too - friendly
attendants, good meal, and plenty of legroom. A great airline.
Airlines review - by Jennifer Bentley
2 September 2004
Flew JNB - CPT in Aug 2004, economy class. Agree with other comments - a
friendly airline with proper cutlery and (best of all) a decent sized cup!
Trouble free check in, baggage reclaim and inflight service.
Airlines review - by D Ulyate
5 July 2004
CPT-JNB, Economy Class. I flew this route in April in their 727. FA's were
friendly, and the food was good considering the class. And the landing was one
of the smoother ones I have experienced. I will be flying them again for sure!
Airlines review - by Chris Ives
13 February 2004
I have flown several times with Nationwide from Jo'burg to Livingstone, and I
think they are a fantastic airline! The service is great, the check in is great,
and pilots give you a great view of Vic Falls on the way over! In fact, I'm
flying with them from Gatwick tonight!
Airlines review - by Joe Winson
12 February 2004
I bought a return ticket from Johannesburg to Durban, whilst in London, and
because they were suggested to me by the Virgin sales staff. I was quoted a
figure and gave my credit card details to the Nationwide staff so as to purchase
the ticket. My first complaint is that once I ended up at their counter in
Johannesburg, the desk attendant told me that I hadnt paid enough and had to pay
more. I was horrified and after a hour and a half of arguing, they issued me
with a return ticket to Durban. My second complaint is this. The Jo'burg / Durbs
flight is around 55 minutes, and whilst on the flight, the head attendant made a
"welcome "announcement and during the announcement she stated that they had a
special arrangement with Tempest car hire at special rates and if we were
interested, to talk to one of the hostesses. As I wanted to hire a car I asked
the nearest hostess and was told that as they were serving drinks / food they
couldn't help me immediately, but if I produced my boarding card to the Tempest
desk, the offer would still be valid. Once on the ground, I went to the Tempest
desk and was promptly told that to qualify for the deal, I needed to have made
the request whilst still in the air and refused to help me. To make matters
worse, they had booked a car for one of the other passengers on the same flight.
This cost me time and money.
Airlines review - by Craig Thomas
23 December 2003
I second the opinion of Peter Garner - I travelled from Cape Town to
Johannesburg after flying in from London on Virgin Atlantic. What a treat !
Cabin crew were warm and hospitable, flight left early. Meal service was superb
- the breakfast served on the 2 hour flight to Johannesburg beat the socks off
the excuse for a breakfast served on Virgin's 12-hour long haul into Cape Town.
Coffee is served in full-size plastic mugs and the crew made three drink rounds
during the flight. Nationwide's new inflight magazine is superb - high quality
and excellent reading. I look forward to travelling on their new long haul
service from Johannesburg to Gatwick.
Airlines review - by James Douglas
17 December 2003
Johannesburg to Livingstone, Zambia in Economy. Quick check-in, friendly staff
and an excellent hot meal, especially considering it was only a 90 minute
Airlines review - by Peter Garner
15 December 2003
Cape Town to Johannesburg, Thrift Class. What a nice airline ! This 2 hour
internal flight was on a fully-occupied 737. We took off on time and drinks and
meals were handed out shortly after take off. I had not expected a meal on such
a short flight but it was very welcome. The food was very good quality, and
served with real metal cutlery. The clear-up rate was also very good and our
tables were cleared quickly. The staff were friendly and attentive and helped
make the flight a good experience even in the "thrift class" section. During the
flight I learned that Nationwide also fly long-haul from Gatwick. My only regret
they don't fly from Heathrow, but if the quality on the long-haul is as good it would be worth
considering flying from Gatwick instead.
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