Posts: 264
Joined: Fri Nov 19, 1999 10:08 pm

How's Alitalia, KLM, And Air France?

Sun Jun 18, 2000 5:39 am

I'm looking for people so share their experiences with Alitalia, KLM, and Air France? How are their service and comfort levels? The employees and crews? How easy it is to connect through their hubs (MXP/FCO, AMS, and CDG respecitvely).

How would they be as a global alliance partner?

Thanks for your help. If you would prefer to contact me via e-mail, you are welcome to do so. My e-mail address is in my profile. Thanks.
Tg 747-300
Posts: 1282
Joined: Fri Nov 26, 1999 6:08 am

RE: How's Alitalia, KLM, And Air France?

Sun Jun 18, 2000 5:51 am

I can just speak about KLM. I have also flied on AF, but that is 5 years ago so i refuse to compear the 1995 standard with the 2000 standard.

KLm is one of the best european airlines, and has a very high service and comfort level. (can almost be compared to asian carriers which we all know are great.)
KLM offer hot/cold towels on all flights in europe, and has very good food and extremly friendly FA's
They let you stay in the cocpit for a long time (I stayde ther when we descended from FL360-100 and was very satisfied. After the visit the FA brought my grandparents, which i travled together with, a Bussines class chockolate in a nice box   )
Their hub AMS is good to conect at, but badly i had no time to look in the shops when i was there (just run from gate-gate   )

I rate KLM 9/10 on european flights

Tg 747-300
intentionally left blank
Posts: 2115
Joined: Tue May 18, 1999 3:49 am

RE: How's Alitalia, KLM, And Air France?

Sun Jun 18, 2000 5:54 am


As you may imagine because of my ID, I like Air France very much and i can only strongly advise you this airline. KLM for example has also a good service in business and first classes, however my opinion is that Air France wins on crew and food quality. The seats are also very confortable (in business and coach).

There is a PTV available at each seat on most of the long haul aircraft, with good and very recent movies.

Best regards,
Alain Mengus
Posts: 264
Joined: Fri Nov 19, 1999 10:08 pm

RE: How's Alitalia, KLM, And Air France?

Sun Jun 18, 2000 5:58 am

Thanks for the responses. Tg 747-300 brought up a good point. I'm looking for experiences in the last couple of years, since I feel that all three airlines have undergone major changes.

Strategically, how would they be as an alliance partner? I know there are some problems with Alitalia's new Milan hub. (Malpensa).

Thanks and please keep the replies coming!
Posts: 4994
Joined: Sun Nov 21, 1999 11:18 pm

RE: AFa340-300E

Sun Jun 18, 2000 11:27 am

KLM do not have a seperate First and Business Class. It is simply one improved Business Class!

Jeremiah Teahan
Goodbye SR-LX MD-11 / 6th of March 1991 to the 31st of October 2004
Posts: 510
Joined: Sun Aug 22, 1999 8:53 pm

RE: AFa340-300E

Sun Jun 18, 2000 8:27 pm

Malpensa is one of the main reasons KLM and AZ terminated their alliance. It is expected that the airport is not allowed to grow at the rate they wanted to due to environmental people.

As I have never changed planes before in Paris and I come from the Neterlands and fly often. I can only advise you on Amsterdam Schiphol. It is in my opinion the best airport in Europe and everything you want to be in an aiport is there under one roof. Changing planes is very easy as the airport is set up clearly. Furthermore KLM is a great airline, with great service, on time flights, friendly FAs. I would also rank the 9 out of 10.

I flew AF a year ago and on that day there was a strike at AF or the Paris airport. So I was stranded at AMS and had to take the train to Paris, which I liked soo much I never fly to Paris again and will always go by train.

Too bad AF has a bad immage with all their strikes, but it is understandable. Anyway AF is quite a good airline. Great service and friendly FAs, but not reliable.
I would rank AF 7 out of 10

If possible for you I would try out LH. I love them. They are great. Too bad their main hub FRA looks quite dirty and old. LH is very reliable and everytime I have flown them (about 10 times the past 5 years) they were on time. I would rank LH 9 out of 10.

No experience with AZ.

See ya
Posts: 1274
Joined: Tue May 23, 2000 1:06 am


Mon Jun 19, 2000 1:37 am

To be honest, I do not like the AF CDG hub. For such a recently built Terminal Two, why do they still have to shuttle pax to planes by bus half the time. Beats me! AF has tried to balance the terminal with the interests of both Paris pax and connecting pax. CDG is FAR more convenient for Paris pax than connecting ones. The check-in to gate walk is generally no more than about 200 feet. The bus problems could be alleviated if AF could use a better gate utilization system. They insist upon each "Halle" of their Terminal Two only handling certain flights. For example, Halle E may only handle African flights leaving gates underused for large portions of the day whilst at the same time at this Halle is quite, Halle C may be overflowing with not enough gates. It makes no sense.
Posts: 170
Joined: Wed May 10, 2000 7:49 pm

RE: How's Alitalia, KLM, And Air France?

Mon Jun 19, 2000 6:38 am

I can only give my opinion on KLM and Amsterdam Schiphol, and I agree with what Tg 747-300 said.

Schiphol is one of Europe's most user friendly and well laid out airports. I was travelling in 1998, when KLM and their partners had a policy of 60-120 min. connection times at Schiphol. That worked for me (95 min) - just enough time to do some spotting, shopping and take off again. Is that still Schiphol's slogan? "See, buy, fly"...
Posts: 96
Joined: Tue May 25, 1999 7:15 am

RE: How's Alitalia, KLM, And Air France?

Mon Jun 19, 2000 8:16 am

I think they are 3 good ones.
My experiences are only on European flights:
KLM is the most reliable in terms of service: good standard (not great but always the same, that is good...), AirFrance and Alitalia can go from the super top to the lower bottom, accordingly to the crew, the day and the weather   This is true expecially for Alitalia: You can't find anything better of a business class seat in an almost empty MD 80 with a young crew, but the next time you can be totally ignored in a superbusy A321 for a couple of hours by a rather unfriendly crew.
In terms of hubs, Malpensa is weak. It is new and spacious but ground services are still too often rather crap. Not always a fault of Alitalia: try to wait 20 minutes in front of the only policeman at immigration with a 747 full of Japanees tourists in front of you. Alitalia lounge at Malpensa is possibly the worst lounge in the world I have been into.
CDG is nice, but do not even dare to plan a connection between CDG 1 and 2 with less than 2 hours in the middle. It is just not relaxing, most of my colleagues and myself just ask our travel agent to avoid connections in CDG if another option is available. The architecture of the terminals is great, but not at all my favourite in terms of practicity.
Amsterdam is a great airport. Better with roller skates on....

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