Posted on May 4, 2014

FLYNAS the worst of two

For people in Saudi Arabia there are only two options when it comes to domestic air travel. With only two airlines currently permitted to work in the Kingdom your options are very limited. The larger more
established national SAUDI ARABIAN AIRLINES and the recently established smaller low-cost airline FLYNAS.
The two airlines are native to Saudi Arabia and offer flights both domestically and internationally. They are also both speckled with their fair share of problems. But one comes far above the other when discussing utter disappointment.
Flynas is by far the winner when it comes to the airline that offers nothing but nothing….
Let me break down all the areas in which FLYNAS has achieved to be the worst airlines in Saudi Arabia and ever.

Flynas markets itself as the low-cost airlines of Saudi Arabia. However, with their prices not being fixed there are very limited seats available at the “low cost” fares and the majority of seats are priced similar to that of SAUDIA and believe it or not even more.
There are three price classes available with the lowest class price offering nothing but the seat (no baggage, seat selection and/or meal)  and that at times isn’t much cheaper than the competitors. Also the low prices are often for flights at unfavourable times and must be booked weeks in advance.
They really do try to squeeze the profit, and by this I mean on the domestic aircrafts there are two classes; business and economy. Business class is made of 2×2-seat rows and is divided from the economy section by a flimsy green linen curtain. There about 2-6 seats for business, the seats in business are nothing to swoon over they are fairly larger than the economy seats and offer a bit more leg room.
As for the economy section which is a complete joke. The economy sections make up 90% of the seats on the plane and are arranged in 2 rows of 3 seats each with a very narrow aisle between them. The
seats are where I have the biggest issue; legroom is non-existent. If you are person of height 5’9 or taller the seat is unbearably uncomfortable.Your knees will be sore and your legs cramped your entire journey.
As for seat size, it is a misfortunate to anybody that carries excessive weight or is of a larger build, I can imagine the discomfort they may feel in the very narrow seats.
Flight Delays 
The airline is infamously synonymous with flight delays. It is so common that it is expected. I have flown with the airlines twice and both trips included delays. The biggest problem with the delay is
their unwavering tendency to notify passengers after the expected boarding time. Leaving many passengers in a rage of anger, waiting idle at the airport.
Customer Service 
I haven’t ever heard the phrase “I don’t know” as confidently as it is bespoken by FLYNAS employees. There needs to be a huge improvement in customer interaction and training in customer service. Employees are rude and unsympathetic to the stranded customers making it visible that they have no regard for the inconveniences that may occur in the wake of the flight delays/cancellation. A mere please, sorry and thank you goes a long way.

Baggage fees and waits times 
What many don’t know is that there is a two-tier system in the airlines here in Saudi Arabia. FLYNAS is second-tier to SAUDIA,which helps explain the ridiculous wait times. Yes, if both airlines are scheduled at the same time then once SAUDIA has completed only than can FLYNAS proceed. This is the reason why most flight departures and arrivals for FLYNAS are half past the hour whereby SAUDIA offers flights on the hour.

The biggest issue here is that if both flights arrive at the airport at the same time or relatively close by then you (FLYNAS) wait. Yes you wait to exit the aircraft; you wait even longer to collect your baggage (I once waited 1hr 15mins). Once the SAUDIA flight has been dealt with then your flight will be attended to.
Is FLYNAS a complete nightmare? Yes. However in a country as large as Saudi Arabia and with very limited transportation (especially for women) it is a means. I suggest this airline if it is a last resort and just that, you may save a few riyals but I guarantee you it is nothing that would warrant the ill experience and the risk of disappointment associated with FLYNAS.


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