Posts: 2761
Joined: Sun Jul 11, 1999 7:40 am

AF To Miami

Mon May 22, 2000 2:37 am

Just stepped off the plane from LHR and got home an hour ago...

After 8 years of choosing NOT to fly Air France...I was pleasantly surprised by the service on-board my flights this week. I flew LHR-CDG-MIA-CDG-LHR with AF and only have a few gripes.

LHR-CDG return - what's the deal with the plastic cups for tea/coffee...the least they could do is use proper plastic cups and saucers as oppose to the take-away style vessels...minor point but did make the beverage service look shoddy. The A320 on LHR-CDG was OK but it was my first A320 flight - I wasn't impressed. The cabin actually felt smaller and the seats seemed narrower than the return on the B737-500. The A320 was also much noisier than the 737.

CDG-MIA return - ourbound the service was adequate - unfortunately - the 747-200 was quite old and rattled on take-off (so I thought until our return last night on AF91 - another 747-200 that REALLY rattled on t/off). No PTVs and rather poor in-flight entertainment I thought. Food on outbound was rather uninspiring but return last night was good. I was touched by a stewardess who took a couple's baby for a walk after take-off so the couple could settle themselves for the night. I also liked the way that AF took some time after t/off to ensure ALL passengers were comfortable BEFORE sending out the drinks carts...unlike BA.

Transfer at CDG - unfortunately - I will not be in a hurry to do this again - hassles with buses and crowding at the gates at Terminal 2C on departure was chaotic.

Nevertheless - I would probably fly AF again to restart my Frequence Plus a/c since it wasn't all that bad...shame KLM just does it that little bit better with the transfer at Schiphol.
Posts: 70
Joined: Sun Apr 02, 2000 8:50 am

RE: AF To Miami

Mon May 22, 2000 5:18 am

Air France is a classy airline. One of the best. But I am curious, if you don't like them, why you flew AF as you have SO MANY CHOICES from MIA?
Posts: 424
Joined: Thu Apr 06, 2000 8:47 pm


Mon May 22, 2000 7:48 am

MAS777, I just want to mention two points:

1. Whatever you felt, it's a matter of fact that the A320 cabin is some inches wider than the 737's. Don't know what AF does with the seats on that a/c. I've flown on LH A320's and 737-500 many times, and their A320's have always been wider and less noisy than their 735's. Don't know what AF did with their aircraft.

2. In my opinion, AF is the worst carrier outside the U.S., where AA holds the title. I flew the CDG-MIA route two times a few years ago, they used very old and rattly 747-100. The cabin was in bad condition, the people pretty unfriendly and unable to speak english even if badged as english speaking. The a/c was noisy and the onboard entertainment never worked properly. The pilot announced turbulences in french only ("trés turbulence"), and we had lot of them. During the return flight there was no beverage service all night long. At the end, the crew performed a very bad landing, the large old bird bounced 3 times before "final touch down".

Posts: 835
Joined: Fri May 05, 2000 2:08 am

RE: AF To Miami

Mon May 22, 2000 8:12 am

AF on CDG to MIA is pretty bad. So bad that I was thinking that maybe AF makes an effort to punish French pleasure-seekers who go to America instead of to Marseilles or Nice   . Let me make a list of how they offended me when I took that route this summer.

1) Extremely crowded departure area with lots of unwashed French people in summer. Yuck. But it's not AF's fault, it's a general flaw of France. Before the Francophiles lay into me, I'd like to say that America has its flaws too. But they don't include the bad smell flaw in quite so much frequency.

2) Aircraft was delayed for three hours while they boarded standby pax, then decided that they didn't want them aboard. Confusion ensued.

3) Aircraft was a 747-100; clean but falling apart and dingy.

4) Aloof flight attendants. They didn't want to DO anything; get people drinks, serve the food (which was of average quality). However they were stylishly dressed; AF flight attendants are the second cutest in the sky.

5) The movie projector didn't work well and nobody put down their shades.

6) When we got to MIA, my sister didn't have her baggage. It was the second time AF had lost our bags. As a matter of fact there was a whole group of poor Germans from Cologne who lost their bags.

7) Nobody was at the counter to take care of the folks who had lost their bags. They were giving out amenity packs instead of money to buy new underwear. Significantly, the amenity packs did not include any drawers or panties. Only a T-shirt.... Gross... especially if you're German and I felt even more pity for them than my sister. Luckily for us and our revenge plans (which are revealed later, keep reading), their non-English speaking employees gave us four amenity packs.

8) They didn't get our bags to us until two weeks later, when we got home. Fortunately, since this was the second time my sister had lost her baggage, we just told AF to send the bags home instead of to our hotel in Orlando.

9) Guess what the T-shirt had on it? It was plain white and said "Air France". So you advertise the airline that lost your luggage?

The denouement: My family and I stopped in a Wal-Mart on our way to Orlando and bought some clothes and a big black marker. Then we modified the shirts to say


and wore the T-shirts to Universal Studios.  
Posts: 835
Joined: Fri May 05, 2000 2:08 am

RE: AF To Miami

Mon May 22, 2000 10:27 am

just putting this back on top, eh?

RE: AF To Miami

Mon May 22, 2000 9:06 pm

It sounded pretty bad. I flew on the same route (MIA-CDG) but in an Airbus A340. The plane has a very nice ride when I flew on Air France. No bad comments on both flights. FlyBoeing, it seems your were bad luck that it happended to you. Al airlines will have a smaller or higher percentage for covering lost baggage.

But AF should have given you better items and money instead of a t-shirt.

Just a side note, also flew on the AF 747-200 on their TEH-CDG. The 747 was packed to full, but an overall good flight.


RE: AF To Miami

Mon May 22, 2000 9:20 pm

Mas777, to avoid the hassles of transferring at CDG by bus (I hate it also, and they are sometimes rude with passengers), if you stay in Terminal 2, you can transfer by walking instead of using buses (underground paths exist to transfer from one Terminal to another. It is pretty well indicated normally). It is a 10' walk at most.

AA vs AF....I have used AF and AA on BOS-CDG and AF was much better than AA every time I've used them. Flight attendants mainly much more friendly than AA...AA was not bad at all, AF was just better. As far as plane is concerned, AF was using an old B767 and I was not too impressed...

AF Cabin Crew
Posts: 930
Joined: Sun Sep 19, 1999 11:45 pm

RE: AF To Miami

Tue May 23, 2000 1:47 am

Hi Mas777 !

I am very happy your flight went smoothly though not exceptional.

I am operating on a MIA flight on the 25th of May myself.

As all of you and all my colleagues, I also dislike the 747 classics.
Yet I have good news, the 747-100 have all left the fleet with the last one having left the fleet a few months ago. The 747-200 are leaving the fleet around 2005.
For BOS-CDG, the 767-300 and the A310's will leave the fleet around 2003 when the A330-200 will be introduced. You will be able to enjoy state of the art entertainment systems with PTV's at every seat in the plane, excellent food with self-service soft drink bar in Tempo and buffet which varies according to the destination and the length of the flight. All flights get 2 kind of sandwiches and cakes and on asian flights you get noodle soup as well. Flights from Argentina you will delight yourself with famous argentinian Alfajores.
Also Air France has redecorated all its classes while rebranding them.
The l'Espace 180 becomes l'Espace Premiere and the seats are now in shades of cream and white with red carmin square pillow with a flower pattern, a red blanquet (I don't know the colour of the duvet cover ) and another white pillow.
L'Espace Affaires is the new Business Class name and Blue and a colour that looks like a khaki-beige-grey sort of. It looks very good but my favourite is the Business class' new blanquet which has the flying seahorse in big on it, STUNNING !
Tempo keeps its name and the cabin will stays in blue dominents. The headrest cover will have stripes of blue, white and red. The tray also changes with a very all white crockery and the only touch of colour is a red cup. Nice elipsic and curve and oval shapes.

An A340 is the first aircraft to be redecorated. All the fleet is getting its revamp and the A340 will all be equipped with the new Tempo seat with foot rest, adjustable headrest with wings and PTV's. Only F-GLZM to F-GLZS are equipped and the whole 777 fleet.

A new cabin crew uniform will come out around 2002.

I wish you all the best flights with Air France and hopefully to fly with me so that I can pamper you  

Happy Flying,

AF Cabin Crew.

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Photo © Kazutaka Yagi

Ia Maitai to tatou tere !
Posts: 835
Joined: Fri May 05, 2000 2:08 am

RE: AF To Miami

Tue May 23, 2000 2:24 am

AF Cabin Crew

But how do all of your improvements fix the problem of lost luggage, confusion with standby passengers, delays, and no reimbursements when you lose our luggage? It's no big deal the inflight service- and there's nothing especially horrible about AF's inflight service. I like the stewardess uniforms already. The stewardesses already fill them up quite well.

What matters is the stuff after the flight. My sister and I would have still written


on our T-shirts even if we'd flown on an A340 in first class. My sister had no clean underwear. Twenty Germans had no clean underwear. Thank God we didn't have any expensive souvenirs in our bags.

The inflight service occurs between the boarding and the baggage claim. AF needs to get the other two parts straight. It's really easy and there's no need to renovate anything.
Posts: 2761
Joined: Sun Jul 11, 1999 7:40 am

RE: AF To Miami

Thu May 25, 2000 6:44 am

Answers to the various questions :

1. I flew AF again 'coz a friend booked it and we booked late - so BA and VS were full and I WILL NEVER fly on board an American airline again - sorry....just heard too many bad reports and I find European and Asian carriers just have that 'je ne sais quoi' that US carriers don't.

2. I would fly AF again but not if I had to transfer at CDG. BTW - the underground tunnels were not that obvious and we felt pretty much like cattle being led down to the bus stops to connect at Terminal 2C which was not unlike a stable.

3. CDG shops are also v. poor....didn't stock any of my Aftershave and Deodorant and believe it or not it was made by Chanel.

4. Our AF91 also encountered a lot of turbulence back to CDG but that's NOT an airline's fault - Tom_EDDF.

5. Fair's fair...I was a BA Exec Club member but defected to KLM's F.Dutchman and MAS' Enriches programmes this year - only due to my travel commitments...and the general poor quality of BA's Exec Club....but AF did come pretty close to KLM and MAS.

6. Lastly, AF needs to get rid of those 747 Classics - rattling on rotation with overhead cabins flapping open should be something we only had to endure in the 1970s/80s.

7. AF Cabin Crew - thank you for the service on-board. You've come a long way since 1992...keep up the good work...shame you withdrew from Kuala Lumpur soon after taking over UTA....I do most of my flying on the LHR-KUL route.

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