Review: BRA Economy Class Avro 100 Gothenburg To Stockholm Bromma

Last week I took my second ever flight on Sweden-based BRA. I know, the name is ridiculous. Bra means “good” in Swedish, so get your minds out of the gutter. Last week I was in Stockholm several times surrounding my TV-debut and decided to take the trip up to Bromma, which is far more convenient than Stockholm’s major airport, Arlanda.

BRA operates a series of domestic routes in Sweden, and select seasonal international services. It’s no secret that I find SAS sub-par, so the options I’m left with are BRA and Norwegian.

All the airlines listed above offer youth fares. On SAS, the price rarely changes, while Norwegian has variable youth pricing. With BRA, I bought this one way ticket for 590 SEK ($67), which included a checked bag. On SAS flying to Arlanda, the price was 455 SEK ($52). Given the greater distance to the city center from ARN, I went with BRA.

FlygBRA 23
Gothenburg (GOT) – Stockholm (BMA)
Friday, June 16
Depart: 2:00PM
Arrive: 3:00PM
Duration: 1hr
Aircraft: BAE Aerospace Avro RJ100
Seat: 4A (Economy Class)

I arrived at the airport 45 minutes before my flight. Security was longer than usual, and I arrived at the gate approximately 15 minutes later. I expected boarding to start almost immediately, but we weren’t called until 14 minutes prior to departure.

BRA Avro 100 in Gothenburg.

Is it just me or does the Avro 100 kind of look like a rat from the front?

BRA is one of the last airlines I know of that still don’t offer seat selection. Instead, they go with a retro-Ryanair style “fight for the best seat” model. Luckily, there were only around 30 passengers on my flight, so seating wasn’t an issue.

Do you notice anything different about this Avro cabin? It’s in a 3-3 configuration! That’s a dramatic and notable difference from the standard 2-3 configuration on this plane.

The seatback was quite standard, though I’m surprised they still use such bulky seats.

The pitch was 30 inches.

The pilot came on the PA and announced our flight time would be 40 minutes. Interestingly, all announcements, including the safety demo, where only in Swedish.

My wing-view from seat 4A.

Our takeoff was uneventful and we were off in no time. The literature pocket contained a safety card and inflight magazine, which was also only in Swedish.

Only five minutes after takeoff the in-flight service commenced. The drink options were coffee, tea, or water. You also get a free snack onboard. This time they served apple slices, but I remember being impressed that they served a nice dessert on my previous flight.

BRA in-flight snack.

This was followed by a high-quality hot towel! Talk about rare for a 40-minute domestic flight in economy.

The bathrooms were very old-fashioned, which was fun…

Unfortunately BRA doesn’t offer wifi onboard, but I’m hoping they’ll install it on their upcoming C-Series aircraft.

Before I knew it, we were descending toward Stockholm. On final, our angle of approach was probably the steepest I’ve ever experienced!

Steep approach into Bromma Airport.

We touched down 10 minutes ahead of schedule and taxied to our gate. Bromma Airport is incredibly strange, with long outdoor walkways from some aircraft to the terminal.

I bid farewell to the crew, expecting to be landside within five minutes.

The walk was so long it took at least 10, and I ended up having to take a later bus into Stockholm city center (which takes 30 minutes).

I wondered if I could jump on this flight since no one was checking boarding passes after this point?

And the walk continued…

Bottom Line

Overall, BRA is probably the best option for flying domestically in Sweden. They offer a slightly more premium service than SAS and Norwegian, together with short boarding times. The cabin is definitely on the dense side and these Avros have seen better days, but I’d fly them again given the chance.

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Comments

  1. As a native Swedish speaker I am particularly struck by the poor choice of name for this airline. “Bra” means “good”, but really more like “passable” or “acceptable”, not “great”. It is a modest word which I suppose works in the understated Swedish culture, but falls far short of establishing a brand for future international growth – if that is ever ownership’s intention

  2. Great review Daniel. I am fascinated by Sweden and would love to travel around Sweden one day.

  3. “Overall, BRA is probably the best option for flying domestically in Sweden. They offer a slightly more premium service than SAS and Norwegian”

    I don’t get it. Because they give you a cup of water and three tiny Apple slices?

    For that you have to fly on a 20 year old plane with god knows how slim seats? (the 2-3 Avro’s on Swiss are 17″ wide. God knows what the 3-3 on BRA are)

  4. “FlygBRA 23
    Gothenburg (GOT) – Stockholm (ARN)”
    I suppose Bromma Airport doesn’t have the same code as Arlanda, does it?

  5. You list “FlygBRA 23 Gothenburg (GOT) – Stockholm (ARN)”, which should be BMA (Bromma).

    The seats are not 30″ pitch, not sure where you got that from.

    Also BMA may be closer but not sure its more convenient when you can get the Arlanda Express in 20 mins, compared to 30 mins by bus which is less frequent.

    Finally don’t understand how BRA is a ‘more premium service’ in comparison to SAS and Norwegian…

  6. It’s been 25 years since I’ve been there but Bromma was not incredibly convenient to town. Other than a nearby tram you need a bus either into town or to a subway station. Even though ARN is further away it’s quicker to town…

  7. @CalStanford there are several aspects I consider more premium. Firstly, you get a snack and hot towel. All their tickets include checked bags too. Additionally, I appreciate the short check-in and boarding times, which obviously cater to business people.

  8. I fly BRA a lot, but the one problem with BRA is that their hub is Bromma. Bromma has 8 gates sharing the same waiting area, and more often than not the waiting area is completely packed, with no room to stand. It is a miserable airport to depart from

  9. Interesting review of an airline I’ve honestly never heard of.

    One point to note though – Ryanair no longer has a ‘fight for the best seat’ model. All allocated seating before you board (unless they’ve ovverbooked of course)!

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