Is Air France that bad?

Apr 24th, 2007, 08:39 AM
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 283
p.s. have definitely had the bus experience - last March we had to board a bus on the tarmac and were driving around for (no lie) 25 minutes until we got dropped off. We all started to joke that we were driving in circles, because that's what it felt like.
nycgirl1 is offline  
Apr 24th, 2007, 08:45 AM
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 24
I have flown with Air France twice and both times was very happy with the service and flight overall. I had a seat-back TV each time and when they overbooked my flight returning from Paris they provided me with overnight accomodations, food and 300Euros cash to compensate (who can complain about being paid to spend an extra night in Paris!). I would fly Air France any time over our national carrier Air Canada (worse food, service and movies guaranteed!).
talia_bl is offline  
Apr 24th, 2007, 09:36 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 2,874
Flew them LAX to CDG at Christmas. I thought the food was better than average, I liked how they passed out bread and there was lots of free wine.
Good choice of entertainment and the flight crew was friendly and helpful.
logandog is offline  
Apr 24th, 2007, 09:51 AM
Join Date: Jul 2005
Posts: 65
I flew with them once, from Casablanca to Paris. Nothing wrong with the flight. Flight attendants were very friendly. I can't comment on the nature of the food, as food wasn't served on that flight. (short flight)

I agree with the poster who drew the distinction between Air France and CDG airport. Most people have problems with the latter, rather than the former. What an illogical mess that place is. Although, I will say this: as ridiculous as the layout of that airport is, I encountered nothing but friendly airport employees. (Except for one security person who looked at me like I was crazy when I told her I only had a carry-on and no check in luggage. She hurried over to her colleague and the two of them began asking me questions, rapid fire. But actually, they weren't rude about it, mostly just curious)
Liquidsunshine is offline  
Apr 24th, 2007, 09:56 AM
Join Date: Jun 2003
Posts: 21,322
I have always found AF excellent, except for one point in economy class, which has arisen in recent times -- legroom. But I am 6'1" and I think that most people less than 6' wouldn't have a problem with it.
However, legroom varies from year to year (you wouldn't believe how often airlines reconfigure planes that you thought you knew by heart), so the problem might be fixed within 6 months or so.
kerouac is online now  
Apr 24th, 2007, 09:57 AM
Join Date: Sep 2003
Posts: 2,420
Search the internet and EVERY airline has the "I will NEVER fly them again" posts, threads, websites etc.

It's a hollow threat. Americans vote with thier wallet. That same person who posted "I will NEVER fly AirFrance again" will "Forget" that 99 times out a 100 when Air France is $100 cheaper LOL!
CarolA is offline  
Apr 24th, 2007, 10:10 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 13,461
I like Air France. They have recently changed the schedule to and from Boston, though, and the newer planes with the seatback TVs are only flying one of the two flights each day. When I get one of those, I like it because it shows French movies.

One pitfall to avoid if possible is the tight connections Air France schedules for many flights at CDG. If I can choose a longer connection time, I will do it. However, the OP is flying to Paris with no connection at CDG, and for those purposes I have always found the flight to be just fine.
Nikki is offline  
Apr 24th, 2007, 05:19 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 3,920
We have flown Air France over the last few years with no problems except for this past March. This year we flew an Air France 747 which was packed. There were no seat back screens. I think the aircraft had been refitted to get more seats into it because we had a window seat but no window. As Nikki mentioned they changed the schedule from Boston and the newer planes only fly once a day for a higher price. We will see how much the difference is and if it isn't too much we will take something other than their 747s. The best part of Air France for us is that at the end of that flight is Paris!
AGM_Cape_Cod is online now  
Apr 26th, 2007, 10:13 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 509
I've flown Air France 3 times, most recently 4 weeks ago.

Coach felt no different than coach to Europe on other carriers (AA, DL, BA). I would pick a flight based on price and schedule.

I've never been on an AF plane that has the individual screens. That would have been nice, especially since they did NOT show a movie on the way to CDG and on the way back (an 8+ hour flight), they only showed one movie.

Flight attendants were nice. Food was more than edible. Drink service was great.

3-4-3 configuration on the plane was cramped, and even though we travelled mid-week, low season, every single seat was taken. AF is able to schlep people long distances by connecting in CDG and connecting with its partners, so many people on the plane are making long connections.

My biggest gripe is that most of the flights to the US (including the one we were on to ATL, and the flights to Newark and Boston) depart from the remote E gates (E80) at CDG. Not only do these require an additional shuttle to get to at CDG, but they started boarding the flight really, really early because there isn't a planeside connection and you have to walk outside on the airport and climb the stairs to the plane. Besides the fact that you have to schlep your carry-on upstairs, we were on the plane for over an hour before the plane even moved from the gate. It's a long flight coming back to the US, without having to sit forever on the plane, but they cannot board any faster than what they are boarding.

Would I fly them again? Sure, if the price and schedule are the best.
Mariarosa is offline  
Apr 26th, 2007, 10:15 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 509
Oh, I forgot to mention that my only suitcase (a carry-on size that only weighted 9.8 kilos) did NOT make it on the flight. I could have carried it on board, but I checked it because with the liquid rules I would not have been able to bring back my vino. But this is not the only airline that has lost my luggage. Luggage was delivered 2 days later at my home.
Mariarosa is offline  
Apr 26th, 2007, 10:27 AM
Join Date: Jan 2007
Posts: 312
we flew back and forth from Chicago to Italy on Air France last month. Their food is not very good... they lost my friends luggage for 2 days but did offer a 100 USD for the inconvenience ( nice gesture ). On the return, my TV didn't work so my friend let me share hers, her headphones only worked in one ear, so we used mine, we got an amenity pak that had earplugs, so she got hers out and one was fine, but the other one looked circumcised, (I got out mine, I thought if anything there had to be at least one good one )so there we were with my head on her shoulders watching Dreamgirls..The flight attendant said I could switch seats to the middle of the plane, I declined having an aisle seat. Then dinner came and her packet of silverware had 2 knifes and 1 spoon. These are all things that made us laugh more, and these things could have happened on any airline so I would fly them again. But their food is nasty..and I am not that hard to please.
frugaltraveler is offline  
Apr 26th, 2007, 11:22 AM
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 8
I agree with RD, people may well be confusing Air France with the AWFUL handling at CDG Airport but since you'll likely be passing through there, I do think that you have to take that into consideration. I'll say this, I have vowed never to fly Air France again after being a regular flyer for several years. The reason? Out of 6 flights they manage to lose my luggage 5 times! 5 times!!!! I did eventually get it back each time, but that didn't help me the last time when I flew home to the US to attend my Grandfather's funeral (scheduled for the day after my arrival) and they lost my bag which contained the outfit I was supposed to wear. I had a major meltdown - shopping for clothes is that last thing you want to do when a loved one passes away. So that's when i decided that Air France and I would not be doing business again.
asm13 is offline  
Apr 26th, 2007, 11:50 AM
Join Date: Nov 2006
Posts: 1,277
I would not fly air france again under any circumstances. The most unhelpful, unco-operative, rude and unpleasant cabin crew and groundstaff that I have ever encountered.
LeighTravelClub is offline  
Apr 26th, 2007, 11:52 AM
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 1,023
I am flying AF in July and see that going over to Boston I am on a plane with the individual seatback screens (really and truly the ONLY thing I care about ) but coming back to Europe we don't have screens, only those little ones from the ceiling every 6 rows or so that you can't see. I suppose it's for the best. The time I flew home on Virgin I stayed awake the entire night watching movies on my individual DVD player and didn't get a wink of sleep!
beaupeep is offline  
Apr 26th, 2007, 04:29 PM
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 2,239
We flew Air France last June 2006 from SFO to CDG and really enjoyed it. Really. The flight attendants were pleasant and helpful and I thought they dealt well with some extremely rude passengers. We are fussy eaters but enjoyed our airline food in both directions. There were plenty of options as well as great snacks - you could not go hungry on this long flight! The only negative was the cramped legroom on this very full flight. No seatback tv sets but we prefer to read anyway and they did have on tv shows and a movie or 2 on the overhead TVs.
The bus thing from plane to gate at CDG was awful, but we experienced this in a worse way at Munich and 1 other airport - can't remember which - in Europe. We had a number of flights within Europe once there and did not care much for Alitalia or even Lufthansa. Air France was best and definitely better than any American airline we've used.
elnap29 is offline  
Apr 26th, 2007, 04:51 PM
Join Date: Feb 2004
Posts: 469
We've flown AF several times as well as other airlines across the Atlantic.

The flight crew was fine. It was the airport personnel we found less than customer friendly.

I always bring my own food.

Some aircraft are nicer than others.

If you get a good price and get to your destination safely, that's what really matters.

Bon Voyage.
suntravler is offline  
Apr 26th, 2007, 05:16 PM
Join Date: Jul 2003
Posts: 361
We've flown overseas a few times (Lufthansa/Air Canada/British Airways), but Air France was the only one to lose our luggage. They lost 2 out of 4 family members' bags. Not only did they lose them, but they were very unresponsive and uncooperative in attempting to locate/retrieve them. We were in Venice for 3 days prior to departing on a Mediterranean cruise with no luggage. If given a choice, I wouldn't fly Air France again.
Kiddo is offline  
Apr 26th, 2007, 05:23 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 4,247
Air France / Delta routing was the only one ever to lose my luggage in over 40 years of travel....but the luggage arrived before I did and the AF rep met us at the plane and delivered my early arriving bag!~

I do HATE the bus to plane with AF but with a Delta arrival it's the same thing..I can taxi into Paris in less time.

jody is offline  
Apr 26th, 2007, 06:36 PM
Join Date: Mar 2006
Posts: 192
We flew on Air France from Paris two weeks ago. We were supposed to leave at 1:30 on Friday the 13th. Our plane was broken, so they replaced it with a smaller one and had to bump several of us. We ended up having to spend the night at the Holiday Inn Express in Roissy. Of course, they paid for lunch, dinner and breakfast and the hotel. We didn't have our luggage. They gave us each 600 euros. When I saw $1628 credit posted on my Visa, it made me feel a little better. Once we were actually on the plane, it wasn't that bad. The seat next to us was empty, so we were able to spread out a little. There were nice screens on the seat backs, and I watched Dreamgirls, The Holiday, and Bobby. The flight crew was very nice. Our luggage arrived home the same time we did, which I considered a miracle since I hadn't seen it since Friday morning!
Brockbank is offline  
Apr 26th, 2007, 07:02 PM
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 7,925
I've flown SFO to Paris several times on AF but always in business which was fine.

I *particularly* like the quiet of the cabin -- the pilot comes on at the beginning and at the end. The flight attendants are soft spoken. There is no WE WILL BE COMING THROUGH WITH THE TAX FREE CART announcement repeated in a loud twang several times, and always when you might be drifting off for a few minutes.

Food -- OK. Service--competent. HOWEVER, when the DH asked phone, ground, and air crews about connecting his CPAP machine (so he could sleep) they refused, despite having the available outlet for power. They could easily have complied but just didn't want to onsider or deal with it.
annw is online now  

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