This post is part of a series documenting our trip to the French Polynesia.
Are you considering a place for your honeymoon or even just a romantic getaway? Look no further than Bora Bora and Moorea.
When you are starting to look at booking your flights to Bora Bora the prices may very well scare you. Unfortunately you will probably only see a few different options if you want to travel to Bora Bora. First off, unless you get a direct flight to Bora Bora, you will need to fly to Papeete, Tahiti first. Unless you plan to rent out your own private jet, there are few airlines that will fly you out to this tropical island. Most people we met over there seemed to have flown either Air Tahiti Nui, Air France or Hawaiian Airlines.
For this trip to the French Polynesia, our travel agent recommended Air Tahiti Nui to us based upon our honeymoon budget. Like mentioned before, even if you’re looking to just fly economy class, prices aren’t cheap.
Our travel agent decided to have us flying Air Tahiti Nui from LAX to Papeete, Tahiti and then a ferry from Tahiti to Moorea the next morning. After 4 beautiful nights at the Sofitel in Moorea, the itinerary had us flying from Moorea to Bora Bora in the Air Tahiti ATR aircraft (more on the later).
LAX to Papeete, Tahiti
After reserving our parking spot online for Los Angeles’ Park ‘N Fly for $17 per day, we were on our way to the less than adequate experience at LAX. After flying domestically the past few years, I’ve grown accustomed to my quick trips to John Wayne Airport in Santa Ana and Long Beach. Despite the constant traffic in Los Angeles and LAX, the airport needless to say was a cluster.
Upon arrival at the airport, we headed over to the international terminal and waited in the short line for the Air Tahiti Nui airline. The front desk was quick and friendly, but unfortunately charged us $75 additional for my wife’s overweight luggage.
After a short delay at LAX, we were boarded onto the honeymoon of our dreams.
The Air Tahiti Nui Economy Class Experience
Once we boarded Air Tahiti Nui’s economy class however, we were presented with the typical airline sleep mask, green comfy socks, earplugs, headphones, a mediocre pillow and a blanket. The airline staff then proceeded to walk around to give each flyer a flower with a hint of vanilla.
Unlike other reviews I read about the condition of the Air Tahiti Nui planes, we seemed to enjoy the planes very much. The seats were fairly comfortable, had a decent amount of legroom (I’m 6’4″) and had in-flight entertainment to help us get through the 8.5 hour long flight. It’s hard to complain though when you’re on your way to paradise.
During the flight itself, the airline staff would come around, make jokes with us and keep a friendly tone. The in-flight entertainment had a wide selection ranging from music, movies, online magazines and information about Tahiti. On the way there, I watched the film Never Lose Focus with Will Smith and Margot Robbie and my wife watched Aloha with Bradley Cooper, Rachel McAdams, John Krasinski and Emma Stone.
Despite all of the positives with our experience with Air Tahiti Nui, the food wasn’t up to par. While it’s hard to expect a five-star gourmet from any economy class, we weren’t pleased with the food selections.
Tahiti Island Hopping
While you can take a ferry between the different islands, we recommend just going with Air Tahiti Nui’s ATR aircraft. Most likely you will end up flying on the Air Tahiti Nui ATR aircraft (as seen below). The flights are relatively short depending on which island you fly to and they even managed to serve juice during our flight from Bora Bora to Tahiti. For someone who doesn’t love flying though, the ATR flights aren’t for the faint of heart. The ride can experience turbulence and foul smells from the bathroom area. We recommend sitting closer to the front of the plane, unless you’re on a rush to get off of the plane upon arrival.