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French Aviation Update

Sun Apr 25, 2004 1:40 pm

Out of curiosity, what is the situation like in France? I've seen over the years Air France swallow up Air Inter; Air Liberté, AOM and TAT go through one heck of a fiasco which none of them survived, and Air Littoral cease operations a couple of months ago. Does this mean Air France has a monopoly? How's Corsair doing? Is Aeropostale still around? Any LCCs in France? Any forecasts?


How do you say "12 months" in Estonian?
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RE: French Aviation Update

Sun Apr 25, 2004 3:29 pm

Yes, Air France has a monopoly and is buying KLM and Alitalia because it is thriving on its domestic market. Is it a well-run company? Yes and no. I don't know much but what I understood from a book I read was that it was close to bankruptcy in 1994. Then Christian Blanc became CEO and hired a US star consultant to give the company the hub structure and top notch yield management system that it lacked. The next step should have been privatization and the pilots agreed to "normalize" their situation which was much more favorable than other European pilots at the time.

Then the left took over and a communist became minister of transportation. No privatization anymore! Because of that, Christian Blanc resigned and Jean-Cyril Spinetta took over. Before the 1998 world cup, the pilots won back from Spinetta what they had given up to Christian Blanc during a strike threatening to ruin the event (standard and acclaimed practice in France).

Since then, the communist minister saw to it that all competition disappeared (Air Liberté got busted) to reinstate the former monopoly. At the time I remember reading that in the following 3 years, domestic fares went up 27%. Hence relatively good economic performance (in fantasy land=no real competition). Thanks to its financial strength, Air France is on a shopping spree. It has a good economic engine (thanks to the US consultant) but a lot of fat (excess personel, expensive pilots). Because of the monopoly it is doing fine.

Deregulation has never really occured in France (telecoms, energy, airlines). Because of that, national champions like Air France, France Telecom and EDF enjoy monopolies and are able to buy European rivals hurt by real competition.

[Edited 2004-04-25 08:31:49]
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RE: French Aviation Update

Sun Apr 25, 2004 6:13 pm

Air France monopoly : not totally!
I remind you that EasyJet operates 3 different destinations from ORLY and CDG : Nice, Marseille and Toulouse.
All the new airlines that want to operate flights in France focuse on this three main lines, ignoring the other ones!

Regarding international flights :
Volareweb to Italy (from ORLY) : Rome, Venise, Palerme, Milan, Catane, Bari, Cagliari & Bologne.
Easyjet (from Orly ) : Berlin, Naples, Barcelone, Genève, Milan
Easyjet (from CDG) : Dortmund, Liverpool, Luton, Belfast, Newcastle

There are other LCC operating flights from CDG (FlyBe, Germanwings...)

A lot of LCC operate flights to Nice and Marseille.

I volutarily ignored Ryanair because this airline do not serve Paris.

Regarding the Air France fares on domestic flights, it is not that difficult to find nice ones.
As two examples :
ORY - MPL - ORY : 148€ including all taxes (First leg on december, 23rd and return on december 27th)
CDG - MPL - CDG : 99€ including all taxes (First leg on april,1st and return on april, 5th)
For both flights, I took the first flight in the morning and the last in the evening so no loss of time.
Note : Half of the prices were taxes so the fares are not really expensive!
Flying is amazing!
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RE: French Aviation Update

Sun Apr 25, 2004 6:19 pm

Any FRENCH LCCs or no such thing?


How do you say "12 months" in Estonian?
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RE: French Aviation Update

Sun Apr 25, 2004 6:31 pm

Air Lib Express used to be a LCC...even if it was not made/managed like a LCC
Aéris Express used to be a LCC...same pb than Air Lib Exrpress
---> they're gone
Flyeco is a French lcc...well they've been around for a long time but never took off.
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RE: French Aviation Update

Sun Apr 25, 2004 6:41 pm

AOMlover, Thanks for the link!!!
But it is weird they advertize beginning operations spring 2004!!
i have a friend that works at Perpignan airport and he doesn't know about flights to Beauvais with FlyEco!
Flying is amazing!
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RE: French Aviation Update

Sun Apr 25, 2004 7:32 pm

A new LCC is to start operations soon using MD-83 and Fokker F28.
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RE: French Aviation Update

Sun Apr 25, 2004 7:34 pm

There are also some small regional airlines such as TwinJet (operating a few Beech1900). At least the one mentionend is doing quite well, reporting profits and expanding its route network.

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RE: French Aviation Update

Sun Apr 25, 2004 7:35 pm

Air Lib express and Aéris were LOW Fare airlines... not LOW COST which makes a huge difference as their costs of operations were so high thatt hose airlines were loosing money on each and every flights...even when their flights were full !  Nuts

LVZXV, France has also something special that no other country has in Europe : the TGV -High Speed Train -.... which makes the competition market very different.

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