Two Pesos at a SkyTeam: Saudia 777-200 Economy Class

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The prayer room in the back says it all. This is no generic flight experience.

Turn on the in-flight entertainment and everything is edited and sanitized. A local cartoon featured a character with a metal face guard like I saw on one elderly passenger.

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Saudi Arabia (303)

The seat is an economy seat, no more or less. There are various rows with extra leg room or only two seats so it pays to study the seat map. I got a row of two in the back with three seats in front so I could angle my legs out with the third seat acting as a shield.

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There is a modest amenity kit.

Saudia Amenity Kit Economy

Food is fine and includes both local and more generic options, with a proper menu.

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Saudi Arabia (311)

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The snack bar is stocked with little snacks and juices, would have been better if I had remembered to take a picture before clean-up.

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The flight crews are primarily Filipino women with a few men overseeing things. Indifferent but not US-style surly.

On my four Saudia flights, two long-haul, two short-haul, I do not think I have ever seen passengers, in both classes, constantly popping and up and down as much as this.

UPGRD Matthew has the definitive review, I am just am amateur.

Saudia is often reasonably priced for revenue tickets and a good option for long-suffering Delta flyers looking for awards. See also my take on Saudia Business Class.

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9 years ago

In addition to Ozaer’s points, I’d think flying a US-KSA flight on Saudia wouldn’t have terrorism threats? Also, what did you mean when you wrote:
“On my four Saudia flights, two long-haul, two short-haul, I do not think I have ever seen passengers, in both classes, constantly popping and up and down as much as this.”

Rapid Travel Chai
9 years ago
Reply to  Joey

@Joey – there was constant socializing, constant milling about, lots of large families with people checking on each other, on one my wife and were laughing to see how soon the guys in front of us would pop up for another bathroom/social trip. The atmosphere was fun though not all that conducive to sleep, partial exception the redeye from Jeddah to New York.

Jewish Traveller
Jewish Traveller
9 years ago

…that awkward moment when you realize because of your religion, Saudia won’t let you fly them…

Rapid Travel Chai
9 years ago

@Jewish Traveller – the religious aspects are thorny like the geopolitics in the region, I chose to see and observe and not publish my opinions without having the deep understanding that addressing such issues requires. Transit under 18 hours does not require a visa and I believe officially Jews can fly Saudia and transit, unofficially I have not seen enough solid evidence of actual practice, since understandably few report having tried.

Ozaer N.
9 years ago

Great review!…We do need to keep in mind there is a culture difference between Saudi and the U.S. It is safe to say that a Muslim can feel at ease traveling this airline without worrying if the passenger across from him is going to snitch to the flight attendants that hes up to something, when in reality, he is just trying to do his evening prayers. Furthermore, this is economy and look at the food you get! There is no way Delta will even think about giving you this much on an economy flight.

Rapid Travel Chai
9 years ago
Reply to  Ozaer N.

@Ozaer N – excellent points, a non-threatening environment to pray is a key benefit for the observant.

9 years ago

The cartoon comment made me laugh so hard I think I just woke up my daughter.

Nooooo thanks, I’d rather work on my taxes than fly this airline. nooo thanks.

Rapid Travel Chai
9 years ago
Reply to  jason

@jason – I had good luck with screenshots on this trip, starting with the Mecca and Paradise pointers!