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Air France - opinions, experiences wanted!!

Air France - opinions, experiences wanted!!

Sep 11th, 2000, 12:16 PM
  #1  
Clea
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Air France - opinions, experiences wanted!!

I will be flying Air France from Houston to Paris and then to Lisbon in a couple of weeks. As I have never flown them before, I am curious to hear about any experiences other travelers have had with them. I seem to remember seeing a couple of related remarks on this forum but I haven't found much with a search. Any comments will be appreciated!
 
Sep 11th, 2000, 12:27 PM
  #2  
richardab
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I have used Air France, Virgin Atlantic, United, British and Lufthansa on flights to Europe. Although I am very dedicated to United, I think that Air France is the best. They have a certain style. Of course I flew in Business Class and the food and wine was amazing rivaling any food served in a French Restaurant.

I can only assume that you will be trteated with some sort of humanity in Coach too!

Check out www.deja.com and navigate your way to their travel section and look for 'airlines'. Here you will find many comments about Air France and other airlines.

P.S. I forgot, I've also used Air New Zealand on their London-Los Angeles route and I think they are also great!
 
Sep 11th, 2000, 01:05 PM
  #3  
Paul
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Actually flew round trip Paris-Lisbon last year on Air France (coach). Very good flights and the personnel were fine. Mind you this was not a long flight but there were no problems at all. Good luck.
 
Sep 11th, 2000, 04:42 PM
  #4  
ek
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flew it this summmer: about avg, small seats, lousy food, pleasant staff, a bit disorganized, didnt leave on time.
 
Sep 11th, 2000, 04:52 PM
  #5  
tom
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Last month, flew LA to Athens via Paris, with Air France. Overall, seemed pretty decent.

On the return flight (747) they were overbooked apparently, and upgraded us free to 1st class- was VERY nice indeed!!! Oddly, it seemed mostly Americans they upgraded, & few French (not that I'm complaining!).

Even on coach, seat pitch seemed OK. I'm 5'11", and could easily fit width of my hand, between my knees & seat in front of me.

Air France's check-ins though, were excruciatingly slow & inefficient at all stops. Inexplicably, the line would often stop - gridlock - for 10 minutes at a time, while the agents putzed & noodled with their computers, kept looking over & over at tickets, etc. This happened with quite a few passengers.

Southwest Airline efficiency, they are not.

Regarding carry-on baggage, they were reasonable. They have a 10 kg weight limit, but it wasn't checked. If the bag looked about right, they let you carry it on without measuring its size or weight. Plus, you can carry-on an additional "briefcase".

This was a relief, as I was expecting to have to do battle over a camera bag, especially after hearing what anal nit-picks the Brit Air people are.

You can also get Sky Miles for Delta, whom I use on demestic travel.

I would probably fly Air France again.
 
Sep 11th, 2000, 07:51 PM
  #6  
Caitlin
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Flew AF NY-CDG this spring and agree with the poster who said small seats (but not atypically small), lousy food, pleasant staff, never left on time. You can get Continental miles through AF, too.
 
Sep 11th, 2000, 10:52 PM
  #7  
George
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I've flown AF on 3 or 4 occasions, only once long haul (6.5 hours Lagos - Paris) and always in coach. Sometimes the seats aren't the biggest but that depends on the plane - the same will be true of any other airline. I found the food and service to be very good and if you are a few pounds over your luggage allowance, they won't mind too much unless the plane is completely full.
 
Sep 20th, 2000, 05:38 AM
  #8  
Bob Brown
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I just returned from Europe, Tuesday night in fact. We flew Air France from Atlanta to CDG and then back from Vienna via CDG, arriving in Atlanta about 7:30 PM
The flight from Atlanta to cDG and back was on a Boeing 777. Unfortunately, AF is like all the other airlines.
Seating in cattle class is very tight for a man of my height and size, which is only 6' 1", and 180 pounds. (Pity the poor people who are 3 or more 4 inches taller than I am, of which there are many.) When the person in front of me reclined the seat fully, I was most uncomfortable. I rode a good part or the way standing in the alley way near the galley and restrooms because I was so pained. Whey AF could not have put in one less row in each of the 2 cattle car sections and given us all an extra inch of leg room is beyond me.
I think I would gladly pay the $20 or 25 extra needed for them to derive the same gross income from the sale of the seats.
The Airbus A320 I had from Vienna to CDG was fine; ample leg room in tourist class. I will not be anxious to fly AF again to Paris on the B777 for the reasons listed above, but Delta is just as bad or even worse. KLM is a good airline, but it only flies to Amsterdam to my knowledge from the States.
The food in cattle class was mediocre at best. I had something the menu said was turkey. I did not eat it; after the first two bites I decided that if was Turkey, it was the gizzard!!. My wife had a tortellini dish. It was poor also -- dried out and tasteless.
The final snack, served about an hour and a half before landing was roast beef. It was ok. The desserts were also ok.
I think that competition and the urge to maximize revenue have led all airlines to create seating conditions in cattle class that stop just short of causing open passenger rebellion. As a result, all international flights seem to be reduced to being virtual clones of each other. Unless you have some sugar daddy to pay the bill to fly business or first class, the situation skates on the edge of uncomfortable and sometimes crosses over if something goes the least bit wrong. The crew members on AF flights seem to do their best under the circumstances, but they are limited by the physical circumstances.
The biggest bummer on the whole trip was going through customs and immigration control in Atlanta. Actually, it is the security system/baggage system there that is my biggest complain. Baggage handling is carried out by a surly lot.
After the polite, efficient European methods and people , our own incompetencies hit me smack in the face.
 
Sep 20th, 2000, 06:43 AM
  #9  
love2trvl
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Hi Clea:
I have traveled on Air France twice to Paris. The first time I flew on it, I swore it would my last, middle of the four seater...but I had wonderful seat mates and the service was terrific. I was in Paris in 6 hours so before I knew it I was there. I did pick my seats out for the return trip before leaving the US so no surprises coming home. The next experience was even better the food was not so bad, the staff again was terrific and all the red wine I could want!!! My luggage made it, we left on time and I would definitely fly them again. The only thing I find strange is the way they board the plane in CDG. Just announce you are boarding and everyone gets on. There is no such thing as row by row. But it did not seem to impede anything and everyone seemed OK about it. Coach seats seem to be the same no matter which Airline you fly. Enjoy yourself!!
 
Sep 21st, 2000, 04:52 AM
  #10  
Kim
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I flew AF a few years ago from JFK-CDG r/t on a 747. My only other transatlantic route was on United (awful). I thought AF was much better than United- the food was good, free drinks in coach (they also left out the drink cart to help yourself after dinner). Of course the seats didn't have a lot of room, but that's the way it is no matter what airline you fly. Also, my bags arrived in Paris and NYC without incident. I would fly them again. Have a good trip!
 
Sep 22nd, 2000, 02:28 AM
  #11  
love2trvl
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I brought this up for Steph. I hope it helps!
 
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