SATA Azores Airlines A320 Economy Class Review

SATA Azores Airlines A320 Economy Class Review
SATA Azores Airlines A320 at Horta Airport

SATA Azores Airlines is a Portuguese airline based in Ponta Delgada. Given the location of the Azores Islands in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean, it’s little surprise that the airline is focused on flying between the Azores, mainland Europe and North America. The airline has a small fleet of Airbus A320s and A321s, and many of its flights operate between the larger islands of the Azores and mainland Portugal. Inter-island Dash 8 flights within the Azores are operated by SATA Air Açores.

I recently flew with SATA Azores Airlines on a domestic flight from the Portuguese capital of Lisbon to Horta, on the island of Faial. This review looks at the SATA Azores Airlines A320 Economy class experience…

Flight Details

Flight number S4 151
Route Lisbon (LIS) to Horta (HOR)
Aircraft type Airbus A320
Class of travel Economy
Seat number 2A
On-time performance The flight ran 20 minutes late
Star rating 3.5 stars out of 5

The route

S4151 route map

Flight Cost

I paid $82 to fly from Lisbon to Horta, and onwards to Ponta Delgada on a connecting SATA Air Açores flight. I thought this was a very reasonable price as all SATA tickets include 23kg of checked baggage. For the flight from Lisbon to Horta, snacks, drinks and seat selection were also included at no charge. (On the short hop from Horta to Ponta Delgada, no catering was provided and seats were not allocated.)

Airport Experience

There was no queue to check in at Lisbon and the airport staff were very friendly. There was a long queue for security and I didn’t have any lounge access, but Lisbon Airport is a pleasant enough place to wait around.

Boarding for this flight was via a remote bay, which meant a long bus ride to the aircraft.

SATA Azores Airlines A320 in Lisbon

The day before the flight, I received a notification from the airline that the flight was rescheduled and would depart 5 minutes earlier. Despite this, we left 15 minutes later than scheduled. There was no apparent reason for the delay as our aircraft had been parked overnight in Lisbon.

The Hard Product

The aircraft was an older Airbus A320 in an all-Economy configuration. The SATA Azores Airlines seats were comfortable and well-padded, and there was a normal amount of legroom.

SATA Azores Airlines A320 legroom
SATA Azores Airlines A320 legroom

On this aircraft, the seats with the most legroom were 1A-C & 2D-F (bulkhead seats) and the exit row seats.

There was no in-flight entertainment, other than drop-down overhead screens which displayed a moving map. Some passengers had an in-flight magazine in their seat pockets, but my seat didn’t have one.

The Soft Product

Considering the cost of my ticket, I was quite impressed that snacks and drinks were served to all passengers free of charge. Not many European airlines serve free food in Economy class on short-haul flights. Unfortunately, it wasn’t anything to get too excited about. We were served a rather boring, dry sandwich and some biscuits, along with a choice of cold drinks, tea and coffee.

Azores Airlines Economy class breakfast

The cabin crew did their job, but I honestly didn’t find them overly friendly. One of them chewed gum for much of the flight.

Not to worry… while most of the flight was over the Atlantic Ocean, I enjoyed some great views of the Azores Islands on our approach to Horta Airport.

Faial Island from the air
Faial Island from the air

This was the Horta township from the air:

Horta from the air

If you haven’t been to the Azores Islands, you should absolutely consider a trip once the travel restrictions are lifted. The history, beautiful nature, great surfing and laid-back lifestyle make for a great escape.

SATA Azores Airlines A320 Economy Class
3.5

Final thoughts

While the in-flight experience was not remarkable, SATA Azores Airlines provided a pleasant and reliable service for an affordable price.

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Matt Graham
The editor of Australian Frequent Flyer, Matt's passion for travel has taken him to over 60 countries… with the help of frequent flyer points, of course!
Matt's favourite destinations (so far) are Germany, Brazil, New Zealand & Kazakhstan. His interests include economics, aviation & foreign languages, and he has a soft spot for good food and red wine.

You can contact Matt at [email protected]

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