Flying to a New Country? Start Experiencing the Culture Before You’ve Left the Cabin!
You’re booking a flight to Vietnam for your vacation – either to visit friends or for an interesting business trip – but which airline do you choose?
The one with the shortest journey time?
The one you always fly with, because – whilst they aren’t anything special – they’ve never let you down?
“There is always a first time…”
As the range of international airlines flying to Vietnam increases, so do the number of factors which you need to consider when booking your flights. For those who travel on a regular basis, flying with different airlines not only allows you to experience types of aircraft but also allows you to get to know the country you’re visiting that little bit better; especially if you choose to fly with an airline that best represents the country you’re visiting.
It’s a natural choice then that you would choose a Vietnam-based airline when travelling to and around Vietnam, but why should you?
(1)You’re going to Vietnam, so start enjoying the unique culture of this charming country at the very beginning of your journey. It’s a cliché but much of the charm of Vietnam lies in the gentleness of the Vietnamese people; somehow western cabin crew just don’t have the calm, relaxing effect of a Vietnamese smiling face accompanied by elegant hand gestures and perfect, but lilting English.
(2) Vietnam-based airlines dominate the cities and airports you are likely to be visiting. Your arrival in the country is likely to be through the international airports at Hanoi or Ho Chi Minh where many of the country’s national airlines have their main bases but if you need to travel on to one of the 17 other seventeen domestic airports it also makes sense to buy all you air travel with the same airline.
(3) We all prefer to fly on state-of-the-art aircraft rather than something manufactured decades ago. I recommend that you check out the average age of any airline fleet with which you are considering booking your flights. Any airline with a fleet age less than British Airways, which I use as my benchmark, passes this test. In this case BA have an average fleet age of 11.4 years which is 3.5 years older than the fleet of Vietnam Airlines for example.
(4) It’s great to start your journey from your friendly local airport and making a short hop to join an aircraft originating elsewhere in Europe for the longer leg is better than a slog to Heathrow followed by changing aircraft somewhere in the Far East all at the risk of losing your luggage for a very short final leg. Many Vietnam based airlines currently have flights to Vietnam from Paris and Frankfurt with London soon to follow.
(5) Finally, you can sit back and relax in the sound knowledge that you are not just following the unfortunates who chose their airline based purely on price and then spent an interminable journey regretting their choice.