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"Battle of the low cost airlines" Kulula vs Mango.

Atlanta, Georgia
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1,850 posts
25 reviews
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"Battle of the low cost airlines" Kulula vs Mango.

In the states, I used the so called "low cost" airlines such as South West, Spirit, Air Tran, Jet Blue among others. I'm planning to book from Jberg or Lanceria to Cape Town. Transportation is not a problem so I can go either location. Some of these airlines do have their pros and cons in the states. I used Kulula and boarded BA aircaft few years ago if I remember correctly. The service was good and had no problems. I did some research on both and seems to me prices are about the same but Kulula appears to have the edge. Is there a difference among them in terms of service, bags, and, the famous "hidden fees" I should be aware off? Thank you.

Tempe, Arizona
Destination Expert
for South Africa, Sabi Sand Game Reserve
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1. Re: "Battle of the low cost airlines" Kulula vs Mango.

I recall having a Kulula ticket and then actually flying on a BA aircraft next to people who had paid higher fares for their BA tickets! I think that's not so common now. Kulula certainly is a good valye.

I have been using Mango and see absolutely no benefit to using SA or BA - or even Kulula.. I like Mango.. newish planes, good service. I'll be on one of their flights from Cape Town to Durban Sunday.

Dave Patterson - Owner - The Africa Safari

Randburg, Gauteng...
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2. Re: "Battle of the low cost airlines" Kulula vs Mango.

I flew last week on Mango, they had the best prices and service was great. It is low cost so you have to buy drinks, but i took my own water and snacks. I could not fault it and was very happy with the prices which was all inclusive. Newer aircraft as well.

Lyn - Owner - Thorntree Tours and Safaris

South Africa
5 posts
1 review
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3. Re: "Battle of the low cost airlines" Kulula vs Mango.

Kulula and British Airways domestic flights in South Africa are both operated by Comair. Whilst Mango, South African Airways and SA Express are all owned by the SA Government.

Hidden fees haven't yet become as large a part of the South African aviation industry as they are in the US and the UK, although we are heading that way. There's not much between the airlines. Mango has slightly less legroom than Kulula. They both basically allow 20kg check-in luggage, but Mango has a slight edge as it doesn't work on a 1-piece system like Kulula. Kulula charges R35 if you want to reserve your seat in advance, so Mango has a slight advantage there. If you like humour, you're more likely to hear it in the inflight announcements with Kulula. If you need a bit of flexibility built into your schedule, the Mango Flex tickets are handy.

Rob - Owner - SouthAfrica.TO

Atlanta, Georgia
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4. Re: "Battle of the low cost airlines" Kulula vs Mango.

Thanks to all the above friends.

I will asume booking online is better over the phone. Will check on that.

You guys are awesome!!!!!! SA TA really rocks!!!!!

Los Angeles...
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5. Re: "Battle of the low cost airlines" Kulula vs Mango.

You even have to pay for water on Mango! My gripe with them was the way they boarded the plane at Johannesburg where there was a jetway and no first class cabin. The people seated in the front half of the plane boarded from the gate through the jetway and onto the plane. The people in the back half arrived at the end of the jetway and were directed down two flights of metal stairs, across the tarmac, and then up portable steps through the back door of the plane. Not a pleasant experience when it was not necessary.

Gold Coast...
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6. Re: "Battle of the low cost airlines" Kulula vs Mango.

I am afraid what you have described is nothing unusual, and these things are typical of what to expect with some of the budget airlines.

After one experience as you described of battling up and down 2 lots of metal stairs here in Oz with my bags never again. The flight was not even much cheaper.

As for first class I would be interested to know if any budget airlines offer this, its seems a bit of an oxymoron and to me does not seem to make a lot of sense.


Paris, France
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871 posts
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7. Re: "Battle of the low cost airlines" Kulula vs Mango.

If by chance you are going to book tickets to South Africa with BA then if you book the internal flights with them on the same ticket it works out about the same price as Kulula and Mango, we do this each time. I presume it is the same with SAA as well.

Edited: 4:08 am, September 06, 2013
8. Re: "Battle of the low cost airlines" Kulula vs Mango.

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