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1time from CPT to JNB

14 Sep 2009

I like 1time Airlines - I think they're courteous, transparent and thoughtful about the way they treat those travelling with kids. For this flight review we were very chuffed to take advantage of a 1time flight special, where they were offering flights from Cape Town to Johannesburg for R299 each (the mile low special). While I like their prices and noticed an improvement in their onboard advertising, I also need to point out a few areas where I noticed a deterioration in the level of service from them on this flight, notably:

  • baggage handling

  • seat space

  • contents of their kiddies pack

  • (I have written to 1time to get their feedback on these matters).

    1time Airline check-in at Cape Town International Airport

    The good

    Let's start with the positives. The price was very very good. The queue at the check-in desk was non-existent, which was probably helped by the fact that we were early. I was taken aback at how quiet and smooth the takeoff was, and then realised that this was because I was sitting near the front in the 5th row. Previously when I'd sat at the back in between the engines, I felt like I was in the middle of a washing machine on spin cycle - it makes a huge difference in the noise level to sit at the front of the 1time planes. One Time airline have also improved their online advertising - whereas beforehand they've mainly advertised Count Pushkin vodka (which I felt was inappropriate for children), on this flight there was a lot of advertising of the Sanlam Liquid product (a handout with energy bars was welcomed) and 1timeholidays.co.za

    Baggage handling

    After arriving at Johannesburg O.R. Tambo Airport, we went to carousel 8 to pick up our luggage...which never arrived. After a long wait during which our anxiety levels gradually increased, we approached a 1time staff member for help, and he searched around and then eventually established that 1time had transported our suitcase on an earlier flight. We went to 1time's buggage section, where our suitcase was sitting outside their offices unattended to. Without there being anybody to speak to, we took our suitcase (anybody could have taken it).

    Seat space

    The seat in front of me couldn't maintain a reasonable angle, and flexed back into me when the person in front sat on it. This led to an uncomfortable journey from Cape Town to Johannesburg.

    Contents of their kiddies pack

    I suspect there's been a mini cost-cutting exercise, as 1time no longer offer a juice in their free kiddies pack.

    ACSA develops a sense of humour

    Gotta give ACSA their due - they do seem to be trying. They were advertising an SMS line whereby suggestions to improve their services could be sent (SMS 083-293-3273) and prizes could be won (2 KLM return tickets to Amsterdam, domestic return flight from Mango Airlines and a Car Hire voucher with Budget Car & Van rental). This was nice but is also a bit of a gimmick - the issues with ACSA are well known. One area I thought there was a genuine improvement was the sense of humour of the security at Cape Town International, who, after scanning my bag, informed me that bananas were not allowed on the flight!

    under the wing of a 1time aircraft

    Airport transfer

    We used ezShuttle's airport transfer service to get from our home in Pinelands to Cape Town International Airport. The cost of R260 was almost the same as each one-way ticket with 1time cost from Cape Town to Johannesburg!

    Two boys in a pissing competition

    These competing advertisements by Jupiter and Ogilvy, situated behind the 1time check-in (at Cape Town airport), reminded us of 2 little boys in a pissing competition.

    Jupiter ad behind 1time check-in at Cape Town Airport

    Ogilvy ad behind 1time check-in at Cape Town Airport

    Cape Town Airport under construction

    Parts of Cape Town International Airport are still under construction (here's a bit outside the domestic departures hall).

    Cape Town Airport under construction

    Airport security lapse?

    This looked like a security lapse at Cape Town Airport. The gate on the right is the entrance to the domestic departures hall and the gate on the left leads you to the hall is where you pick up your luggage after arriving in Cape Town. The door to the luggage hall was open, and when I peered inside there was nobody stopping you from entering.

    domestic departures hall at Cape Town International Airport

    about Time

    I enjoy reading in-flight magazines, and here's a selection of what 1time were advertising in theirs (travel-related):

    Buffalo City tourism (or East London, as it is more commonly known)

    Eastern Cape Parks was quoting 20% off and a free gift to the first 20 people to make a booking and quote ECP09, for the following reserves - Dwesa, Silaka, Mkhambathi and the Great Fish River.

    1time Holidays were flogging their Johannesburg - Zanzibar packages (R8690 per person sharing for 7 nights).

    Bushmans Kloof Wilderness Reserve & Wellness retreat.

    Champagne Sports Resort in the Drakensberg (KwaZulu-Natal).

    Starlight Cruises and MSC Cruises.

    ezShuttle airport transfers in Cape Town, Gauteng and Durban.

    City Lodge hotels & Netflorist partnership.

    Cape Town Lodge Hotel (R750)

    Tau Game Lodge in the Madikwe Game Reserve.

    SA Leisure Hotels (Executive Hotels in Midrand, Johannesburg; The Pearl of Hout Bay, Cape Town; Mogale Private Game Lodge in Krugersdorp, Johannesburg; Morningside Hotel in Durban).

    Avis Car Rental.

    Mango R345

    People in orange Mango uniforms were advertising Mango Airlines one-way tickets from R345 outside the departures hall at Cape Town Airport (it delighted our little toddler to see people in orange).

    Booking details

    invoice date Thu, 30 Jul 2009
    name xxx invoice no. xxx
    booking code xxx booking status Confirmed

    Flight details

    flight no sector departure date departure time arrival date arrival time
    1T 132 Cape Town - Joburg Mon, 14 Sep 2009 19:25 Mon, 14 Sep 2009 21:25

    Invoice items

    total nett cost R592.11
    total taxes and levies R222.00
    total vat R82.89
    total, incl vat R897.00
    1time airline (Pty) Ltd
    Company Registration Number: 2003/020975/07 VAT Registration Number: 4010209023
    PO Box 7110 Bonaero Park Gauteng South Africa 1622
    Tel: 0861 345 345 Fax: 0866 764 013

    Imperial Car Rental is now Europcar

    The rebranding of a major brand is very very difficult, so I was not surprised to see that Europcar South Africa are still advertising the fact that Imperial Car Rental rebranded into Europcar (on 1 June 2009).

    Imperial Car Rental is now Europcar South Africa

    Why did we fly to Johannesburg?

    Other than for reviewing this 1time Joburg flight, we had a number of interesting things to do up north:

    • we reviewed Comet Car Hire, who have a very interesting business model - instead of paying rent at O.R. Tambo International Airport, they meet you at the drop-off-and-go.

    • we visited Bakubung Bush Lodge in the Pilanesberg - a malaria free area to view the big 5 (we saw 3 of them...up close)

    • whilst in the area we lived the high life at the Sun City Hotel

    • we then reviewed the Ponciana Guesthouse at the Hartebeespoort Dam

    Comet Car Hire at Johannesburg Airport

    Other 1time flight reviews

    27 Apr 2009

    1time from JNB to CPT

    24 Apr 2009

    Review of a 1time flight from Cape Town to Johannesburg

    28 Dec 2009

    A 1time JNB-CPT flight review

    12 Aug 2007

    A 1time Johannesburg - Cape Town flight review


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