There are only two options flying from Australia to South Africa direct, Qantas (QF) and South African Airlines (SAA).
Qantas runs Sydney-Johannesburg Boeing 747 flights six days each week as QF63 from Sydney to Johannesburg, with plans to boost this to a daily service during July and August 2018 to cater to increased demand.
Kate Webster recently flew to South Africa with Qantas. Here is the verdict.
Flight: Sydney (SYD) – Johannesburg (JNB) QF63
When: 30 April 2018
Aircraft: Boeing 747-400
Flight time: 14 hrs 5 mins
CHECK IN: I had flown domestically from the Gold Coast to Sydney to connect with this flight, so my luggage was checked all the way through from the Gold Coast. All I had to do on arrival in Sydney is get the domestic transfer to the International Airport, which was easy and quick. On arrival at the international airport, I did clear customs and do the security check again. I already had been given my boarding pass for the flight at the Gold Coast check-in, so it was straight to the gate for boarding.
THE SEAT: The single beam seat design provides greater leg room with a 78.7cm (31in) seat pitch with seat width up to 44.9cm (17.7in) and 15.2cm (6in) recline. It comes with an innovative netted footrest for extra leg support and articulating seat base and ergonomic cushions.
FOOD AND WINE: The menu consisted of a main, Mid-flight snacks and dinner. I opted for the chicken fricassee with mushroom cream sauce, roasted potatoes, carrot, red onion and peas for the main, snacked on cheese and biscuits mid-flight and for dinner had the braised beef with creamy potatoe mash, broccoli and peas. All meals come with a full drink service, with wines matched to the meal. revolutionised the way you eat onboard. The meal service is quicker, with meals being delivered and cleared faster; giving you more time to do the things you want to do. Best of all, you can choose your meal online up to 12 hours prior to departure on selected flights. Simply go to Menu Select through manage booking.
ENTERTAINMENT: There is a larger 26.9cm (10.6in) widescreen entertainment touch screen monitor for inflight entertainment with a wide selection of movies, TV shows, documentaries, radio channels and games. For those who like to read, the inflight magazine is packed full of engaging reads, destination information and more.
THE VERDICT: The newer planes make all the difference on a long-haul flight. There is a roomy cabin interior and ergonomically designed seating and the self-service snack bar with healthy snacks and drinks is a real hit. For a direct flight to South Africa, Qantas is a great choice. Make sure you join up to the Qantas Frequent Flyer Program so you get your points too. Top tip: If you already have points with Qantas Frequent Flyer Program, think about using them to upgrade your flight.
Kate flew as a guest of Qantas and South African Tourism.