RwandAir Review: Nairobi To Lusaka + 15 Quick Travel Tips!

Reviews, Travel, Travel Tips
RwandAir_Review

Howdy my friends! 😀 In the spirit of preparing to travel again in the future, I am sharing with you all the insider tips from our return trip to Zambia, on this RwandAir Review!

I’ve also included a few bonus Covid-19 Safe travel tips… So take out your notepads and pens and let’s get jiggy with it! 😀

 

A few months ago, my friend Neema and I traveled to Zambia with RwandAir. I’ve since been contemplating how to go about writing this RwandAir Review…

I acknowledge that recently a lot has changed, and the way we will travel in the future will probably look very different… Even so, I trust that eventually, the world will find its groove again. And the best we can do is to prepare for when that time comes… 🙂

So as we stay positively safe and maintain our social distance, it’s my hope that these tips will come in handy the next time you book a RwandAir flight.

 

RwandAir Review + Insider Tips For A Better Experience!

As of July 2019, RwandAir operates flights to 34 destinations, majority of which are in Africa.

If one of your dreams is to tour our beautiful continent of Africa affordably, then this RwandAir Review is for you! 😀

 

Research Is King… and Queen!

Before you book and pay for any flight, do lots of research and compare prices across multiple platforms!

Neema and I spent days scouring through Skyscanner, Trip Advisor, Jumia Travel and Google Trips comparing various offers & deals..

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Source: Cookie The Pom, Unsplash

 

Eventually we snagged a Kes. 33,000 return flight on Jumia Travel, which has since changed to Travel Start. This was quite the bargain, considering other flight carriers were charging nearly double!

Moreover, Jumia had the cheapest RwandAir offer compared to the other booking platforms. Hence comparing prices across different platforms can save you some coins! 😉

 

Find out what you are paying for, in advance…

While a ticket may be affordable, it helps to know what you are paying for in advance… Are there layovers or meals included? And what’s the baggage allocation?

Choosing RwandAir to Lusaka, meant at least 1 layover in Kigali, Rwanda. And a short, second stop in Entebbe, Uganda on the return trip.

Our ticket included meals and a free check-in for 2 bags of 23Kg each, on an Economy Class ticket. And if you are in Business Class, they allow 3 bags of 23Kgs each.

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Source: Emanuela Picone, Unsplash

 

Choose a Payment system that works for you…

It helps to have an assigned person making your booking and payment, especially when traveling in groups.

We had an easy time paying, as they accept MPESA, and they sent us a confirmation email with our flight itinerary soon after.

You can also take advantage of these other payment options: Visa, Master Card, Airtel Money and Credit card to pay for your RwandAir tickets.

 

Check-in Online & Arrive Early…

This wouldn’t be a RwandAir Review without stressing the importance of an online check-in. 😀

Their online check-in opens 24 hours before and closes at least 1 hour before departure time.

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That prior check-in saved me by my hairs on our travel day, as I’d underestimated the heavy evening traffic on my route! Thankfully, my brother managed to get me to the Airport in the nick of time!

We quickly checked in our bags and got our boarding passes from the ever-friendly RwandAir officials. 🙂

Our run through immigration went smoothly, and we made our way to the boarding terminal soon after…

 

Carry a fully-charged power bank

I genuinely love our Airport… Even so, my JKIA experiences continue to make this more of necessity than a preference. 🙂

If your devices need constant charging, you’ll need a power bank to survive JKIA…

We found ourselves at the much older, stuffy Terminal 1C without any functional charging ports… Hopefully they’ve since refurbished the terminal.

Still, I’d suggest carrying your power bank- just in case. 🙂

 

Smile and Enjoy Your Flight!

I was pleasantly surprised when our boarding call came right on time!

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The RwandAir flight attendants took us through the safety brief in English and French (I believe). Soon enough, we were watching the Nairobi city lights disappear from view.

Neema and I were in such great spirits, feeling pumped for our Zambia adventure! 😀

A short while later, the flight attendants came around serving light, tasty snacks.

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They have two in-flight magazines to cater to your shopping and entertainment needs…

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Our landing at the Kigali International Airport was smooth and well-timed. People went about the usual madness that happens soon as a plane lands… wrestling with luggage and standing impatiently, way before the door opens.

We opted to wait it out.. Suddenly, the Rwandan couple seated behind us bellied a bright and cheery: ‘Welcome to Rwanda’, much to our delight! 😀

We couldn’t help returning their enthusiasm, although we’d be in Kigali for an hour or less… On learning that we were in transit, they wished us a good trip, calling for us to visit again!

 

Pay Attention To The Signs…

It might seem pretty obvious, but this one is especially important for connecting flights/layovers and if you’re traveling at night… Stay alert and look out for the signs directing you to the right terminals’ gates.

At the Airport, it happened that majority of our fellow passengers were disembarking in Kigali…

Like sheep in a herd and probably half-awake, we found ourselves going down the escalators to the ‘Arrivals area’, thus completely missing the ‘Connecting flights’ sign.

Thankfully we quickly realized our mistake and went back up, laughing at ourselves, thus earning a few odd stares here and there. 😀

 

Always Go For The Chicken!

We then went through another round of passport and security checks.

You can always count on the Rwandan security officials to put a smile on your face… One was completely ‘certain’ that I am Rwandan and should stay, in spite of my very legit Kenyan passport! This made for another good laugh! 😀

The 1 hour layover slipped right by, and once again our flight boarding was smack on time!

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With a 2:2 configuration, the plane was much smaller and a little cramped this time. But the warm RwandAir hospitality made up for it. 🙂

On this flight, they served us a proper meal for dinner… I went for the beef, while Neema ordered chicken. After tasting each, we both agreed that on RwandAir, chicken is always a good idea! It’s tastier and way more interesting to the palate!

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Despite heavy turbulence and the noisy plane, we had a good flight, falling asleep through most of it. We landed at the Kenneth Kaunda International Airport in Lusaka, safe & sound.

Overall, our RwandAir experience from Kenya to Zambia was fantastic! 😀

 

More RwandAir Tips from Our Return Trip!

Our RwandAir return trips turned out a little more hectic than anticipated… Here are a few travel tips we learned through the experience.

 

  • Sometime during the trip, we had to make changes to our flight details… It usually costs around 100 USD to change flight timings/dates.  However, this may have changed in light of Covid-19.
  • Confirm with RwandAir for more updated details on flight-changing costs.
  • It costs about 7 USD (100 Kwacha) to get your bag wrapped at the airport in Lusaka.
  • On the return trip, we experienced crazy flight delays due to bad weather. Find out in advance what would happen if you miss your connecting flights.
  • Choose the return trip wisely, and find out whether meals are included particularly on flights with a stopover in Kampala, Uganda.
  • Consider carrying snacks in your carry-on, in case of unexpected flight delays, hence a longer stay at the Airport.
  • Ensure you have a valid Yellow Fever card.
  • Carry and wear something warm, as it gets cold on the plane and at the Airport at night.

 

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Covid-19 Specific Travel Tips

All RwandAir flights are currently suspended due to the Covid-19 Pandemic. Rwanda has recently opened up their International air space for chartered flights.

  • Find out in advance whether you’ll need to quarantine on arrival, as well as the cost-implications.
  • Read this post on Staying Healthy While Traveling In 2020
  • Find out whether you’ll be required to undergo COVID-19 testing at your chosen destination.
  • Carry extra wipes to wipe down the surfaces on the plane with sanitizer.
  • Practice social distancing and safe hands through frequent sanitizing or hand-washing, and wear a mask in public.

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Thank you for reading! 😀 I hope you found this RwandAir Review useful!

I’d love to hear from you! Leave your questions/comments/feedback on the comments’ section down below! 😀

 

<< Stay. Inspired. Always >>

 

 

 

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8 Comments

  • Reply
    Sasha
    August 14, 2020 at 8:18 am

    Will be planning my trips across Africa now with all these tips… Thanks!

    • Reply
      Scrapbook Journeys
      August 18, 2020 at 7:22 am

      My pleasure to share Sasha! Thank you for reading, and safe travels! 😀

  • Reply
    Ule Msee Wa B4
    July 3, 2020 at 7:26 am

    Next trip to Rwanda will be of course aboard Rwanda Air . Thanks to the advice on keeping safe amidst the pandemic situation.

    • Reply
      Scrapbook Journeys
      July 21, 2020 at 11:39 am

      Aaaye! That’s the spirit!! 😀 And yes,above all, we still keep safe. 🙂

  • Reply
    PATRICIA
    July 2, 2020 at 8:14 pm

    Thanx Marx for the great tips keep going gal id love to visit Zambia one day

    • Reply
      Scrapbook Journeys
      July 21, 2020 at 11:38 am

      Aw you’re welcome sis! 😀 And I can’t wait for you to visit- you’ll love it! 😀

  • Reply
    Stom Wabuko
    July 2, 2020 at 10:21 am

    This is so timely. Thanks a bunch

  • Leave a Reply