HB-IWC
Topic Author
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Joined: Fri Sep 22, 2000 1:09 am

AF To Give Up Nonstop Vietnam Flights

Tue Dec 28, 2004 10:18 pm

With the start of the summer 2005 operations, Air France will give up its recently launched nonstop links to the Vietnamese cities of Hanoi (HAN) and Ho Chi Minh (SGN) in favor of a return to a direct connection passing through Bangkok.

Air France currently operates thrice weekly nonstop A343 service between CDG and SGN and codeshares on Vietnam Airlines' four weekly B772 nonstops. The capital city of Hanoi is currently served twice weekly by AF, nonstop with A343, and three times by its codeshare partner VN with B772.

For the summer of 2005, Air France has planned to return to its previous regimen of serving both cities via Bangkok. Thus, SGN will be served 4 times weekly and HAN will receive 3 weekly flights from Paris via Bangkok. All flights are to be operated by A343. The VN-code share flights are not currently programmed, and it is unclear whether they are to continue.

I guess that AF's nonstop experiment to Vietnam failed because of low yields. What is surprising, however, is that, with the return of the direct flights via Bangkok, service the latter will effectively be downgraded from a daily dedicated terminator service to a daily flight to be shared with another station. It is surprising that AF does not operate larger equipment into BKK instead, as many other European airlines outstrip AF in capacity and/or frequency at BKK.

 
junior1970
Posts: 153
Joined: Wed Dec 22, 2004 5:07 am

RE: AF To Give Up Nonstop Vietnam Flights

Tue Dec 28, 2004 10:21 pm

Are there any other european carriers that fly into Vietnam ?
 
HB-IWC
Topic Author
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RE: AF To Give Up Nonstop Vietnam Flights

Tue Dec 28, 2004 10:32 pm

Lufthansa is operating a thrice weekly service MUC-BKK-SGN. The flight used to operate from Frankfurt, but was transfered to Munich at the beginning of November.

 
swissgabe
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RE: AF To Give Up Nonstop Vietnam Flights

Tue Dec 28, 2004 10:44 pm

Does KLM still fly into SGN or did they stop?

Swissair also used to fly to SGN before 2001
Smooth as silk - Royal Orchid Service /// Suid-Afrikaanse Lugdiens - Springbok
 
FlySSC
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RE: AF To Give Up Nonstop Vietnam Flights

Tue Dec 28, 2004 11:40 pm

AF nonstop flights will stop during the summer season only.
The NONSTOP flights will re-start for the next winter season 2005/06 to both SGN and HAN.
 
AF022
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RE: AF To Give Up Nonstop Vietnam Flights

Tue Dec 28, 2004 11:46 pm

VN appears to have daily SGNCDG nonstop and 5 weekly HANCDG nonstop. Perhaps VN is doing better on this route? Does anyone know?
 
Econojetter
Posts: 356
Joined: Thu May 24, 2001 11:24 pm

RE: AF To Give Up Nonstop Vietnam Flights

Wed Dec 29, 2004 11:54 am

I guess it is appropriate to take into account KL flights to BKK as part of AF's presence there. So that makes 2x daily for AF/KL into BKK. Even with that, AF/KL still lags LH at BKK... but that is not surprising since BKK is a Star hub. BA/QF offer 2x daily (but part of the Kangaroo route i.e. not dedicated BKK from LHR), if I am not mistaken.

AF022:
The daily SGN and 5x weekly HAN nonstops offered by VN include the AF-operated codeshare flights, based on HB-IWC's post. That means, during the 2005 northern summer schedule, VN will be back to 3x weekly nonstop SGN and 2xweekly nonstop HAN, unless VN plans / is permitted to operate its own additional flights to CDG.
 
6thfreedom
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RE: AF To Give Up Nonstop Vietnam Flights

Wed Dec 29, 2004 1:16 pm

My understanding is that Vietnam route is low yield AND very seasonal.

I wonder whether the downgrade to A343 on CDG-BKK and tags to SGN and HAN by AF has anything to do with the fact that ALL of its France-Australia traffic will no travel via SIN on a B773, then codesharing with QF.

In the best AF has several interline agreements, including QF and TG over BKK...

 
HB-IWC
Topic Author
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RE: AF To Give Up Nonstop Vietnam Flights

Wed Dec 29, 2004 1:38 pm

I guess it is appropriate to take into account KL flights to BKK as part of AF's presence there.

Even KL's presence in Bangkok is not overwhelming. They fly a daily B744 combi in there, but that flight is shared with Taipei. I've always thought of Bangkok as one of Asia's larger O/D markets with respect to Europe, so it surprises me that an airline like AF puts one of its smaller widebodies on the route for a non-terminator flight.

 
TGV
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Joined: Wed Dec 29, 2004 1:37 pm

RE: AF To Give Up Nonstop Vietnam Flights

Wed Dec 29, 2004 5:40 pm

Just flew CDG-SGN two days ago.

The flight was quite full, even in business class. There were at least 4 persons (in BC) coming from the US (was it with Delta tickets, it is a codeshare, or AF tickets, I don't know).

I chatted with a flight attendant who told me (as mentioned by FLYSSC, who has an invaluable knowledge of AF) that it was difficult to have good load factors, except during holidays.
And that AF preferred to focus on the Chinese market with the available planes, waiting for the A380.

There is maybe another factor: on my last trip in october I flew the return journey with the codeshare VN flight: the comfort of the business class of VN, with full flat beds and a very good IFE was far superior to the AF one (still old config of the cabin, without even the increased pitch I saw on a CCS-CDG flight last week).
Maybe more passengers were using the VN flights (at least in business ?) and this had an impact on the financial results of the route : of course this depends how revenue was shared between the airlines.
Avoid 777 with 3-4-3 config in Y ! They are real sardine cans. (AF/KL for example)
 
mindscape
Posts: 193
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RE: AF To Give Up Nonstop Vietnam Flights

Wed Dec 29, 2004 6:16 pm

I have just been back from SGN on AF173/VN537 on a AF metal (A343 F-GLZT). The code sharing agreement between AF and VN has changed the AF metal flight time. Indeed, while it used to be a night flight, it is now a day flight with a departure at 9.40 AM Vietnamese time to arrive on the same day at 5.10 PM local time, letting the VN metal (B772) the evening departure. The morning flight is not very convenient as most of the pax are more leisure passengers and then prefer to stay one more day and to take the evening flight. My flight was not full at all : no 1st class pax (F-GLZT has still the old seats configuration with 6 first class seats), only 3 business pax, and in Tempo class at the rear of the cabin it was possible to take the 4 seats of the middle row to sleep !
I don't know what the sharing agreements between AF and VN are (concerning benefits, etc.), but AF173 does not seem to be very profitable, but it is based on my experience and may be it was an exception.
Anyway, the code sharing will end temporally for the summer season 2005, with a flight to SGN or HAN via BKK, but I believe the A343 will be replaced by a B744 as it was for the summer season 2004... may be FLYSSC can confirm it or not.
 
FlySSC
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Joined: Tue Aug 12, 2003 1:38 am

RE: AF To Give Up Nonstop Vietnam Flights

Thu Dec 30, 2004 6:50 am

During the next summer 2005 season, Viet-Nam will be served Daily by AF via BKK :

-AF162 CDG-BKK-SGN on Mo,We,Fri,Sa.
-AF172 CDG-BKK-HAN on Su,Tu,Thu.

all the flights will be operated by an A343.

The nonstop flights will restart for the next winter 2005 season :

1-3--6- CDG.13h30 -----> SGN.07h20 A343 (AF) AF178/DL8616
-2-45-7 CDG.14h00 -----> SGN.07h50 B777 (VN) VN532/AF176

-2-4--- CDG.13h30 -----> HAN.06h40 A343 (AF) AF152/DL8618/VN538
1-3--6- CDG.14h00 -----> HAN.07h10 B777 (VN) VN534/AF168


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Econojetter
Posts: 356
Joined: Thu May 24, 2001 11:24 pm

RE: AF To Give Up Nonstop Vietnam Flights

Thu Dec 30, 2004 7:03 am

Oh, I should have written 4x SGN and 3x HAN nonstops operated by VN.

Thanks for the info, FlYSSC. So, the AF nonstops will resume winter 2005. Why will VN not place its code on AF178 for winter 2005 or is that an accidental omission?
 
FlySSC
Posts: 5179
Joined: Tue Aug 12, 2003 1:38 am

RE: AF To Give Up Nonstop Vietnam Flights

Thu Dec 30, 2004 7:09 am

Oooops !!! that's an omission...  Innocent

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