Air China

Customer Reviews

3 star Skytrax Rating
Food & Beverages 12345
Inflight Entertainment 12345
Seat Comfort 12345
Staff Service 12345
Value for Money 12345
Customer rating from 543 reviews
4/10
3 star Skytrax Rating
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1/10

"the food was disgusting"

(United States)

Trip Verified | New York to Tokyo via Beijing. I chose to fly Air China to my recent trip to Tokyo and I really regret it. I chose it for the really affordable price and booked it through my chase ultimate rewards, as some others had mentioned it is impossible to check in online therefore although I was able to chose my seats when booking my flight I had a hard time changing it and I wasn't able to choose my meal options. They do feed you a lot on the plane, but the food was disgusting, like even their rice was bad (tasted like paste with a play-doh consistency) - coming from an airline that has "China" in it is shocking since most Asian diets consist of rice. Since I don't eat a lot of meat I asked the flight attendant if she had a vegan or fish option and she said she will check but completely forgot about it and when she came around to ask what everyone wanted to drink I asked her again and she finally went in search of my vegan meal. She came back with it but gave me an attitude saying I should request it ahead of time next time - if your site had given me the option to trust me I would have! The bread isn't fresh and taste stale so I pretty much ate nothing throughout my whole 12 hour flight to Beijing (layover) thankfully my reserve card enabled me to have access to the premium lounges and I chose Air China first class lounge. The food was okay I suppose, there was a good variety of hot food and the staff are attentive at cleaning up the plate and the bathroom is clean, literally I threw a tissue in the garbage can and a cleaning lady went in right after me picked it up and tossed it outside... anyways they have an open bar with limited alcohol, but their noodle station was a big hit and although I had to camp for it got myself a few bowls of these to make up for the terrible flight meal. The recliner seats in the first class lounge is trash, ripped seats and doesn't recline unless you decide to throw all your weight into leaning back then it might budge, the private rooms are the worst! Broken ripped massage chairs with a box of tissue in front I felt like I would catch something just sitting on the chair. The worst part bout this airline was that they damaged my luggage and it's nearly impossible to get through to them at their jfk line or via email. The staff that does answer the phone are rude, I submitted a claim a week ago and finally got a response asking me to send them everything I sent in the first email, like do you not read?
Type Of TravellerSolo Leisure
Cabin FlownEconomy Class
RouteNew York to Tokyo via Beijing
Date FlownNovember 2017
Seat Comfort 12345
Cabin Staff Service 12345
Food & Beverages 12345
Inflight Entertainment 12345
Ground Service 12345
Wifi & Connectivity 12345
Value For Money 12345
no
7/10

"worth a shout if you get a cheap ticket"

(United States)

Trip Verified | Bangkok to Washington-Dulles via Beijing. For the price paid for the ticket, I can't complain. Check-in was 30-45 minutes at BKK and IAD. Staff were friendly and checked my baggage through with no hassles. No bag-drop line for those who check in online at either airport so one has to queue with everyone else in economy. The online check in on their flight didn't work for my return flight to BKK which put me in a middle seat for the Beijing to Bangkok leg. IFE was OK. There were power ports for laptops in economy on Boeing 777-300ER flights. Food was edible. Beer and wine were available. Flight attendants were reasonably friendly and came through every so often with water. 60-80 minutes is a tight connection through T3 in Beijing so if you're on a tight connection, get a Air China sticker from staff and they'll escort you to the front of the transit-security line after your boarding pass is checked. Overall, decent service and worth a shout if you can get a cheap ticket.
AircraftBoeing 777-200 / 777-300ER
Type Of TravellerSolo Leisure
Cabin FlownEconomy Class
RouteBangkok to Washington-Dulles via Beijing
Date FlownNovember 2017
Seat Comfort 12345
Cabin Staff Service 12345
Food & Beverages 12345
Inflight Entertainment 12345
Ground Service 12345
Value For Money 12345
yes
2/10

"Inflight entertainment is awful"

(United States)

Trip Verified | I guess this could be a good introduction to the rest of Chinese culture but wow, this airline is annoying. First the employees wake you up every time drinks or food is offered during the red eye. I was planning to sleep the whole flight and this didn't help. Then they make sure you turn your phone off completely as they don't believe in airplane mode like the rest of the world. I couldn't watch downloaded shows because staff would constantly get onto me about it. Inflight entertainment is awful, almost all of it exclusively in Chinese. Seats are also cramped. One time I also got some extremely disgusting porridge on the flight.
Type Of TravellerBusiness
Cabin FlownEconomy Class
RouteHouston to Guangzhou via Beijing
Date FlownNovember 2017
Seat Comfort 12345
Cabin Staff Service 12345
Food & Beverages 12345
Inflight Entertainment 12345
Ground Service 12345
Value For Money 12345
no
1/10

"have no customer service"

(United States)

Trip Verified | New York to Beijing. Air China have no customer service, my flight was in the early morning I missed my flight the check in people could not help told me to call office which opens at 9:00 eastern time. After the long wait, you get and agent that can not rebook the flight because they need to recalculate fees. The accounting department does not get in until later. I was told to wait 3-4 hours for the price. The fees are so excessive the agent warmed me ahead of time. I was charged 3 times the amount i paid, on top of what I paid. The ticket only states that rebooking they will recalculate fees so that leaves them free to charge what they want. I could have booked a cheaper ticket on the spot going to Expedia but then they were going to cancel my return flight and I was returning with my friend which was already there. We were returning together. I tried to avoid the fees but in the end they control the situation. I understand fees but basically I was overcharged and nothing I could do. The service is very poor. The flight attendants are curious, food is awful, entertainment if it works, is poor same movies on the return flight. The web site is also very primitive with google translation from Chinese. In addition, the return flight was from a small Chinese city, none of the agents speak English, not helpful. This airline is not customer oriented and not up to par with Star Alliance airlines. I do not recommend the airline, very unprofessional and not helpful to customers. There are plenty of other airlines.
AircraftBoeing 747-8
Type Of TravellerCouple Leisure
Cabin FlownEconomy Class
RouteNew York to Beijing
Date FlownNovember 2017
Seat Comfort 12345
Cabin Staff Service 12345
Food & Beverages 12345
Inflight Entertainment 12345
Ground Service 12345
Value For Money 12345
no
3/10

"spend more money to fly a decent airline"

(United Kingdom)

Trip Verified | Tokyo Haneda to London via Beijing. You get what you pay for, we got these tickets cheaply and now we see why. Check in at London was fine we could use the self check in and bag drop. However it was annoying that we couldn't check in online or select our seat but an email to air china allowed us to select our seats. The aircraft was old and shabby, my arm rest was missing the top of it so for the 11 hour flight was very uncomfortable and I had to put a pillow on it. The seats for a long haul flight were very uncomfortable and cramped. Leg room is very limited, the in flight entertainment is rubbish. The screens and remotes are very old and unresponsive and the choice of films are old and very limited. The food wasn't great it was a choice of rice and chicken or beef and rice. The drinks service was lacking also I'm glad I brought my own water or I would have gotten very dehydrated! The experience on our flight back was horrendous, we arrived to the airport with plenty of time to check in. However the self check in machines wouldn't work so we had to go to the desk which had a long queue. I have never experienced a check in desk crew who were so disorganised and useless, rather than opening more desks for the growing line they closed them. At one point there were two business class desks and no economy desks open. It took us over 1 hr 30 to get checked in and made it to our gate with 10 minutes to spare. I would suggest to the staff that rather than running around between desks just open more desks! Honestly I wouldn't fly with them again, I would rather spend more money to fly with a decent airline with good aircraft for a long haul flight.
AircraftA330-200
Type Of TravellerCouple Leisure
Cabin FlownEconomy Class
RouteTokyo Haneda to London via Beijing
Date FlownNovember 2017
Seat Comfort 12345
Cabin Staff Service 12345
Food & Beverages 12345
Inflight Entertainment 12345
Ground Service 12345
Value For Money 12345
no
3/10

"Worst airline I've ever flown"

(United Kingdom)

Trip Verified | London to Bangkok via Beijing. Worst airline I've ever flown on and worst airport I've had the misfortune of spending 7 hours in (Beijing). Rude staff, slow check in (1.5 hours at Bangkok!), Terrible processing at Beijing, late with no explanation, awful food and planes falling apart. No entertainment on the 5 hour flight. Don't do it.
Type Of TravellerCouple Leisure
Cabin FlownEconomy Class
RouteLondon to Bangkok via Beijing
Date FlownNovember 2017
Seat Comfort 12345
Cabin Staff Service 12345
Food & Beverages 12345
Inflight Entertainment 12345
Ground Service 12345
Value For Money 12345
no
1/10

"less price doesn't mean better value"

(United States)

Trip Verified | I have booked an Air China flight from Los Angeles to New Delhi via Beijing. It was for 3 family members and myself. I used Air China website of to buy the ticket. Flight departure time was 10 AM, from LAX airport. We were checking around 8 am when Air china customer service agent denied me boarding because in their reservation system my name was misspelled. They told me they can't release my boarding pass and I had to call customer call center, when I called their customer service number, no one picked up phone for 45 minutes. They denied me boarding and kept us waiting for more than an hour. Finally after multiple discussion with unfriendly Air China agents, they gave me back my checked-in luggage and said they can’t help me. We had to wait for 9 hours on LAX and booked a different flight 4 times expensive than the existing one. Check the specifics on ticket as soon as you get the booking confirmation, I take full responsibility of that, but customer care is responsible to help customers! Choose the airline carefully, less price doesn't mean better value.
Type Of TravellerFamily Leisure
Cabin FlownEconomy Class
RouteLos Angeles to Delhi via Beijing
Date FlownDecember 2016
Ground Service 12345
Value For Money 12345
no
7/10

"seats were surprisingly comfortable"

(United Kingdom)

Trip Verified | London to Yangon via Beijing. I made the mistake of reading the reviews about Air China after I'd booked my flights, and I was therefore a little apprehensive about travelling with them. I'm pleased to say that my experience was quite different and I needn't have worried! The flights from London to Beijing were operated by a newer 777 aircraft and the seats were surprisingly comfortable and the aircraft interiors were clean. The Beijing to Yangon flight was operated by a 737 aircraft and the interior seemed a little tired. I'd recommend checking the aircraft type before booking as spending over 5 hours on a 737 aircraft was a little uncomfortable. In terms of onboard service I was impressed by the quantity and quality of food and drinks provided. On all legs a drinks service was followed immediately by a meal and then another drinks service. The food was quite tasty, and on one occasion I even got a cold beer (a rarity on Chinese airlines!). While onboard staff can be abrupt, there does seem to be a genuine attempt being made to be helpful and to provide good customer service. From my experience, this appears merely to be a cultural difference, rather than being rude as such. As others have mentioned, the entertainment system isn't the best, with a very limited number of both Western and Asian films. On both the outward and return legs I had 7 hour layovers in Beijing. I'd recommend that passengers bear in mind the long queues and security checks when transferring to other international flights at Beijing which took over 1 hour on this occasion. I've noticed other reviewers laying blame on Air China for this (I had exactly the same experience when transferring at Beijing with China Southern Airlines on a previous occasion). While you might be able to make it through security if you have a short connection, your luggage may not be so lucky, and it would also be extremely stressful. Based on my experiences, I'd say Air China is superior to China Southern in terms of seat comfort, onboard service and catering; but inferior in terms of inflight entertainment and cleanliness. It's therefore a little unclear why China Southern receives such glowing reviews, and Air China receives awful reviews. It's also worth mentioning that mobile phone use is banned on all (I think) flights in China (including in flight mode). I don't think it's justified to give a bad review to a particular airline based on this, given that it's a legal requirement. I'd definitely be willing to fly Air China again. The flights were great value for money. However, I may be reluctant to do so in case I have one of the bad experiences that many others seem to have encountered.
AircraftBoeing 777-300ER / 737-800
Type Of TravellerSolo Leisure
Cabin FlownEconomy Class
RouteLondon to Yangon via Beijing
Date FlownNovember 2017
Seat Comfort 12345
Cabin Staff Service 12345
Food & Beverages 12345
Inflight Entertainment 12345
Ground Service 12345
Value For Money 12345
yes
2/10

"not recommend traveling this airline"

(United States)

Trip Verified | My boyfriend and I departed Newark airport for a flight to Beijing. Upon arriving in Beijing, we learned that our transfer flight to Chiang Mai, Thailand had been cancelled without prior notice and rescheduled for the following day (a full 24 hours later). I don't understand how an airline can do this without notifying their passengers in advance. This caused an immense amount of stress and anxiety in an airport where English-speaking support is limited. Finally, Air China was able to accommodate us in a hotel several hours later after we had to apply for temporary visas into China. It took 1-2 hours just to get the visa. This was a huge disappointment because it stole an entire day of our vacation in Thailand. On the way home, Air China cancelled our connecting flight in Beijing again and rescheduled us on a flight 16 hours later without letting us know in advance. However, there were 3 other flights earlier in the day going to our destination. It made no sense to me that Air China wouldn't accommodate us on one of the earlier flights. Instead they again caused a huge amount of distress by putting us on a flight 16 hours later which would mean we'd have to spend an entire day in the Beijing airport for no reason. Eventually Air China was able to accommodate us on an earlier flight but initially told us we'd need to pay $600 to move the flight. This was an absurd request seeing as Air China made this mess, not us. Ultimately we did not pay the fee and our flight was moved appropriately. We made the best of the situation but Air China made our trip extremely stressful and unpleasant. This was a trip booked over 6 months ago and we were really looking forward to it. Instead, we lost an entire day of our vacation because of Air China's incompetence and were not able to relax. I would not recommend traveling with this airline via Beijing. The only good things I can say about this airline is that the staff was nice (1-2 people we interacted with were unpleasant or unhelpful) and the food/beverage service on the flights was fast and efficient. Food was generally okay.
Type Of TravellerCouple Leisure
Cabin FlownEconomy Class
RouteNewark to Chiang Mai via Beijing
Date FlownNovember 2017
Seat Comfort 12345
Cabin Staff Service 12345
Food & Beverages 12345
Inflight Entertainment 12345
Ground Service 12345
Value For Money 12345
no
8/10

"very satisfied with their service"

(Germany)

Trip Verified | Flew Frankfurt to Hong Kong via Beijing. Air China offers great value for money and a decent, but not outstanding quality and service. I have flown Air China on around 30 legs now and I am very satisfied with their service. Value for money is unbeatable for some of their deals. Inflight meals are okay, beverages offered as well. Nothing outstanding but everything you would expect or need. Inflight entertainment is alright, a mix of Western and Asian movies. The fleet is not the most modern and in a few occasions the entertainment is not working in some seats. (1 out of maybe 50). I had one damaged bag which I claimed damaged and received 50 euro. On another occasion, my bag did not make the extremely short layover and was sent to my hotel 3 hours later. Air China however does not allow the operation of mobile phones, not even in flight mode! I would like to highlight that on my last trip I missed my plane due to my own fault and the Air China hotline rebooked me on the next available flights (2 legged flight!) Free of charge! I would choose Air China again any time and with the frequent special offers and really low prices, I certainly will.
Type Of TravellerSolo Leisure
Cabin FlownEconomy Class
RouteFrankfurt to Hong Kong via Beijing
Date FlownNovember 2017
Seat Comfort 12345
Cabin Staff Service 12345
Food & Beverages 12345
Inflight Entertainment 12345
Ground Service 12345
Wifi & Connectivity 12345
Value For Money 12345
yes