Johannesburg, South Africa

It’s quite a coincidence my earlier travel-related post was about Morocco and that I spent the last weekend watching Chappie (I’ll talk about the movie in a later post) because I found myself back in the continent again after my original flight got cancelled and my new route became Singapore – Johannesburg – Sao Paulo.

The cost of my original flight was roughly SG$1600 (That’s roughly US$1.1k) which is a really good price and of course I would jump at a chance to be rerouted to a Singapore Airlines flight if nothing else.

My new initial plan was to take the Gautrain out of the airport to Sandton, a short ride away so I could make it back in time for my 5 hour transit. My arrival time was a bit disadvantageous though – I’d arrive at 6am and I’d leave at 11, presumably when shops actually open so I was still a little torn about whether to leave the airport.

Thankfully for indecisive folk like me, the airport made our minds up. Before I knew it, I had my passport stamped for transit and I was in the waiting area for the next flight. Well, at least there are shops, right?

I tried to change US$10 to buy me a cup of coffee. The counter lady informs me that ‘the network is down’ which basically meant I can’t change money. Oh well, I wouldn’t be able to purchase train tickets.

Most of the shops in the terminal centered around a safari theme.

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I was told by a friend that I needed to get some biltong and droewors. I didn’t have money so that was out of the question.

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Most items at the airport were actually… cheap by my standards (which is saying a lot, I’ll elaborate in a future post). An espresso would set you back $1 and water and beer costs about the same. You’d expect airports to jack up the prices so I do wonder how much things cost in the mainland.

I flew South African Airlines from Johannesburg to Sao Paulo. Food is surprisingly good. I was expecting more exotic fare but it’s either that South Africans eat very similarly to Singaporeans or the airline wanted tastes that are more suitable for international palettes.

Fish with cream sauce and ‘curried rice’

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Pasta with beef something and stewed tomatoes and something something

Apparently, the region’s starting to get into wine production so there’s a couple of local wines that are offered on the flight. I didn’t get to try the white wines which is uncharacteristic I’d admit since I don’t really like red wine but these were really good. I liked how there’s a strong barrel taste even though the tiny inflight bottles were screw-capped.

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