Kunming Huayang Academy for Language and Culture

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China Eastern again

marko21 (14 posts) • +4

So guys, bumping a bit of an old post but just want to let everyone know what happened to me and my GF recently when I booked with Skyscanner with China Eastern and Aeroflot from Kunming --> Beijing --> Moscow --> Belgrade. Yes huge flight but I was born in Serbia so wanted to go there from 3rd July - 10th August

for a small holiday and decided to book with China Eastern to Beijing then Aeroflot the rest of the way... all connecting under one booking.
We made a big mistake.
What I should have done was check statistics of flights and how much they are on average delayed each day which I only did once I booked it in, also to spend more for a less risky venture and less chance of getting f***ed over by a low budget company.

Our flight was at 9pm on the 3rd July, we were told at around 9:30pm by CE that we would be going to a hotel until further notice, this means walking from one side of KM airport to the other and cramming onto two buses, driving for what felt like 20 minutes to this little ghetto hotel village, we went to our rooms which had many mosquitos inside, had to swat them with my useless air ticket. By the time we got the hotel, it was around 11pm, we got to sleep around 12 due to the excitement, then they woke us up around 2 saying we were going back to the airport, our Aeroflot connecting flight was at 5:50am in Beijing which we were certainly going to miss. We cram back on the buses and drive back to the KM Airport and get on wait in a huge line for customs where only two people are working and there around 3-4 flights trying to get through, we all finally manage to get through customs and get on the plane, we fly out around 4:30am. We are in the air for about 2 1/2 hours almost landing in Beijing until the pilot announces in Chinese that we are going to be turning around and landing in Taiyuan because of ATC in Beijing and also the bad weather. All the while the plane is having this constant minor turbulence on and off throughout the whole flight, which isn't helping anyone.

We land in Taiyuan, and we are sat down in one of the gates, probably one of the most ghetto as it reeks of piss, we get some food and as the minutes turn to hours, we end up staying there for around 10 hours without any news or info, until we are finally told we are ready to board, we board the plane and then we have to wait another 3 hours in the plane sitting idle, at least there was aircon working, by this point its around 8pm on the 4th when we land in Beijing after almost 24 hour delay just to get from Kunming to Beijing. We finally land and line up for check in with aeroflot, we are told CE have to sort it but we manage to get them to eventually sort it and they give us another ghetto hotel somewhere in BJ until the next Aeroflot flight was available.
After all the delays, what was meant to be a 24 hour total flight turned into 60 hours of transit. Anyway smooth sailing with Aeroflot, no problems at all, good planes and good service, no delays.

On the way back...
We fly back to Beijing with Aeroflot, again no problems with Aeroflot at all and get to Beijing in the early morning of the 11th August, we board the plane at 7:55am, we have to wait in the plane under warm air conditioning until around 11:30, dying... we finally take off thankfully and also grateful we finally arrived to Kunming and not some random city like Taiyuan. Another turbulent flight with constant shaking of the plane,

Me and my girlfriend made a solid promise to never fly with CHINA EASTERN again.

I recommend you don't either. Spend that extra 100-200 on a better company, seriously.

AlexKMG (2185 posts) • +2

It's like this every August in China now. Summer travel season + thunderstorms + military air space control for exercises = delayed and cancelled or both for flights. They cancelled about a fifth of flights on latest trip from shangdong. I was lucky and only had a six hour delay, but pretty miserable flying at 4am. Can't imagine the suffering of 10hours at a gate in Taiyuan. For me, I can't blame China Eastern as I could hear over the announcements at the airport that pretty much every airline had its share of delays and cancellations. It's still ongoing, so if your considering a trip in China, especially east china, try your best for a trains.

rejected_goods (287 posts) • +3

add to what have been mentioned as factor of delays. the major problem confronting the chinese airlines is, not having enough pilots to go around. when a pilot starts a pre flight the duty hour starts, a delay means the pilot/s would be "out of hour" due to regulation. a new set of crew has to be shipped in. a lot of juggling hence longer delay. the Aeroflot and the other majors have a better system in rostering pilots. :-)

marko21 (14 posts) • +1

Yep so if anyone is planning a trip out of Kunming, especially around July/August as AlexKMG mentioned, I highly recommend purchasing a flight that goes straight out of the country or through a less delayed city rather than connecting through Beijing. So the options for Kunming to consider would be Thailand, Malaysia and Hong Kong as your cheapest options. Chengdu, Chongqing and Guangzhou would surely be ok compared to Beijing.

mike4g_air (756 posts) • +1

Thanks for posting Marko 21..

I suspect CE lied about their "BAD Weather in BJ.....their slot probably got bumbled...

I also vowed never to fly with CE again....

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