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OA260
Topic Author
Posts: 23803
Joined: Thu Nov 30, 2006 8:50 pm

Air France Have You Really Improved? DUB-CDG-ATH.

Sun Mar 18, 2012 3:06 am

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/Air_France_Logo1.jpg

Welcome to my latest trip report. Once every 6 weeks I take 4 days off work in a row and it works out really well. I dont need to touch my annual leave and it gives me the chance to travel. So this time I decided to pop back to Greece to see the family for a few days and my Uncle wanted me to take a pair of special hi fi speakers that he wanted.

I could have gone with the normal safe options of LX A3 LH etc... but I decided I wanted to give Air France a try again . Air France and I have had a bad history over the years. They have offered me bad and rude service and left me stranded in CDG a few times without assistance. This combination has put me off choosing them on my trips.

During the A380 AF LHR-CDG promotions I took them and have to say warmed to them a bit after a good experience. I still found it hard to choose them for normal flights though as the A380 flights were always going to be something unique and they wanted to impress.

Paris CDG Airport has never been a favourite of mine and never will be , I have found it not the nicest airports in Europe to navigate and transit through and would never book a short connection through it.

Taking all this into account and wanting to see the Air France product currently being offered I threw caution to the wind and parted with some hard earned cash on the AF.COM website. Air France offered me good timings so that was a bonus.

-----


The morning came and I took the bus as usual to Dublin Airport.


http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/Air_France_Logo1.jpg


DATE: 10/MAR/2012
AIRLINE: AIR FRANCE BY CITYJET
FLIGHT: AF 1079
ROUTE: DUB - CDG
CLASS: VOYAGER
SEAT: 17A
AIRCRAFT: AVROJET RJ85
REG: EI - RJY



I arrived at the check in area and they were just opening. I was the only one in the Premium line waiting to check in and I was promptly invited to approach the desk and check in .


http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/AFATH/file.jpg

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/AFATH/file-1.jpg

The agent taged my suitcase and then the box with the speakers. She asked me to take these to outsized baggage which I did .

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/AFATH/file-2.jpg

After this I cleared security in Terminal 1 and then made my way to Terminal 2 as usual to visit my regular coffee house  http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/AFATH/file-3.jpg

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http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/AFATH/file-9.jpg

Oh yes the Chocolate lounge never fails to impress. I have a loyalty card here now   Another few visits and they owe me a free choice  http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/AFATH/file-10.jpg

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Soon time to head to the Anna Livia lounge :

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/AFATH/file-20.jpg

Some discreet changes to the lounge signs :

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/AFATH/file-21.jpg

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/AFATH/file-22.jpg

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http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/AFATH/file-29.jpg

The lounge is not amazing. Basic offerings and small. The DAA are failing to step up to the mark with their choice of lounges and the quality. They could do so much better .

Soon time to head to the A Gates :

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/AFATH/file-30.jpg

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They have done a refurb in this area which is alot better then the hole it used to be :

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/AFATH/file-34.jpg

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http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/AFATH/file-41.jpg
 
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OA260
Topic Author
Posts: 23803
Joined: Thu Nov 30, 2006 8:50 pm

RE: Air France Have You Really Improved? DUB-CDG-ATH.

Sun Mar 18, 2012 3:07 am

Soon time to board. Lots of Families with young kids heading to Eurodisney. They boarded first then Elites were allowed to board. I guess the idea is to get the kids out of the way which worked out well in the end. I was surprised at how little connecting passengers were boarding for destinations beyond CDG .

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http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/AFATH/file-45.jpg

I was greeted at the top of the stairs by a friendly FA . For me this flight is not a AF flight and a CityJet flight and the service is normally good.

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/AFATH/file-46.jpg

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http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/AFATH/file-52.jpg



Once boarding had been completed the flight was 99% full we pushed back passing the ditched JK fleet.

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Our turn to take off :

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/AFATH/file-64.jpg

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After take off the FA handed out refresher wipes :

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/AFATH/file-68.jpg

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http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/AFATH/file-70.jpg

I really like this pic :

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/AFATH/file-71.jpg

Soon the free onboard snack service commenced :

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/AFATH/file-72.jpg

Not a bad offering and the muffins whilst not Chocolate lounge standard were quite enjoyable. I had the Walnut one which was fresh. The FA's also came round oferring seconds but I declined .
 
User avatar
OA260
Topic Author
Posts: 23803
Joined: Thu Nov 30, 2006 8:50 pm

RE: Air France Have You Really Improved? DUB-CDG-ATH.

Sun Mar 18, 2012 3:08 am

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/AFATH/file-73.jpg

After that I was so tired that I fell asleep before waking up to see we were landing into CDG .

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/AFATH/file-74.jpg

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We pulled up on stand eventually after a very long taxi and then disembarked thanking the crew for a pleasant flight.

We were then bused to the Terminal.

The transfer game started and initially after clearing passport control the signs were not that clear to turn left or right but I asked someone and was pointed in the right direction. The No.1 access to passport control really made a difference and skipped the long lines.

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/AFATH/file-79.jpg

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Eventually I arrived from 2E to 2D and made my way to the Air France lounge :

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/AFATH/file-90.jpg

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As I entered the lounge I was greeted in French to which I replied ''Hi'' . I was then greeted with ''Welcome to the lounge Mr OA260 please make yourself at home''. I have to say I was taken by surprise at such a welcome based on past experiences. It instantly brought a smile to my face and a feel good factor. I thanked the lounge agent and proceeded into the lounge.

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/AFATH/file-93.jpg

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Sadly the treatment center was closed.

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/AFATH/file-106.jpg

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/AFATH/file-107.jpg

This lounge is the oldest one AFAIK. Its not much to look at but surprisingly comfortable and pleasant. Its no flagship modern lounge but the food and beverage selection was not bad at all. The lounge does need to be gutted out and re done though. Its stuck in the 90's in terms of design.


http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/AFATH/file-108.jpg

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A nice little snack :

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/AFATH/file-114.jpg

Signs of its age :

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/AFATH/file-115.jpg

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http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/AFATH/file-117.jpg

After a nice enough time in the lounge and taking advantage of the free wifi by Orange it was time to head to the gate for my flight to Athens.



http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/Air_France_Logo1.jpg
 
User avatar
OA260
Topic Author
Posts: 23803
Joined: Thu Nov 30, 2006 8:50 pm

RE: Air France Have You Really Improved? DUB-CDG-ATH.

Sun Mar 18, 2012 3:11 am

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/Air_France_Logo1.jpg


DATE: 10/MAR/2012
AIRLINE: AIR FRANCE
FLIGHT: AF 2332
ROUTE: CDG - ATH
CLASS: VOYAGER
SEAT: 25A
AIRCRAFT: AIRBUS A319
REG: F - GRXA




http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/AFATH/file-118.jpg

We were bused to the gate :

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http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/AFATH/file-120.jpg

I was greeted at the top of the stairs by a friendly FA and as I made my way to the back of the cabin the FA's greeted me also . So far so good  http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/AFATH/file-121.jpg

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http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/AFATH/file-130.jpg

First impressions of the cabin were very clean and comfortable and nice interior colours.

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/AFATH/file-131.jpg

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The flight was 80% full and a guy took the seat on the aisle. The FA came to him before we pushed back and told him he could move to the row in front which was totally free as it would give us more space. This was nice as we would both have a row of three to ourselves.

AF retro jet :

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/AFATH/file-137.jpg

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Safety demo :

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/AFATH/file-141.jpg

We made our way to the runway and took off :

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/AFATH/file-142.jpg

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/AFATH/file-143.jpg

Soon after the crew came around with these cold trays. Now I knew AF catering was not the same standard as A3 OA TK BA etc... and no hot choice would be offered on this longer route but I have to say the meal was well presented and more important tasted very good. The service was with a smile and the drinks were of a good quality.

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/AFATH/file-144.jpg

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/AFATH/file-145.jpg

I usually turn my nose up at cold meals on over 3 hour flights but I was impressed by this .

More drinks and tasty cookies were offered and accepted  http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/AFATH/file-146.jpg

Nice quality chocolate also to enjoy.

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/AFATH/file-147.jpg

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/AFATH/file-148.jpg

Just then the head FA came to me and had a printed passenger list in her hand. She said ''Hello Mr OA260'' ( handed me a pillow and smiled ) . ''I just wanted to check that all is ok with you ? '' I said yes everything was perfect and she invited me to complete a survey. I was very impressed with this and quite unexpected.

Coffee and tea was also offered . The Coffee was quite good for airline brew.

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/AFATH/file-149.jpg

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Soon time to stretch out and watch some music videos :

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http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/AFATH/file-156.jpg

I fell asleep again and soon I woke up to the FA announcing it was time to land into ATH. I put everything away and soon we touched down and pulled up to the gate :

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/AFATH/file-157.jpg

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/AFATH/file-158.jpg

I thanked the crew for a lovely flight and disembarked the aircraft making my way to the baggage reclaim:

The two items came off not first but somewhere in the middle :

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/AFATH/file-159.jpg

I then made my way to my family house , ordered a Souvlaki from my local shop and went to bed  
 
User avatar
OA260
Topic Author
Posts: 23803
Joined: Thu Nov 30, 2006 8:50 pm

RE: Air France Have You Really Improved? DUB-CDG-ATH.

Sun Mar 18, 2012 3:12 am

After a few days and a side trip later to be reported   It was time to leave Athens and head back to Ireland.

My Cousin dropped me off at the Express bus stop and I made my way to ATH.

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/AFATH/file-160.jpg

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http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/Air_France_Logo1.jpg


DATE: 13/MAR/2012
AIRLINE: AIR FRANCE
FLIGHT: AF 1533
ROUTE: ATH - CDG
CLASS: VOYAGER
SEAT: 14F
AIRCRAFT: AIRBUS A319
REG: F - GRHS



I checked in at the Premium counter and the agent taged my bags to Dublin. She then gave me an invitation to the lounge. I asked her is it was possible to block the middle row to which she replied ''I will try to keep it to the end but the flight is quite full but I will try '' I thanked her very much for her offer and then made my way to the lounge .

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/AFATH/file-164.jpg

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http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/AFATH/file-167.jpg

I was welcomed to the lounge and I have to say this is quickley becoming one of my favourite lounges at ATH. Its bright clean and decent food and drink offerings. Its a bit like the A3 lounge without the offending smoking fumes drifting into the non smoking section. I still have to say the OA lounges win though in terms of whats on offer and the interior design.

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/AFATH/file-168.jpg

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After a pleasant stay in the lounge it was time to head to the gate using the fast track lane.
 
User avatar
OA260
Topic Author
Posts: 23803
Joined: Thu Nov 30, 2006 8:50 pm

RE: Air France Have You Really Improved? DUB-CDG-ATH.

Sun Mar 18, 2012 3:14 am

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Boarding was soon commenced and I was able to board along with another Elite member first. Again I was greeted at the door by a friendly FA and also by other FA's as I moved to the middle of the aircraft.

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Soon boarding was completed and the flight was indeed very full. The middle row remained free thankfully so I was happy to have the space.

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http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/AFATH/file-1738.jpg

Spot the A340 in the hanger being stripped of its livery !

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http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/AFATH/file-2292.jpg

Soon it was time to push back and make our way to take off :

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OA260
Topic Author
Posts: 23803
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RE: Air France Have You Really Improved? DUB-CDG-ATH.

Sun Mar 18, 2012 3:15 am

Being stripped of the Olympic Airlines livery :

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/AFATH/file-1141.jpg

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/AFATH/file-1023.jpg

Soon after take off the meal service commenced. Another cold meal but like the outbound flight this was tasty and quite filling. Served with some nice Chilled White wine to wash it down with .

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Coffee and cookies :

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/AFATH/file-1771.jpg

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I relaxed for the rest of the flight which was very pleasant .

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/AFATH/file-1656.jpg

The crew then came around before landing with these guides to anyone connecting at CDG. The crew had a list of connecting passengers. They included to DUB ( Me ) , DUS , HEL , MAD. We were all given these and the crew marked the exact terminal we needed to go to . I have to say this was impressive and the crew really went out of their way to explain how to transfer.

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/AFATH/file-2136.jpg

Soon we touched down at CDG and another long taxi to our stand .

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I said good bye to the crew and disembarked the aircraft.

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The connection game again :

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Sadly no EuroDisney for me today :

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I have to say 2E is a nice experience and bright . The No.1 access again made the whole process alot quicker and stress free.

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The lounge was not that well sign posted and I had to ask someone but I found it finally and was welcomed by a friendly lounge agent. He asked me if I had used the lounge before and aware of the facilities . I lied and said yes as I knew he was going to take me on a tour which I didnt need. Nice of him to ask though.

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Now your talking  http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/AFATH/file-379.jpg

The lounge is quite small but still quite comfortable. The food was not bad either .

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I didnt have all this food in one go   I was in the lounge for a few hours .


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Soon it was time to leave the lounge and head to the gate .



http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/Air_France_Logo1.jpg


DATE: 13/MAR/2012
AIRLINE: AIR FRANCE BY CITYJET
FLIGHT: AF 1778
ROUTE: CDG - DUB
CLASS: VOYAGER
SEAT: 17A
AIRCRAFT: AVROJET RJ85
REG: ?? - ??? ( Does anyone know ? )



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Boarding was a bit chaotic to be honest with no priority boarding but it wasnt too bad.

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I was greeted by a friendly FA and directed to my seat . This was to be a full flight also .

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We pushed back and made our way to take off. I fell alseep as I was so tired . I woke up to find some snacks placed on my tray table and I then hit the call button and asked for a coke which was brought to me with a smile. Nice touch I thought that they didnt just pass me by while I nodded off.

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/AFATH/file-1255.jpg


After that I fell asleep again before waking up to hear the engines make that unique sound on the RJ85.

http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/AFATH/file-1406.jpg

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We landed and made our way to the gate area. I disembarked and thanked the crew before making my way to the arrivals.

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All set for Paddys Day  http://i955.photobucket.com/albums/ae40/PhilipOA260/AFATH/file-1604.jpg


So thats the end of my trip report. I have to say I am glad I took the chance and flew Air France. They seem to have improved alot since I had my bad experiences. The product has improved , the crew seem better and the transfer process whilst still not the easiest is made easier by better signage and guides.

I found Air France offered value for money , on time flights and service with a smile. I am planning some longhaul flights and for the first time in years I have checked AF along with other carriers. Before AF would never have been considered.

Two flights are hard to tell how consistant a product is but they certainly showed their best to me .


Thanks for reading and I look forward to your comments as usual.

Regards

Philip / OA260  
 
Avianca
Posts: 5365
Joined: Tue Jan 25, 2005 5:33 am

RE: Air France Have You Really Improved? DUB-CDG-ATH.

Sun Mar 18, 2012 4:23 am

great report as usual!!!

I am not the biggest AF fan, but generally they delivered me a very good service.
Used them so far on several long haul routes like CDG-BOG-CDG, CCS-CDG-CCS, CDG-JFK-CDG, LIM-CDG-CCS, in eco and business, normally they are my number 2 carrier from SouthAmerica to Europe (of course I prefer LH but they are not serving the continent as AF is doing) anyhow with now serving CCS with 777 I am not looking forward to use the cramped 10 seat layout...

Cheers
Avianca
Colombia es el Mundo Y el Mundo es Colombia
 
Quokkas
Posts: 1327
Joined: Fri Jan 27, 2012 5:51 pm

RE: Air France Have You Really Improved? DUB-CDG-ATH.

Sun Mar 18, 2012 4:44 am

Hi Philip,
It looks as if AF has redeemed itself.

Nice series of shots of the EI retro livery on the A320.

I like the slogan, "they thing of me as 'Mr Campbell" not seat 4A", although that can be hard in practice sometimes.

Quoting OA260 (Reply 1):
I guess the idea is to get the kids out of the way

Something that upsets some of the other members of the forum, yet it does make things simpler for everyone.

Quoting OA260 (Reply 1):
The FA's also came round oferring seconds but I declined .

Very generous compared to many carriers who think they are extending themselves by offering a single bonbon.

Quoting OA260 (Reply 3):
and told him he could move to the row in front which was totally free

That's is considerate and shows that some crew will do that bit extra to make passengers more comfortable.

Quoting OA260 (Reply 3):
''I just wanted to check that all is ok with you ?

Your HVC status must be on that sheet she had.  
Quoting OA260 (Reply 4):
''I will try to keep it to the end but the flight is quite full but I will try ''

Again a very generous offer and one that she was able to keep.

All round the efforts of staff, from check-in, the lounges and on board, helped to make your journey more pleasant. Kudos to them.

Thanks for sharing,
Roy / Quokkas
“Not to laugh, not to cry, not to hate, but understand.” Spinoza
 
roberts87
Posts: 1095
Joined: Sat Dec 24, 2011 9:59 am

RE: Air France Have You Really Improved? DUB-CDG-ATH.

Sun Mar 18, 2012 8:02 am

Thanks for posting! Glad to hear AF has improved!

Quoting OA260 (Thread starter):
I was greeted at the top of the stairs by a friendly FA . For me this flight is not a AF flight and a CityJet flight and the service is normally good.

But in terms of in-flight service this does look like an AF flight. If I'm not mistaken, all services ex-LCY have Cityjet branded food and sandwiches.

Quoting OA260 (Thread starter):
The lounge does need to be gutted out and re done though. Its stuck in the 90's in terms of design

I believe that when the second satelite terminal for T2E opens this fall, T2D will be closed down and refurbished.

Quoting OA260 (Thread starter):
I have to say the meal was well presented and more important tasted very good. The service was with a smile and the drinks were of a good quality.

I'd rather have a good tasting cold meal then a so-so hot meal!
 
CO764
Posts: 275
Joined: Sat Jan 21, 2012 5:50 pm

RE: Air France Have You Really Improved? DUB-CDG-ATH.

Sun Mar 18, 2012 9:15 am

Quoting OA260 (Thread starter):
REG: ?? - ??? ( Does anyone know ? )

Great report! According to Flightdata24, you were on EI-RJO for your return flight.  
 
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OA260
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Posts: 23803
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RE: Air France Have You Really Improved? DUB-CDG-ATH.

Sun Mar 18, 2012 9:50 am

Quoting Avianca (Reply 7):
great report as usual!!!

Hi thanks alot Im glad you enjoyed it .

Quoting Avianca (Reply 7):
I am not the biggest AF fan

Me either but every airline deserves a second chance or in AFs case a fourth or fifth lol..

Quoting Avianca (Reply 7):
anyhow with now serving CCS with 777 I am not looking forward to use the cramped 10 seat layout...

Oh thats a shame what were they using before ?

Quoting Quokkas (Reply 8):
It looks as if AF has redeemed itself.

Hi and yes they certainly did on this flight ( s ) . If this is the way the product and service is on a regular basis then they have improved alot.

Quoting Quokkas (Reply 8):
Nice series of shots of the EI retro livery on the A320.

Yes I liked them also despite the odd reflection in the back ground which was annoying but nothing I could do .

Quoting Quokkas (Reply 8):
I like the slogan, "they thing of me as 'Mr Campbell" not seat 4A", although that can be hard in practice sometimes.

I like that slogan also its a nice idea but as you say not always possible.

Quoting Quokkas (Reply 8):
Your HVC status must be on that sheet she had.  

Yes i thought that too it was have shown the Plat. status .

Quoting roberts87 (Reply 9):
Thanks for posting! Glad to hear AF has improved!

Hey thanks for the reply and yes its good news indeed.

Quoting roberts87 (Reply 9):
But in terms of in-flight service this does look like an AF flight. If I'm not mistaken, all services ex-LCY have Cityjet branded food and sandwiches.

I have never flown WX/AF more than on the DUB-LCY-DUB route and DUB-CDG-DUB but I can see the differences between the two in terms of products used and crew uniforms. The nationality of the crew is also different.

Quoting roberts87 (Reply 9):
I believe that when the second satelite terminal for T2E opens this fall, T2D will be closed down and refurbished.

Thats good to hear and I look forward to seeing it. If all the terminals are brought up to the standard of 2E then it will be a vast improvement.

Quoting roberts87 (Reply 9):
I'd rather have a good tasting cold meal then a so-so hot meal!

Me too but on a 3.3 hour flight a decent hot meal like BA / OA / A3 / TK serve would be an enhancement in the product. As I said though the cold meal was decent so made up for it .

Quoting CO764 (Reply 10):
Great report! According to Flightdata24, you were on EI-RJO for your return flight.  

Thanks alot and thank you for the Reg also , now you say it that rings a bell  
 
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usdcaguy
Posts: 1427
Joined: Mon Jan 26, 2004 12:41 pm

RE: Air France Have You Really Improved? DUB-CDG-ATH.

Sun Mar 18, 2012 10:51 am

One way to avoid the cramped layout on the 777 is to buy Premium Voyageur, which is much better than Voyageur and has only an 8-seat layout with good legroom, nice recline, plenty of horizontal space and decent service. Sometimes the fares are comparable to higher prices in Voyageur.

One thing I think is unfortunate is that the AF lounge area at CDG shown above looks bland and boring (especially when comparing it to the new KLM lounges at Schiphol). That's unfortunate; CDG in general is architecturally very interesting, and much could have been done to ensure that the lounge was a showcase of that work, but it looks stuffy with low ceilings and not much color. It does look better than many of the lounges in the States, but that's not saying much at all, given the disappointing step down that air travel can be in the US.
 
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OA260
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Posts: 23803
Joined: Thu Nov 30, 2006 8:50 pm

RE: Air France Have You Really Improved? DUB-CDG-ATH.

Sun Mar 18, 2012 11:01 am

Quoting usdcaguy (Reply 12):

Yes I was looking at the Prem Voyager fares also and I was surprised at how cheap it was and would be well worth the extra money . Im impressed with the look of the seat and space provided.

As for the lounge I also agree. They could have done alot better. I presume you mean the 2E one?
 
Phen
Posts: 270
Joined: Mon Oct 29, 2007 7:05 pm

RE: Air France Have You Really Improved? DUB-CDG-ATH.

Sun Mar 18, 2012 2:52 pm

Quoting OA260 (Thread starter):
Oh yes the Chocolate lounge never fails to impress.

Indeed I've indulged there a few times myself; I love how this has become an integral part of your TRs now  . As usual a great report - shame about the Anna Livia lounge, they really need to overhaul it. Nice to see Pier A has been given a facelift though. Looking forward to your next report aleady!
 
malioil
Posts: 146
Joined: Sun Jun 13, 2010 3:19 pm

RE: Air France Have You Really Improved? DUB-CDG-ATH.

Sun Mar 18, 2012 3:21 pm

Thanks and well, AF is looking good!

A great TR, really thank you for sharing and brings a lot of good reading/entertainment for us aviation loving folk.

I JUST booked DXB-CDG-LHR-CDG-DXB on AF in J and was worried at first in regards to my choice, but this has culled my fear ever so slightly. I have not flown AF since 1999, so this is an experience I look forward too.

I could have flown BAH-LHR-BAH for the same price... but instead I chose BAH-DXB-CDG-LHR-CDG-DXB-BAH... thats when you start to worry about how aviation crazy you're becoming.

One again, thanks for a great TR !
 
Avianca
Posts: 5365
Joined: Tue Jan 25, 2005 5:33 am

RE: Air France Have You Really Improved? DUB-CDG-ATH.

Sun Mar 18, 2012 3:30 pm

Quoting OA260 (Reply 11):
Oh thats a shame what were they using before ?

well some years ago they still used the 744 (the eco on the upper deck was great and I loved to use AF on the roue). they used in the last years algo A332 and mostly A343

Cheers
Avianca
Colombia es el Mundo Y el Mundo es Colombia
 
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OA260
Topic Author
Posts: 23803
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RE: Air France Have You Really Improved? DUB-CDG-ATH.

Sun Mar 18, 2012 3:54 pm

Quoting Phen (Reply 14):
Indeed I've indulged there a few times myself; I love how this has become an integral part of your TRs now  . As usual a great report - shame about the Anna Livia lounge, they really need to overhaul it. Nice to see Pier A has been given a facelift though. Looking forward to your next report aleady!

Hey thanks alot for that Im glad you like them. For sure the Choc lounge has become a feature in my TRs and I love that place. I know its only a small thing but I really look forward to it everytime. Just nice coffee and muffins looking out over the Pier really relaxing. Indeed I hope they upgrade the interior it wouldnt cost that much and would make all the difference.

Quoting malioil (Reply 15):
I JUST booked DXB-CDG-LHR-CDG-DXB on AF in J and was worried at first in regards to my choice, but this has culled my fear ever so slightly. I have not flown AF since 1999, so this is an experience I look forward too.

Thanks for the reply and I am sure you will have a great time especially in J class. Just allow time for transit and remember to use the No.1 access lounge. Its always a good idea to look at the CDG map and know where you have to go . If in doubt ask rather then go the wrong way . Look forward to hearing your feedback . Have a wonderful trip  
Quoting Avianca (Reply 16):
well some years ago they still used the 744 (the eco on the upper deck was great and I loved to use AF on the roue). they used in the last years algo A332 and mostly A343

Oh thats a big difference . The Prem Voyager is worth a look at though , I hate longhaul in Y but Id consider Prem Voyager for the small fee to upgrade.
 
countvis
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RE: Air France Have You Really Improved? DUB-CDG-ATH.

Sun Mar 18, 2012 5:36 pm

Excellent trip report, and I am glad you had a pleasant experience with AF. I can't understand why they will only provide a cold meal. The meal you got looks fantastic for economy class, certainly akin to some business class offerings, albeit on slightly shorter flights.
 
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RE: Air France Have You Really Improved? DUB-CDG-ATH.

Sun Mar 18, 2012 5:55 pm

Quoting countvis (Reply 18):

Hi and thanks for the reply . Im glad I had a good flight with them too I was hoping so much it wouldnt turn out sour and Im glad it didnt . Your right about the meal Ive had cold platters in J that wernt great so for a cold meal they impressed.
 
FlyingFinn76
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RE: Air France Have You Really Improved? DUB-CDG-ATH.

Sun Mar 18, 2012 7:01 pm

Hi Phil,

Good to see you giving Air France another chance. Your flights look quite decent, I thought they'd be offering sandwiches on these long routes as well but good to see that they are still giving you a full meal, even though it is a cold one. CityJet has always been a high class carrier, glad to see their standards haven't gone down!

Those lounges at CDG look quite decent - judging from Markus' reports I thought them to be quite a bit of more basic (especially on the F&B front, let's not talk about the dated interiors!) but your photos show them in a far better light!

Quoting OA260 (Thread starter):
The lounge is not amazing. Basic offerings and small. The DAA are failing to step up to the mark with their choice of lounges and the quality. They could do so much better .

I was in that lounge back in 2004 I think and can honestly say it hasn't changed a bit, judging from your photos!

Quoting OA260 (Thread starter):
They have done a refurb in this area which is alot better then the hole it used to be :

That indeed looks better - I remember it being just a row of portacabins some years ago.

Quoting OA260 (Thread starter):
Not a bad offering and the muffins whilst not Chocolate lounge standard were quite enjoyable. I had the Walnut one which was fresh. The FA's also came round oferring seconds but I declined .

Ahh, this seems to happen often on CityJet - I got all the sandwiches I could eat on my LCY-ORY flight with them.

Quoting OA260 (Thread starter):
Being stripped of the Olympic Airlines livery :

So they finally found a new owner for these?

Quoting OA260 (Thread starter):
We were all given these and the crew marked the exact terminal we needed to go to . I have to say this was impressive and the crew really went out of their way to explain how to transfer.

Yeah, they seem to do this quite often at CDG. Of course one could always argue that if the airport was a bit better signposted and designed with transit passengers in mind these wouldn't be needed...
 
FLIEGER67
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RE: Air France Have You Really Improved? DUB-CDG-ATH.

Sun Mar 18, 2012 7:08 pm

Hi, Phil,

well done.
Good to follow something around AF and CDG from you´re hand.
You know I´am doing that also somewhat frequent and the lounges looking well known to me.
Good pictures by the way.
Now looking forward to you´re ATH sidetrip.

Greetings,
Markus(FLIEGER67)
Tripreporter.net
 
reifel
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RE: Air France Have You Really Improved? DUB-CDG-ATH.

Sun Mar 18, 2012 7:12 pm

Good Day and thanks a lot for sharing. I'm glad that you had a good time with AF and I hope you don't mind that I use this report to write about my AF experience on a short haul hop from FRA to CDG and back this weekend.

To keep it short: I was absolutely impressed. Firstly, flights were on time. Secondly, the crew was excellent and accomodating on all of the flights. They were equally friendly to frenchspeaking guests than to foreign ones. The new europe cabin looks smart (it's not the one you had). Although in my opinion it doesn't look as smart as the new LH cabin, I find it more comfortable. I was sceptical about not being able to recline the seat, but it was mor comfortable than the LH one and absolutely okay for a short haul flight.

The crew came through the cabin offering smart looking red pillows to guests. Once cabin was half dimmed, the crew members came through the cabin switching on the personal reading lights for people reading. Catering was adequate for the short flight. And they played german announcements from tape, no problem for only german speaking guests.

Flight back was even better. We got fresh croissants, pains au chocolats and other stuff. We had turbulence and crew had to stop service half inflight but didn't miss to give out the pastries from a basket and water directly out of the bottle for the people they missed. And since they had a lot of pastries left they handed the basket to everyone else for a second round, and that on a 55 minutes flight! Furthemore the captain came into the aisle before departing, taking the PA and greeting everyone on board and explaining details of the flight.

AF's crew is usually mid aged, which on me makes good impression of professionism and souvereignity. I have the impression most of the AF staff takes pride in their job, obvisouly they may be expections, maybe more on the ground than in the air, but I guess they are on the right way and have nothing to envoy about the other big european airlines. I had a better experience than with my regular carrier LH, which is of course a fine airline, too.

Still there is this transit experience. I do understand AF is somehow victim about this dump of an airport. While 2F and 2E are fine, it's still difficult to transit, especially for unused travellers. This will probably change a little once all the Schengen flights will swith to 2F and 2D abandoned, but still.

That said, the dump that 2D used to be changed a lot. Look at this picture, no, this is not the lounge, this is the regular waiting area! There is even an area with a piano!



ADP seems to do the best they can to cope for the short term, and honestly, spending some time in 2D now in these seats with a little table looking at the planes on the apron through the huge windows is quite an okay experience. When we arrived in Frankfurt, staff from their partner airline Delta was waiting at the bus arrival to take short connecting passengers to DTW personally to the connecting flight.

I'm afraid AF is victim of their bad reputation, but in my impression from my flights this changed a lot. I'll fly with them this weekend again, let's see if this will be confirmed.
 
lychemsa
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RE: Air France Have You Really Improved? DUB-CDG-ATH.

Sun Mar 18, 2012 7:26 pm

I like AF. A lot better than US carriers.

However with these large losses I wonder if service standards can be maintained in Y.
 
eicvd
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RE: Air France Have You Really Improved? DUB-CDG-ATH.

Sun Mar 18, 2012 7:34 pm

Hi Philip
As always a great report with great photos too. Nice to see AF using the airbus to DUB over the last few days, had a mix of A319/A320/A321 a/c visit us over the weekend

Quoting OA260 (Thread starter):
After this I cleared security in Terminal 1 and then made my way to Terminal 2 as usual to visit my regular coffee house  

Thought it might have been "The Chocolate Lounge" alright & I guess you were not "too early" going through security  
Quoting OA260 (Reply 1):
the ditched JK fleet.

Saw those yesterday, sad to see but also nice to see airlines we'll never see again. Counted 8 JK a/c, 2 MA 737's & 3 IT A320's.

Thanks for posting  
COYBIB
 
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RE: Air France Have You Really Improved? DUB-CDG-ATH.

Sun Mar 18, 2012 8:57 pm

Hello Philip,

Many thanks for this nice picturesque story. I'm quite glad you offered AF a second chance here. To answer your report title (you've answered it yourself already i know  ): yes indeed they have improved (from your point of view because I've never have had a proper AF flight myself). Now you cannot go wrong on Cityjet, but the real AF has some glitches at times. I'm a bit surprised by the use of an A319 on this route or are there multiple flights daily from CDG?

Quoting OA260 (Thread starter):
They have done a refurb in this area which is alot better then the hole it used to be :

Still I feel it looks like a UFO. T2 is much much nicer of course  

Quoting OA260 (Thread starter):
For me this flight is not a AF flight and a CityJet flight and the service is normally good.

I was just about to say the same.

Quoting OA260 (Thread starter):
Its stuck in the 90's in terms of design.

Indeed, just have a look at those old school TV screens serving as FIDS.

Quoting OA260 (Thread starter):
REG: ?? - ??? ( Does anyone know ? )

According to flight24.com it was EI-RJO.

Sultanils
In thrust we trust.
 
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RE: Air France Have You Really Improved? DUB-CDG-ATH.

Sun Mar 18, 2012 9:45 pm

Hi, Philip.

Bravo! AF did it very well on these flights, nothing else expected to be honest. I am not the biggest fan of the airline, nor CDG, but somehow they always get a special place in my 'heart' since the staff I met were always very polite and friendly, they managed to take me and partner as nonrev's to a French wedding by leaving other 'own airline' nonrev's behind (they had priority), also the service was always friendly on all flights I took on them (including a lot of own paid flights).
I love the design of CDG T2, really nice, good colours together with the wood and concrete design.

I agree, transfers can be a hassle, but also, we being frequent travellers, shouldn't have to much trouble in CDG. Only transferring to 2G domestic transfers can be more time consuming, is my experience.

Well, good meals, attentive crew, also keeping in mind your status on the manifest. Really eye for details in every aspect, no failure to be seen.

Good to hear they got your interest again for future flights.

Eric
"The whole world steps aside for the man who knows where he is going"
 
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RE: Air France Have You Really Improved? DUB-CDG-ATH.

Sun Mar 18, 2012 10:26 pm

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Reply 20):
Hi Phil,

Hey P and thanks for the reply. Heard you looked after Mr G today  
Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Reply 20):
Good to see you giving Air France another chance.

Yes well no point avoiding airlines if they have pulled their socks up .

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Reply 20):
I was in that lounge back in 2004 I think and can honestly say it hasn't changed a bit, judging from your photos!

Indeed nothing has changed its in a time warp.

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Reply 20):
That indeed looks better - I remember it being just a row of portacabins some years ago.

Yes those were awful looking and horrible to walk on also .

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Reply 20):
So they finally found a new owner for these?

Well who knows but something is happening . Sad in a way .

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Reply 20):
Of course one could always argue that if the airport was a bit better signposted and designed with transit passengers in mind these wouldn't be needed...

Yes I thought that too . If they think you need a map then they must realise people have issues finding their way.

Quoting FLIEGER67 (Reply 21):
Hi, Phil,

Hey Markus and thanks for the reply.

Quoting FLIEGER67 (Reply 21):
You know I´am doing that also somewhat frequent and the lounges looking well known to me.
Good pictures by the way.
Now looking forward to you´re ATH sidetrip.

Yes you have reported on them and also wetted my appetite to try them again so well done  
Quoting reifel (Reply 22):
Good Day and thanks a lot for sharing.

Hey thanks for the reply.

Quoting reifel (Reply 22):
I hope you don't mind that I use this report to write about my AF experience on a short haul hop from FRA to CDG and back this weekend.

Not at all and thanks for that very informative post and do keep us up to date with your experience. Will be good to hear.

Quoting lychemsa (Reply 23):
However with these large losses I wonder if service standards can be maintained in Y.

Yes you do wonder what will happen. I guess they realise they need to fight for business rather than taking the traffic for granted.

Quoting eicvd (Reply 24):
Hi Philip

Hey Mark  
Quoting eicvd (Reply 24):
Thought it might have been "The Chocolate Lounge" alright & I guess you were not "too early" going through security  

Haha LMAO .... I was there 6 hours before dont worry . That seems like ages ago and I still have to put that report up  
Quoting Sultanils (Reply 25):
Hello Philip,

Hey Nils thanks for the reply.

Quoting Sultanils (Reply 25):
T2 is much much nicer of course  

Yes no agruement there .  
Quoting Sultanils (Reply 25):
Indeed, just have a look at those old school TV screens serving as FIDS.

I know it was a blast from the past for sure.

Quoting Sultanils (Reply 25):
According to flight24.com it was EI-RJO.

Thanks Nils always good to confirm and know .

Quoting airbuseric (Reply 26):
Hi, Philip.

Hey Eric ,

Quoting airbuseric (Reply 26):
AF did it very well on these flights, nothing else expected to be honest. I am not the biggest fan of the airline, nor CDG, but somehow they always get a special place in my 'heart' since the staff I met were always very polite and friendly,

Well after your feedback before my flights you reassured me alot so I was expecting something decent as I know you would not fly on crap .

Quoting airbuseric (Reply 26):
Good to hear they got your interest again for future flights.

Yes indeed I will try them again especially as they have renewed my Elite Plus til 2013  
 
767747
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RE: Air France Have You Really Improved? DUB-CDG-ATH.

Sun Mar 18, 2012 10:29 pm

Another good report, Phil.

Looks like AF treated you well this time - Nice looking meals, easy connections, clean planes; pretty good travel days!

Wow, CDG looks like a mess to transit through - We are thinking of visiting a friend in France next year, and thus might have to fly through there. Looks like a confusing airport just by the pictures!

Thanks for sharing.

Matthew
I love to fly!
 
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RE: Air France Have You Really Improved? DUB-CDG-ATH.

Sun Mar 18, 2012 10:47 pm

Quoting 767747 (Reply 28):

Hi Matthew thanks for the reply. I dont know what it is with CDG. Ive flown through most major airports workdwide and they all seem easy enough to navigate. Plenty of times through CDG and I still dont feel confident of knowing how to get from A to B without maps and pre planning. I never want a short connection so its three hours between flights minimum for me at CDG. Maybe its the lay out thats confusing. The lines for the transfer buses were long so sometimes better to walk.
 
reifel
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RE: Air France Have You Really Improved? DUB-CDG-ATH.

Sun Mar 18, 2012 11:35 pm

Quoting OA260 (Reply 29):
Hi Matthew thanks for the reply. I dont know what it is with CDG. Ive flown through most major airports workdwide and they all seem easy enough to navigate. Plenty of times through CDG and I still dont feel confident of knowing how to get from A to B without maps and pre planning. I never want a short connection so its three hours between flights minimum for me at CDG. Maybe its the lay out thats confusing. The lines for the transfer buses were long so sometimes better to walk.

Yes, it is confusing. During Daytime (I guess til around 4 pm) you can take airside busses that will bring you from 2D or 2G to both piers of 2E. This is cool.
You'll better avoid the landside busses (unless you need to go to 2G, as usually walking between 2D/E/F/C (where AF operates) is faster. The thing is that you will always need to reclear security since you walk landside between concourses. That's ok if you arrive from nonschengen, as in all "better layout" european airports you would need security, too, but if you arrive i.e. in 2D from FRA and continue from 2F to BCN you would need to go landside, walk for maximum 10 minutes, and reclear security in 2F. That's lousy since in airports like MUC (or others) you wouldn't need to do that.

That said, situation should improve in Fall, wenn all Schengen operations will move to 2F. in above example connections will be hasslefree within the same terminal (which is modern). For connecting flights to 2E the path is quite easy, too.

Aeroports de Paris as well as Airfrance offer good connecting guides on their websites. Furthermore, if you just follow the signs and have enough time, you should be fine (although once arrived at your onward gate you'd probably have no idea where the hell you have just walked through *g*). I feel sorry for AF that they need to operate in such an horrible lay out airport, I guess their trying to do the best they can with what they got.

I guess from fall things will get better. With only 2E and 2F (plus a little 2D, I'll leave 2G aside, not much passengers there) in operation, transit will not be worse than in FRA i.e. (while certainly still not world class as in MUC).
I'm not an airline business specialist, but they could tremendiously change the reputation of CDG being complicated to transit through with some kind of advertisement campaigns "now travel hassle free within same terminal and no security check within Schengen Europe" etc (not sure if it makes sense financialwise though), and they should put some "let me help you" staff members with good - especially German, spanish and italian language skills - in strategic good locations, i.e. in arrivals of 2F and 2E and inbetween to show people the way. I really think they are on a good way. 2E and 2F are two fine terminals (while not being Singapore still ok for worldwide standards) and as far as I remember they have implemented a system of priority lanes for customs and security for short connection passengers at these 2 terminals. Just a few thoughts from my side.
 
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RE: Air France Have You Really Improved? DUB-CDG-ATH.

Sun Mar 18, 2012 11:39 pm

Hi Phil,

Thank you for another great TR. I am glad your AF flights were fine. I think a 3+ hour flight should be hot meal, but i guess a quality cold meal is better than nasty hot meal. AF service is quite good, and i think they are one of the few airlines, if not the only one, to serve champagne in economy class.

Thank you for posting
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deltamartin
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RE: Air France Have You Really Improved? DUB-CDG-ATH.

Mon Mar 19, 2012 12:25 am

Hi Philip!

Nice reports as usual!
Looks like AF took well care of you!

Quoting OA260 (Thread starter):
Oh yes the Chocolate lounge never fails to impress. I have a loyalty card here now Another few visits and they owe me a free choice

If I'm ever at DUB I must remember to go there!  
Quoting OA260 (Thread starter):
A nice little snack :

Both lounges at CDG looks quite nice. You made me hungry!

Martin
 
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RE: Air France Have You Really Improved? DUB-CDG-ATH.

Mon Mar 19, 2012 12:36 am

Quoting reifel (Reply 30):
Yes, it is confusing. During Daytime (I guess til around 4 pm) you can take airside busses that will bring you from 2D or 2G to both piers of 2E. This is cool.

WOW you certainly know CDG and all the ins and outs . Confuses me just reading it lol..   I like the airport hotel ( Sheraton ) , its very handy and easy to access for night stopovers. Also the rail into the centre of Paris is easy too. So it does have its plus points.

Quoting flyboy_se (Reply 31):
Hi Phil,

Hey P thanks for the reply.  
Quoting flyboy_se (Reply 31):
Thank you for another great TR. I am glad your AF flights were fine. I think a 3+ hour flight should be hot meal, but i guess a quality cold meal is better than nasty hot meal. AF service is quite good, and i think they are one of the few airlines, if not the only one, to serve champagne in economy class.

Do they still serve Champs on EU flights? I didnt see any . Maybe its just longhaul Y these days ?

Quoting deltamartin (Reply 32):
Hi Philip!

Hi Martin .

Quoting deltamartin (Reply 32):
If I'm ever at DUB I must remember to go there!  

For sure its a nice place and they dont charge the earth .

Quoting deltamartin (Reply 32):
Both lounges at CDG looks quite nice. You made me hungry!

LOL... the roast beef at the lounge in 2E was lovely. I could have eaten the whole dish .
 
PlaneHunter
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RE: Air France Have You Really Improved? DUB-CDG-ATH.

Mon Mar 19, 2012 7:33 am

Hi Philip,

nice report, even though I was not able to load all pictures. But I guess I have seen a selection of the most important ones.

Quoting OA260 (Thread starter):
Paris CDG Airport has never been a favourite of mine and never will be , I have found it not the nicest airports in Europe to navigate and transit through and would never book a short connection through it.

I can only agree.

Quoting OA260 (Thread starter):
and no hot choice would be offered on this longer route but I have to say the meal was well presented and more important tasted very good. The service was with a smile and the drinks were of a good quality.

Both meals look very good - better than C Class meals on various carriers. And I'd take a good cold meal over an average hot meal any day.


PH
Nothing's worse than flying the same reg twice!
 
gabrielchew
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RE: Air France Have You Really Improved? DUB-CDG-ATH.

Mon Mar 19, 2012 10:03 am

Hey Phil, nice report!

Quoting OA260 (Thread starter):

I could have gone with the normal safe options of LX A3 LH etc... but I decided I wanted to give Air France a try again .

Brave of you to try AF – good that it worked out well

Quoting OA260 (Reply 1):
I was surprised at how little connecting passengers were boarding for destinations beyond CDG .

They know how awful it is to connect at CDG so thriought it better to fly elsewhere?

Quoting OA260 (Reply 2):
Not a bad offering and the muffins whilst not Chocolate lounge standard were quite enjoyable. I had the Walnut one which was fresh. The FA's also came round oferring seconds but I declined .

Catering on the CDG looks a bit less than on the LCY route out of DUB

Quoting OA260 (Thread starter):
As I entered the lounge I was greeted in French to which I replied ''Hi'' . I was then greeted with ''Welcome to the lounge Mr OA260 please make yourself at home''. I have to say I was taken by surprise at such a welcome based on past experiences. It instantly brought a smile to my face and a feel good factor. I thanked the lounge agent and proceeded into the lounge.

Lounge looks nice – thumbs up for the staff too

Quoting OA260 (Thread starter):
The flight was 80% full and a guy took the seat on the aisle. The FA came to him before we pushed back and told him he could move to the row in front which was totally free as it would give us more space. This was nice as we would both have a row of three to ourselves.

Nice to see the FA proactively helping make some space for pax

Quoting OA260 (Thread starter):
Soon after the crew came around with these cold trays. Now I knew AF catering was not the same standard as A3 OA TK BA etc... and no hot choice would be offered on this longer route but I have to say the meal was well presented and more important tasted very good. The service was with a smile and the drinks were of a good quality.

I’d rather have a good cold meal than a bad hot one.

Quoting OA260 (Thread starter):
Just then the head FA came to me and had a printed passenger list in her hand. She said ''Hello Mr OA260'' ( handed me a pillow and smiled ) . ''I just wanted to check that all is ok with you ? '' I said yes everything was perfect and she invited me to complete a survey. I was very impressed with this and quite unexpected.

Great service

Quoting OA260 (Thread starter):
The crew then came around before landing with these guides to anyone connecting at CDG. The crew had a list of connecting passengers. They included to DUB ( Me ) , DUS , HEL , MAD. We were all given these and the crew marked the exact terminal we needed to go to . I have to say this was impressive and the crew really went out of their way to explain how to transfer.

Clearly AF realised how complicated the set up is in CDG and were brainstorming ways to make it less awful
http://my.flightmemory.com/shefgab Upcoming flights: AMS-RIX-BUD-VDA,ETH-TLV-FCO-LHR,STN-TXL-LCY,LTN-CPH-LTN,LGW-SZG,MUC-LHR
 
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RE: Air France Have You Really Improved? DUB-CDG-ATH.

Mon Mar 19, 2012 1:22 pm

Quoting PlaneHunter (Reply 34):
Hi Philip,

Hey Udo , thanks for the reply.

Quoting PlaneHunter (Reply 34):
nice report, even though I was not able to load all pictures. But I guess I have seen a selection of the most important ones.

Shame about that not sure why . Sometimes I notice Photobucket plays up if lots of people are looking at the same images sometimes. Even on my old work PC last night it loaded which was surprising as its not good at all. Maybe there was an issue with photobucket at the time, I doubt its your PC unless you have lots in the cache.

Quoting PlaneHunter (Reply 34):
And I'd take a good cold meal over an average hot meal any day.

Indeed thats my theory also .  
Quoting gabrielchew (Reply 35):
Hey Phil, nice report!

Hey Gab thanks for the reply.

Quoting gabrielchew (Reply 35):
They know how awful it is to connect at CDG so thriought it better to fly elsewhere?

True I guess ZRH LHR FRA are better options for alot of people including me .

Quoting gabrielchew (Reply 35):
Nice to see the FA proactively helping make some space for pax

Yes its nice when that happens . I couldnt really tell the guy to move myself LOL... although I could have moved to the free row in front if he had not moved.
 
MSS658
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RE: Air France Have You Really Improved? DUB-CDG-ATH.

Mon Mar 19, 2012 10:51 pm

Hi Philip

Great trip report, thanks for sharing!
Seems like AF really did a good job on your trip. I wish I could say the same of my AF flights the passed 5 years. Air France is a carrier not to fly soon again for me. Here is a link of my 747 flight from Boston in 2010
A Short Hop On A Big Bird! (by MSS658 Feb 27 2011 in Trip Reports)


Greetings
Marc
Next trip report: Well worn A330s and Hassle free MUC transfer
 
SR4ever
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RE: Air France Have You Really Improved? DUB-CDG-ATH.

Mon Mar 19, 2012 11:01 pm

Thanks Philipp, for this new TR.

Actually a big suprise to me that you are FB Platinum, as I thought you were Star Gold "only"  
Quoting roberts87 (Reply 9):
I believe that when the second satelite terminal for T2E opens this fall, T2D will be closed down and refurbished
Quoting OA260 (Reply 11):
Thats good to hear and I look forward to seeing it. If all the terminals are brought up to the standard of 2E then it will be a vast improvement.

2D now looks quite old-fashioned, a world away from wat it was when opening into 2 stages (1989 and 1992). The Lounge cries out for a complete re-styling, but that's not gonna come too quickly. Thta's one of the reasons why I no longer fly LG+AF via CDG.

Once S4 opens this summer, all AF flights will be concentrated on T2F (Schengen), T2G (Schengen) and T 2E (non-Schengen). Schengen-to-Schengen and Schengen-to-nonSchengen connections will also be exempt from security checks, at last...

T2B will be refurbished from 2012 to 2015, and probably be dedicated to Easy Jet.

T2A and T2C are under refurbishment and extension until Summer 2013

T2D will remain in operation, albeit at a much lower scale, from Summer 2012 until 2015. Once T2B refurbishment is complete, it will be mothballed, refurbished and re-opened by 2019.

T1 refurbisment is now nearing completion, only 2 satelites are yet to refurbished.

So, within the next 2 years, CDG will already offer a vastly improved travelling experience, fingers crossed. But ground transportation will unfortunately remain an issue for the whole of this decade 
 
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RE: Air France Have You Really Improved? DUB-CDG-ATH.

Tue Mar 20, 2012 12:45 am

Quoting MSS658 (Reply 37):
Hi Philip

Hey Marc thanks for the reply.

Quoting MSS658 (Reply 37):
Seems like AF really did a good job on your trip. I wish I could say the same of my AF flights the passed 5 years. Air France is a carrier not to fly soon again for me. Here is a link of my 747 flight from Boston in 2010
A Short Hop On A Big Bird! (by MSS658 Feb 27 2011 in Trip Reports)

Shame AF didnt offer you decent service but I know first hand how AF have been in the past with me so I dont doubt for a minute your bad experiences. They were once prepared to leave my Father lying on the floor in CDG when they were legally obliged to provide hotel overnight for him. He had status with them at the time also and they were not willing to assist at all. At the time I was working in travel and a call to a senior manager in Air France quickly focused their minds but it was a nasty thing to do . As I said I have a history of bad times with AF but in fairness I gave them another chance and they didnt fail me this time. Maybe a Leopard can change its spots   Maybe they realise service is vital seeing as they are leaking millions of Euro .

Quoting SR4ever (Reply 38):
Thanks Philipp, for this new TR.

Actually a big suprise to me that you are FB Platinum, as I thought you were Star Gold "only"  

Hi thanks for reading and responding.   Yes I have it now til 2013  
Quoting SR4ever (Reply 38):
2D now looks quite old-fashioned, a world away from wat it was when opening into 2 stages (1989 and 1992). The Lounge cries out for a complete re-styling, but that's not gonna come too quickly. Thta's one of the reasons why I no longer fly LG+AF via CDG.

Once S4 opens this summer, all AF flights will be concentrated on T2F (Schengen), T2G (Schengen) and T 2E (non-Schengen). Schengen-to-Schengen and Schengen-to-nonSchengen connections will also be exempt from security checks, at last...

T2B will be refurbished from 2012 to 2015, and probably be dedicated to Easy Jet.

T2A and T2C are under refurbishment and extension until Summer 2013

T2D will remain in operation, albeit at a much lower scale, from Summer 2012 until 2015. Once T2B refurbishment is complete, it will be mothballed, refurbished and re-opened by 2019.

Thanks for that information . It certainly seems that in future the experience will be alot better. Not having to do all that security will certainly save time. Hopefully the ATH flights will move to a nicer place with better lounges too.


Also I forgot to answer a question about the A319 service. There are 3 daily flights with AF ATH-CDG-ATH and they put on a A320 when needed in peak seasons.
 
infodesk
Posts: 1462
Joined: Thu May 18, 2006 11:06 pm

RE: Air France Have You Really Improved? DUB-CDG-ATH.

Tue Mar 20, 2012 11:26 am

Hi Philip,

Good to hear about your positive experience with AF. I've only done 4 flights with them, which were more than ok and have another couple coming up. Transiting at CDG, well, not the best of airports to change planes at but great that it all worked out. The offerings in the lounges look rather tasty.

Quoting OA260 (Thread starter):
Once every 6 weeks I take 4 days off work in a row and it works out really well. I dont need to touch my annual leave and it gives me the chance to travel. So this time I decided to pop back to Greece to see the family for a few days

Your routine sounds just like mine......!

Quoting OA260 (Thread starter):
Oh yes the Chocolate lounge never fails to impress. I have a loyalty card here now Another few visits and they owe me a free choice

I think a photo of your cake at the Chocolate Lounge is becoming a must in your reports!

Quoting OA260 (Thread starter):
Not a bad offering and the muffins whilst not Chocolate lounge standard were quite enjoyable. I had the Walnut one which was fresh. The FA's also came round oferring seconds but I declined

Muffin looks tasty, just right for that sort of length of flight.

Quoting OA260 (Thread starter):
The crew then came around before landing with these guides to anyone connecting at CDG. The crew had a list of connecting passengers. They included to DUB ( Me ) , DUS , HEL , MAD. We were all given these and the crew marked the exact terminal we needed to go to . I have to say this was impressive and the crew really went out of their way to explain how to transfer.

A nice touch by the crew, something which I'm sure does help those who bother to read it.

The cold meals on the CDG-ATH sectors are also far more impressive than I would have expected. Good on AF.

Hope you enjoyed your time with your family

Happy flying
Infodesk   
"Do nothing in haste, look well to each step and from the beginning think what may be the end" - Edward Whymper
 
SR4ever
Posts: 388
Joined: Sat Mar 20, 2010 6:19 pm

RE: Air France Have You Really Improved? DUB-CDG-ATH.

Tue Mar 20, 2012 7:58 pm

Quoting OA260 (Reply 39):
Hi thanks for reading and responding. Yes I have it now til 2013

Would it be undiscreet to ask you how you have earned Platinum status, as your TR here are primarily about Star Alliance members?  
Quoting OA260 (Reply 39):
Thanks for that information . It certainly seems that in future the experience will be alot better. Not having to do all that security will certainly save time.

This will imply extended hours for the airside shuttle circuits.

As part of the T2A-T2C refurbishment, a new building is also under construction in the spare area between both terminals. It will host a centralised security check area, immigration lanes, new shops, and on the top floors, space for lounges with a view to the apron..

This will release quite much space in the current T2A and T2B buildings.

ADP is also rumoured to eye the same something similar for T2B and T2D.
 
LAXorLGWonDL
Posts: 99
Joined: Tue Jul 24, 2007 2:39 am

RE: Air France Have You Really Improved? DUB-CDG-ATH.

Tue Mar 20, 2012 8:26 pm

Great pics and detail -- thank you for sharing your experience! The Chocolate Lounge looks fantastic!

 
Next Up: STR, JFK, ATL, TPA, ANC
 
lukeyboy95
Posts: 1060
Joined: Tue Apr 29, 2008 7:07 pm

RE: Air France Have You Really Improved? DUB-CDG-ATH.

Tue Mar 20, 2012 8:29 pm

Hi Philip.

Thanks for another fun filled report. That was a good incite so thanks.

Quoting OA260 (Thread starter):
During the A380 AF LHR-CDG promotions I took them and have to say warmed to them a bit after a good experience.

Well yes, I was careful not to be duped too much by this tour de force show. That said, everything looked great for your sector.

I am a particular fan of Citijet, somehow it appeals to me quite alot. It is quite business-like.

I liked seeing the Loganair/ Flybe special livery (sticker) jet. Nice.

Rgds

Luke
Breaking down the stereotypes - one by one
 
adamspotter
Posts: 1191
Joined: Tue Feb 15, 2011 10:06 pm

RE: Air France Have You Really Improved? DUB-CDG-ATH.

Tue Mar 20, 2012 8:39 pm

Hi Phillip,
Nice trip report with some nice lounges and good flights with AF!

Quoting OA260 (Thread starter):
Oh yes the Chocolate lounge never fails to impress.

Looks very good indeed!

cheers,
adamspotter // Brendan
 
User avatar
OA260
Topic Author
Posts: 23803
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RE: Air France Have You Really Improved? DUB-CDG-ATH.

Wed Mar 21, 2012 12:07 pm

Quoting infodesk (Reply 40):
Hi Philip,

Hi Hannah  
Quoting infodesk (Reply 40):
have another couple coming up.

Oh thats good I look forward to your comments and report on them .

Quoting infodesk (Reply 40):
Your routine sounds just like mine......!

Haha not a bad routine me thinks  
Quoting infodesk (Reply 40):
I think a photo of your cake at the Chocolate Lounge is becoming a must in your reports!

Yes and lucky my waistline also thinks so as it doesnt do too much damage . Maybe all those airport gate-gate walks helps burn it off  
Quoting infodesk (Reply 40):
A nice touch by the crew, something which I'm sure does help those who bother to read it.

Indeed it is a good idea .

Quoting SR4ever (Reply 41):
Would it be undiscreet to ask you how you have earned Platinum status, as your TR here are primarily about Star Alliance members?  

Hi and thanks for the reply. No its ok you are welcome to know . A few took the offer also. AF offered me a status match and then have also offered me a further one year extenstion on Elite Plus if I took just one flight   Too good to refuse even if I dont fly them that much .

Quoting LAXorLGWonDL (Reply 42):
Great pics and detail -- thank you for sharing your experience! The Chocolate Lounge looks fantastic!

Thanks for the reply and Yes it most certainly is .

Quoting lukeyboy95 (Reply 43):
Hi Philip.

Thanks for another fun filled report. That was a good incite so thanks.

Hey Luke many thanks for your comments.

Quoting lukeyboy95 (Reply 43):
by this tour de force show.

Haha good quote  
Quoting lukeyboy95 (Reply 43):
I am a particular fan of Citijet, somehow it appeals to me quite alot. It is quite business-like.

I like them also but wish they would get rid of those Avros for E Jets . Would be so much better .

Quoting lukeyboy95 (Reply 43):
I liked seeing the Loganair/ Flybe special livery (sticker) jet. Nice.

Yes I love that aircraft and livery.

Quoting adamspotter (Reply 44):
Hi Phillip,

Hi Brendan thanks for the reply.

Quoting adamspotter (Reply 44):
Nice trip report with some nice lounges and good flights with AF!

Glad you liked it and yes the flights were most certainly good.

----

Since I got back I have been impressed with Air Frances follow up by email:

 
JL418
Posts: 401
Joined: Wed Jun 24, 2009 5:20 pm

RE: Air France Have You Really Improved? DUB-CDG-ATH.

Wed Mar 21, 2012 7:13 pm

Hi Philip,

thanks for sharing! I guess that AF is working hard to be back on track, let's hope that the group will eventually return to profitability soon. I think they still have a long way forward but they seem to be going in the right direction, at least by reading your report.

Of the things I've been most impressed about is the food: you said that the quality was good but, honestly, a cold platter on a long-ish European route is quite cheap. I read reports of customer flying in J and being offered, on flights lasting in the region of 1.5 hours, a rather bland box (looking slightly posher than those styrofoam wrappings kebabs hand you out here in the UK) with hardly half a roll in it. It'd been interesting to see what the slop would've been like in Business on your flight.

Onwards to CDG: I guess, of all the major European hubs, is the one winning the infamous "Most hated" title, at least among us. I have to say, however, that I quite like it. Mind you, I have been there only once and got utterly lost looking for my terminal, so lost that one of the CRS had to wear is friendly face and escort me all the way down to the place I was looking for, but 2E looks rather peculiar and I really like its "true airport" feeling.

Looking forward to read again from you but I know it won't be a long wait!

Fabrizio
 
LH4116
Posts: 1183
Joined: Tue Aug 28, 2007 4:39 am

RE: Air France Have You Really Improved? DUB-CDG-ATH.

Wed Mar 21, 2012 7:54 pm

Hi Philip, great report! So glad you finally had a good experience on Air France. To me it has been nothing but good over the years, except for once when the baggage handlers broke my mother's painting. And of course the countless times they've lost our luggage at CDG, and the dull hours spent at T2D. But since they moved to 2F it's been nothing but good, at least during the past 6 years.

Quoting OA260 (Thread starter):
Once every 6 weeks I take 4 days off work in a row and it works out really well.

So you work 7 days a week nonstop for 6 weeks? Wow you really are a hard working man  
Quoting OA260 (Thread starter):
They have offered me bad and rude service and left me stranded in CDG a few times without assistance.

Very sorry to hear that. I'm guessing back in the days you didn't have status with them? hehe

Quoting OA260 (Thread starter):
The agent taged my suitcase and then the box with the speakers. She asked me to take these to outsized baggage which I did .

Hmm, I still think the STAR PRIORITY tags look much nicer 
Quoting OA260 (Thread starter):
Another few visits and they owe me a free choice  

LOL another few!? Shouldn't they have owed you that free choice long ago, after all times you've been there? Or did you recently redeem it, and now collecting up for the new?  
Quoting OA260 (Reply 2):
Not a bad offering and the muffins whilst not Chocolate lounge standard were quite enjoyable. I had the Walnut one which was fresh.

Hmm, I had always thought CityJet would serve those generous sandwiches on that route. But the muffin looked nice and sufficient.

Quoting OA260 (Reply 2):
The FA's also came round oferring seconds but I declined .

No kidding, seems like you've had your fair share of muffins for the week 
Quoting OA260 (Reply 2):
''Welcome to the lounge Mr OA260 please make yourself at home''.

Ah how I would love to hear those words, a dream come true for me, haha. But the AF staff really seem to offer some good recognition to their Platinum members, something the *A airlines aren't good at I've heard.

Quoting OA260 (Reply 2):
Sadly the treatment center was closed.

Again amazed, had no idea AF had adopted such luxuries. Seems almost up to par with the OW carriers. Were all visitors regardless of destination/cabin allowed to use the facilities?

Quoting OA260 (Reply 3):
Now I knew AF catering was not the same standard as A3 OA TK BA etc... and no hot choice would be offered on this longer route but I have to say the meal was well presented and more important tasted very good.

Yes, a little bit surprised they didn't offer the more generous tray. On the other hand I'm a huge fan of those cold meals AF serve, and despite them being of smaller portions these days I've always found them sufficient enough, and of great taste and quality.

Quoting OA260 (Reply 5):
The middle row remained free thankfully so I was happy to have the space.

Huh, seems like there was some sort of seatblocking. Maybe FBG get one seat blocked, and FBP get two  
Quoting OA260 (Reply 6):
I lied and said yes as I knew he was going to take me on a tour which I didnt need.

Indeed a very nice gesture of him, nice and personal service. AF really seem to have responded on the criticism from the pax about the french stereotype being arrogant, unwelcoming and rude. Suppose the tour would've been quite awkward for you coming off as a rookie, despite being a well seasoned traveler for a near decade?  
Quoting OA260 (Reply 6):
I didnt have all this food in one go   I was in the lounge for a few hours .

While the food offerings don't seem to be near as good as the *A lounges, and not to speak about the slightly sparse drinks offering (well Champagne that is not locked up behind a bar is a very big plus, but I'm talking about the lack of Bailey's!!!). Did they have an additional buffet with the hot food?

"Wheels Up!"
//Jonas
SAS Plus is Business Class made faux!
 
Knightsofmalta
Posts: 1754
Joined: Fri Nov 25, 2005 10:51 pm

RE: Air France Have You Really Improved? DUB-CDG-ATH.

Thu Mar 22, 2012 10:29 am

Hi Philip

That was quite an eye opener. So far I've never been too impressed with Air France but they appear to have improved, judging by your pictures. The meal looks rather tasty but it's a pity they have to serve it in such an ugly molded plastic tray.

I was also quite impressed that the crew came round with personalised maps of CDG to help connecting passengers find their way. On the one hand it is certainly good service by AF, on the other hand it makes you wonder why Aeroports do Paris were seemingly unable to build a more passenger friendly airport to start with.

Cheers,
William
 
signol
Posts: 2652
Joined: Tue Oct 30, 2007 5:18 pm

RE: Air France Have You Really Improved? DUB-CDG-ATH.

Thu Mar 22, 2012 3:47 pm

Hi Phil,

as a former AF employee I have, and will always have, a soft spot for them   My recent flights (1xreturn, 1x one way) have have always been good, the transfer experience varying from good to bad - 2E to 2F.

Quoting OA260 (Thread starter):
I have a loyalty card here now Another few visits and they owe me a free choice

Nice to see your favourite cafe offering a loyalty scheme - something for all the positive publicity you've given them on here?  

I'm intrigued by your FB status, with so few AF flights compared to LX, LH etc... Plenty of unreported KL ones?  

Glad to see the service top notch. That's one thing I noticed on AF, helpful (usually) staff. (note to self: must complete my AF report!)

Good too that the cold meal was of a high standard, and not just a sandwich. I'd be happy with a cold, good meal over a hot sandwich any day (looking at you, TP).

Excellent report, all in!

Thanks again

signol
Flights booked: NWI-AMS-JNB-DUR, JNB-AMS-NWI

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