Lufthansa, Air France or Delta to Europe

Old Jan 10th, 2001, 11:59 AM
  #1  
XX
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Lufthansa, Air France or Delta to Europe

Hello fellow travelers. I will be buying aticket soon on either Lufthansa, Air France or Delta to Italy. Lufthansa is the cheapest and Delta is the most expensive ($100 pp more than Lufthansa), but Delta offers a direct flight. From reading past posts it sounds like Air France has the best food.

Which carrier is best (comfortable planes, reliability, and on-time arrivals are the most important criteria). We will be flying over the weekend, and I think the Lufthansa planes are 747's and the Air France planes are either 747's or 777's. Delta, I beieve, has 767's.
 
Old Jan 10th, 2001, 12:15 PM
  #2  
Lee
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"XX", They all have their problems. I try to avoid Northwest as I've had the worst luck with them. I typically fly US Airways or American, but have used Lufthansa, Delta, TWA, United, Alaskan, Continental, Czech Airlines and Southwest.

Some of who we choose is price, it may depend on flights and on destinations, times, departure cities and dates. We typically use US Airways as our origin cities are Pittsburgh, Buffalo or Cleveland. We can get a direct flight from Pittsburgh to many European cities nonstop and that is a plus.

I accumulate a lot of FF miles on US Airways and that's part of it, also.

I prefer US Airways using 767's and A319's as they are smaller and more comfortable. When you travel economy on a 747 and sit in the rear of the aircraft, you might as well take a nap when you land as it will be 30 minutes before you get off that plane. It takes 45 minutes to get everyone seated before departure!

As far as reliability, they are all pretty much the same. Flying is relatively safe unless you get into some bizarre weather.

I didn't see your departure city and that may limit you, also.
 
Old Jan 10th, 2001, 12:28 PM
  #3  
Jerald
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TThere are a lot of variables involved. Your size, your taste etc. We just returned from Paris on Air France 747. I'm a big guy & I was cramped. The food was OK & I feel as though the Flight attendants were intimidated by the American passengers. They spoke english but their vocabulary & comprehension was lacking. I normally fly American Airlines for their warm friendly staff, but I'm beginning to hate the cramped 767. I have not had the luck to get one of their new roomier coach seats, but next trip I plan to research the AC & if possible go back to AA.
 
Old Jan 10th, 2001, 12:35 PM
  #4  
Burta
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I flew Air France to Paris recently and at least in first class the food was the best I've had. The flight attendants seemed to leave passengers alone more than on other airlines, perhaps because, as a previous poster noted, they are intimidated by Americans. But the Air France flights I've taken to Europe have always been very pleasant.
 
Old Jan 10th, 2001, 01:09 PM
  #5  
s.fowler
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They are all fine safety-wise.
The food in my experience on Lufthansa is excreble. And the flight attendants are pretty stern.
I have to laugh. You *really* think the AF flight attendants are INTIMIDATED? Ha! They are being very French and snooty -- we're the dregs of the earth as far as they are concerned... well maybe after the English and the German. Talk about an ethno-centric misreading! I speak enough French to get decent service out of them, but I avoid them because they aren't on my FF plan and Paris airport is subject to work slowdowns of various sorts on too regular a basis for me to be willing. plus they lost 4 of my students this summer for about 6 hours! [To be fair there was an air traffic "thing", plus downed computers. You shoulda seen me at the AF counter in Budapest. "Je m'excuse. J'ai perdu quatre etudiants." They tried, but a computer that is down is down.] And lost their luggage for 12 hours. Twice. At this point AF would have to pay ME.
 
Old Jan 10th, 2001, 01:31 PM
  #6  
elvira
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Avoid Lufthansa at all costs. Do a search on this forum if you want real horror stories.
Don't choose a flight based on the food, unless you're flying Singapore Airlines.
There are no comfortable coach class seats; even the bulkhead or exit row seats are squished (side to side, but at least you have leg room).
You have two ways to look at it: if you have a stop and change of planes, you can get off, stretch, use a non-moving bathroom, eat something recognizable. The downside is you could miss the plane if your inbound is late (or your checked luggage misses the plane), or, the outbound could be delayed for hours or even cancelled, leaving you in a strange un-fun city overnight. If you take the direct flight (my preference), you can always go back to your own house if it's cancelled or delayed; the downside is you are trapped in a flying cigar tube for hours with no escape, and food that can only be described as "from the planet Earth".
 
Old Jan 10th, 2001, 02:20 PM
  #7  
Mike Murphy
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Connecting flights follow Murphy's 1st Law, and are a great marketing point for airline clubs.

For any long flight, my preference is for a non-stop. There's something about flying for 6-7 hours, then walking for what seems to be miles only to wait for what seems to be hours for that connecting flight.

 
Old Jan 10th, 2001, 03:37 PM
  #8  
Linda
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From the people I have talked with, US carriers are not the best for overseas flights. Unlike Elvira, one of my best experiences was with Lufthansa--good food and often. British Airways was next, then Icelandic and Sabena. I have not traveled with Air France. Direct flights are usually the best but you have to decide on money, layover time, etc.
 
Old Jan 10th, 2001, 03:57 PM
  #9  
Nano
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I find it very interesting that food is one of the main criteria some people use to choose an airline. At least in the U.S., I just assume the food will be horrid and I don't look forward to that aspect of the trip. I look forward to the food I will eat when I GET to where I'm going. This is not a criticism at all, just an observation.
 
Old Jan 10th, 2001, 06:25 PM
  #10  
s.fowler
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Well -- when you are trapped in a silver cigar hurtling through space -- eating and drinking is about all that's left other than figuring out how to meet your basic needs in those so-called "toilets". And read carefully. We're commenting as much about the quality of the cabin crews.
 
Old Jan 10th, 2001, 06:36 PM
  #11  
Rex
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There is a camp of people that believe you will have less jet lag if you fast from sun-up on the day of departure until you see the sun rise as you approach your European destination. So there's one (more?) reason NOT to make your decision based on food expectations. I try this some of the time (other times it seems too anti-social) - - ask them to hold back a "dinner" and serve it to you at the same time as the (snack) "breakfast". It will be cold - - but what the heck, it wasn't gourmet to start with.

I base my decision on price first, non-stop second, and if non-stop is not a choice, better to have a stop on this side of the Atlantic then the other when you have a choice (in other words, better PHL-NYC-VCE than PHL-LON-VCE, just as one example). I hate trudging through a European airport when my body wants to be sleeping.

By this principle, Lufthansa and Air France would be second and third choice for you (to ITALY), in my opinion.
 
Old Jan 11th, 2001, 08:00 AM
  #12  
elvira
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Unlike Rex, I opt for the change of planes in Europe, rather than in the U.S. If my inbound flight to JFK is late (say 9:30pm), guess what...no flights to Europe until the next day. Yippee - I get to stay in a cheap motel in New York. If I arrive in London or Frankfurt at 5pm, and miss my flight, I can take a train (tres difficile to do JFK>London), or even another plane (especially short hops like London>Paris or Frankfurt>Vienna, where many flights go out daily). If worse comes to worst, bummer, I have to stay overnight in London or Rome.
 
Old Jan 11th, 2001, 08:38 AM
  #13  
XX
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Thanks to all of you who posted responses. I purchased the ticket on Delta...it is a direct flight (i.e., I don't have to change planes in either the US or Europe) and the price difference was small. While I said that I was basing my decision on comfort, reliability and on-time arrival, I went with convenience. I am still concerned about Delta's reliability...I just read a thread about some flight getting cancelled on X-Mas day...I'm just hoping everything will be resolved soon.
 

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