SOUTH AFRICAN AIRWAYS
Being cocooned in the Baobab Premium Class Lounge in Johannesburg ahead of a long-haul flight to Perth gives you a taste of what to expect on a flight in Business Class with South African Airways.
After spending the past three weeks on a game safari with Bench Africa,
I’m enjoying chatting with international travellers about the thrill of seeing the Big Five. We board the A340-300 bound for Perth where we are promptly given a glass of Méthode Cap Classique bubbly, which sets us up for a comfortable, relaxing experience.
There are 38 business class seats in a 1-2-1 configuration on this flight and mine is one of them. I’m in the middle on a forward-facing aisle seat, which is 53cm wide, with a privacy wall that enables me to enjoy my dinner in peace.
One of the pleasures of this long-haul flight is the fact I can sit upright, adjust the leg rest, and get a lumbar massage while punching buttons on the control panel for the TV (there are more than 100 movies and 100 TV programs to choose from). I love that there is a convenient storage locker for my laptop and backpack, a pigeonhole for my water bottle, and a space to hang up the noise-cancelling headphones.
When the plane has reached cruising altitude, I enjoy a warm bread roll served with a grilled beef fillet, creamy polenta, buttered asparagus, thyme and ginger.
After browsing the entertainment selection, ranging from movies to TV and music, I open up my amenity kit pack and check its contents: Crabtree & Evelyn Jojoba Oil Hand Cream and
Lip Balm, socks and eyepatches, toothbrush, toothpaste and comb.
When I finish watching Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children and The Girl on the Train, I accept a fluffy pillow from the steward, don eye patches and curl up on the lie-flat bed with a 185cm pitch while tuning out to Playlist Africa.
Worth mentioning is the fact the staff keep the cabin lovely and clean, which was greatly appreciated. And, after a breakfast of fresh fruit salad, natural yoghurt, scrambled eggs with corn fritters and beef sausage, I’m more refreshed than I’ve ever been on a red-eye flight and I’m ready to hit the ground running.