May 22, 2012

Posted by in Blog, Featured, Travel Tips | 43 Comments

Five Reasons To Never Fly Aerosvit Airlines

I recently flew JFK to Israel and back on Aerosvit Airlines. Aerosvit, what’s that? That band with the singer with the really big lips? Alas, no. A budget Ukranian airline.

(Yeah, I didn’t know they had planes in the Ukraine either.)

Awful food - review of Aerosvit Airlines

EEK!

Now, we all know I am cheap, and will often cut corners to save a few bucks. But, I can promise you I will never fly Aeroshit airlines again. Here’s why.

1. There are no movies.

Yup, you read that right. NO movies. On a 10-hour flight. Just screaming babies and snoring babushkas.

We are back in the 1960s, sans the glamorous flight attendants and ability to chain smoke cigarettes. That is a clear violation of human rights, and you probably don’t even need to read the rest of the reasons to know why you should count this airline out.

2. They don’t serve wine.

This needs no explanation. Oh, but their paper cups of concentrated juice (that, um, don’t come with the can – what??) must be an acceptable substitute, right? WRONG.

3. The food is awful.

The food is bad, even for airline food. Unfortunately, food quality is not the only problem. For one, they serve the “drinks” (the aforementioned cups of juice) a good 30 minutes before the meal. Are we supposed to sit, stare at, and not drink our kiddie cups for the half hour before our food comes?

Secondly, we received the EXACT same meal twice. I really wish I were joking. To be fair, I was randomly signed up for the Kosher meal, and maybe they didn’t have a wide selection of Jewstastic options.

Butttt, my friend with a non-Kosher meal received almost the exact same food as before, only that the fish had been swapped for chicken and noodles for rice. But everything else was identical - same sauce, same sides… same shit. 

Awful food - review of Aerosvit Airlines

This is not Dina's happy face.

4. The flight attendants are mean.

But I probably would be if I worked on the world’s worst airline, too. Anyways, though, I don’t really know why you’re still reading.

Because shitty (and free) wine and movies are the only things that make long-haul flights bearable, and I already established their absence in numbers 1 and 2.

5. The planes seem alarmingly out of control.

This is probably because they are from the 1960s. We definitely had a few unpleasant swerves and up-downs (that’s the technical term, I’m sure) on my flights. I think that on all four of our flights, the passengers clapped upon landing.

Though clapping on planes is always unacceptable (humanity’s self-worth dies just a little bit every time it happens), its being a common occurrence on an airline is def not a good sign. There were also ashtrays on one of our planes — which means it had to be old.

Broken stuff - review of Aerosvit Airlines

Random belt I found in my seat. Why do I get the feeling this is supposed to be connected to something?

Did I mention there aren’t any movies? 

Any airlines that you’ve vowed never to fly again? What about airlines that you’ve really loved?

  1. Wow that sounds terrible. Whenever booking a long haul flight, I’ll scroll through Delta’s options looking for a plane that has an in seat video entertainment system…I don’t even like the shared ones (mainly because everyone else but me has terrible taste in television and movies, naturally)

    • Haha, well don’t ever fly Aerosvit then! You are smart. I just go with cheapest, and sometimes it doesn’t work out so well!

      • i was stay 3 days in airport as ajel cuze they don,t want let me fly to minsk …all them ask me to inter ukrain and i don,t want …shit airline and country

  2. I have made 3 round trip flights from the U.S. to Kiev and this all sounds about par for the course. Did you enjoy the stale, slightly pungent aroma of fish lingering in the air after your meal? Did you have something sharp and probably unsafe prodding your back the entire godforsaken time? Oy. Never again.

    • Haha, Layne, I totes forgot that you’ve probably flown to Kiev a lot! I am so glad I have someone to share in the Aeroshit experience with, though I hope that neither of us ever has to fly it again.

  3. Oh my I had to laugh at the photos, they are hilarious. I guess sometimes when they say budget they really do mean budget.

  4. Well, now you’ve got me all excited for my Bishkek to Kiev to Copenhagen in July! Isn’t Kiev airport about the lamest you’ve ever been to, as well?

    • Yes! Kiev airport sucks, big time. Copenhagen though, that should be cool!

      • I honestly don’t know much at all about the place, but I’ve got a friend living there so I assume it should be an awesome time. At any rate, Bishkek – Copenhagen – Tbilisi – Bishkek it was the most absurd way I could think of to get a new Kyrgyzstan visa!

      • Also, what mileage program did you put your flight towards? They don’t seem to partner with anybody?

        • That is absurd.. and awesome! I couldn’t earn any miles for the flight because I didn’t pay for it, but I’m pretty sure they partner with Delta.

          • Carlos Labadia says:

            Flew Aerosvit three times this week during EURO 2012. What a joke. I was not looking for a cheap airline (which it wasn’t anyways), but they were all that was available. What a joke. All of the standard food and service-with-a-sneer jokes apply so I wont dwell on them. What is truly disgusting is the delays, uncalled for change of gates after the plane was already late, and horrible staff attitude. Matches the whole state of the sovietised Ukraine right now. Corrupt cops, they have brutally and inhumanely killed more than 10,000 stray dogs prior to the tournament, and a total whitewash for the west. Skinhead pro-Russian thugs seem to run free throughout the country. Several gleaming glass towers have been built in Donetsk for the EURO but if you look closely, they are not finished nor will they ever be. Wide streets but no stores and a completely demoralised populace. What the hell was Euro doing holding a championship in this godforsaken place? Aerosvit is a symptom of the socialistic/communistic system here.

            • I live here in Ukraine and thanking to God the situation is not as bad in this godforsaken place as you described it. Sometimes it’s really funny to see phenomenal documentary about Ukraine on BBC. When I saw the film about Ukrainian skinheads I was smiling and thinking: why I still alive in this country? You didn’t mention where are you from, thus I cannot compare and don’t want to do so. ‘Corrupted cops’ also didn’t report me the numbers of killed stray dogs as they did for you. However, apart from new stadiums 4 new runways, 5 new terminals and many other infrastructural improvements, which are already in use, were built obviously to show ‘whitewash for the west’. I don’t know if you have been to Ukraine during Soviet era. That time you even didn’t enter here due to the visa procedure that is not the case for you anymore but still actual obstacle for me to visit western countries. I visited few games in Kiev and spoke to foreign fans abroad. Their attitude was very positive.

              • Western media does tend to portray things in a dramatic light… I was very surprised to visit Egypt recently and find things very different than they appeared on CNN!

            • I didn’t get to visit the Ukraine at all, so I can’t speak to the rest of it, but I definitely agree about the bad attitudes of the Aerosvit staff!

  5. It’s sad to read this post as I am Ukrainian and I am proud for my country. However I have to agree with your five reasons. You are even lucky because you didn’t experience the reason number zero – awful delays from Aerosvit. Fortunately we have better carrier here. It’s named Ukraine International Airlines (UIA), which more punctual and polite. They don’t have long-range aircrafts as Aerosvit has. In reward they have a partnership with many European major airlines, such as KLM, AirFrance, British Airways and so on. Therefore you have to make another stepover somewhere at Amsterdam or Paris. They are also quite competitive in term of price and you can collect your miles around the world. They have also a better fleet: B 737-800, Antonov-148 (a brand new Ukrainian type). BTW, Aerosvit also started a renewal program and has bought few B 737 and B 767 this year. Nevertheless, I can’t recommend Aerosvit. I am an aviation engineer in Kiev and know many pilots working for Aerosvit. They are disappointed and looking for other companies. So this is a managerial issue and probably main policy not to care for people whether they are passengers or crew. Please accept my regret for your adventures, I still have a hope you get better impressions about Ukrainian airlines next time.

    • Thanks for your thoughtful reply, Pavlo. And I mean absolutely no insult to the Ukraine. I don’t think that companies are necessarily a reflection of their home countries — if so, it’d be really hard to be proud of the USA a lot of the time! I will definitely look into UIA for my future flights, since I do hope to someday visit the Ukraine. Thanks again for stopping by and commenting!

  6. Wow, that bad huh? We usually fly Malaysia Airlines or AirAsia here, and their services are superb.

    • Really? I would have had no idea they flew to the Ukraine. We were just taking the cheapest option, but I’m glad to know I have a few other choices next time I go!

  7. You’ll be happy to know that AeroSvit is maintaining a strong commitment to the title of worst airline in the world. The hot dog/ tomato/ pancake breakfast was a nice touch, though.

  8. I just flew with Aerosvit via JFK – LWO and they now have inflight entertainment on each seat… and it was probably the best airline I’ve flew.

    • Wow, really, Andriy?? You know, they probably saw this post and really stepped up their game because of it! Haha. Anyways, I’m glad that you had a good experience!

  9. Carlos Labadia says:

    Dude…you must be accustomed to traveling by rickshaw

  10. Stranded in hell says:

    We’re currently in the Kiev airport and might gouge our eyes out. Your list is accurate, though the non-belief in lines and disregard of personal space is also troubling, we flee threw here to tel aviv and had to visit the ticket counter both times, where 4 employees texted and rolled their eyes while the same clerk identified herself as the only employee who can use the computer system. Troubling stuff indeed.

    • Oh no, Charles! I’m sorry you went through such a rough experience. Hopefully, it all worked out in the end!

    • Carlos Labadia says:

      Reminds me of the “new” terminal at Donetsk. At least 100 check-in counters but only one check-in girl. The line went out the terminal and to the parkade that wasn’t completed for Euro 2012. The parkade doesn’t matter anyways since nobody uses the airport.

  11. R. Bin Saud says:

    Strange comments… I flew from JFK to KBP last month, and this was a nice, cheap flight indeed. Business class, as I never fly chicken class: always disappointed, even with AF or BA. This review, found via YouTube, reflects quite well my personal impression:
    http://www.travelfirst.com/pays3/aerosvit/aerosvit_business_class_bangkok_kiev_prague.html

  12. People always say shet about our ukraine. Thats so stupid. U have to be so unpolite to do this.

    • Carlos Labadia says:

      I don’t think that people necessarily say “shet” about Ukraine although I was appalled to hear about the hundreds of thousands of street dogs that were savagely slaughtered prior to Euro 2012. Also, we had a terrible encounter with a corrupt Donetsk street cop and taxi driver who were in cahoots to rip us off on the day of the Spain-Portugal game. However, most people (including Sergey at Budget/Avis rent-a-car at the non-functioning Donetsk airport) were fine and fairly warm. Also, we were treated well at the “resort” hotel on the Black Sea where we stayed to avoid the rip-off Donetsk prices. The problem with Aerosvit (and I suspect most of the service industry in Ukraine) is that people are not paid well; hence, they don’t give a crap about the customer. When you couple this with the scary and hell-bent russification that is occurring in the country, you have a serious problem. Perhaps if that scumbag Putin were to be out of the picture, a fledgling independent country like the Ukraine could develop into something more like a western country should be. In the meantime, you’re stuck with the communist backwater politicians and “no” service industry that the marxists were so well known for. Just my two cents. Ukraine is beautiful, the women are beautiful, and there seems to be a well-organised agricultural situation. Therefore, the problem lies with communism and graft. Get rid of all of the russian thugs and you have a chance. If you decide to continue letting them run your country in their thuggish manner, you will never evolve into a civilised society. If you embrace capitalism, you have a chance.

  13. Well, u right about comunists. But im from western Ukraine, city of Rivne. we have much better situation. We r totally against comunism. We go for Europe, but against homosexuality.

  14. By the way, Ukraine is very good country. Especialy western. There is lots of christian people. In my city Rivne, where about 250 000 people live, we have so many churches, like baptist and pentacostal. And there are many missionaries that go around the world to preach and help. Lots of missionaries go to russian non-christian cities, africa, india and others.
    we have lots of good people. I pray for Ukraine and believe that God is blessing and will bless our country. And I wish the same for all countries around the world.
    Be blessed everyone!!!

  15. thanks for this review.. i rememmber 3 months a go it saved my life;) I didnt bough a ticket to fly with them from europe to thailand… And thanksgod!:)

    Bytheway, they are going to bankruptcy,so… they deserve it :D haha

    http://www.15min.lt/en/article/business/aerosvit-s-bankruptcy-causes-no-disruptions-to-vilnius-kiev-flights-527-293708

    • Ha! You’re welcome, Ro! I’m glad I could be of service. And I’m SO not surprised that they are going bankrupt!

  16. Hto smietsya z dryguh toy byde osmiyanuy.

  17. U guys r funny! Ha ha!!! Aerosvit will bankrupt only in ur dreams! I know people like .u waiting for that. But yea, I wonder where u guys r from. If u can tell me. Would be nice of u. I will discover ur super nice country.

  18. Xavier Church says:

    When I initially commented I clicked the “Notify me when new comments are added” checkbox and now each time a comment is added I get three emails with the same comment. Is there any way you can remove people from that service? Appreciate it!Roofing Repair of Irving, 1117 Brandon Ct., Irving, TX 75060-4948 – (972) 200-4770

    • Hey Xavier! The next time you receive an email, there’ll be a link to unsubscribe from comments. Click on that. Thanks!

  19. Eastern Europeans are allergic to glass windows and other service-position trappings. Former Soviet citizens especially. Dealing with customers is like their kryptonite. If you met any of those people in another context, they’d probably have bought you a bottle of vodka and given you caviar.
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