Air France celebrates 50 years of presence in China



In September 1966, Air France launched its Paris-Shanghai route and became the first European carrier to serve the People’s Republic of China. This shared history has led Air France and its staff to have a strong attachment to this country.

Air France ensures it adapts to the culture of Chinese customers and provides excellent personalized service combined with products developed exclusively for flights to and from China.

Air France-KLM is the leading European carrier in terms of capacity from Europe to China and offers 90 weekly flights linking the hubs at Paris-Charles de Gaulle and Amsterdam-Schiphol to 9 destinations in Greater China: Beijing, Chengdu, Guangzhou, Hangzhou, Hong Kong, Shanghai, Taipei, Wuhan and Xiamen.

Over the past five decades, Air France-KLM has also strengthened its network. With its Chinese airline partners China Southern Airlines, China Eastern Airlines and Xiamen Airlines, the Air France-KLM group offers up to 132 weekly flights to China.

On this occasion, Jean-Marc Janaillac, Chairman and CEO of Air France-KLM declared:

We are very proud to be in Shanghai to celebrate 50 years of service between France and the People’s Republic of China. Air France has been present in mainland China since 1966 and has been investing continuously to strengthen its network connecting Europe to China. Air France and KLM were the first European airlines to fly to Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou, Hangzhou Chengdu, Wuhan and Xiamen. Today, Air France-KLM is the leading European carrier in terms of capacity from Europe to China and we will maintain our focus to further enhance our products, services and destination possibilities in China.

Frédéric Gagey, Chairman and CEO of Air France added:

The first flight from France to China is at the heart of the Company’s history. Since then, we have been continuously striving to share our most innovative products on our Chinese routes: new travel cabins, personalized services, products developed exclusively for Chinese customers, the latest new aircraft etc. We must continue this momentum and help strengthen Air France’s presence in Greater China, where the company has already received several awards for its products and services.

France – China, 50 years of history

In September 1966, the Boeing 707 “Château de Cheverny” launched the Paris-Shanghai route. Three different crews shared the 23-hour flight, with stopovers in Athens, Cairo, Karachi and Phnom Penh. Air France became the first European airline to fly to the People’s Republic of China.
Find out all about the 50-year history of flights from France to China at

The best of Air France to China

Since 1966, Air France has implemented tailor-made services for all customers travelling to and from China, before, during and after their trip.

At Paris-Charles de Gaulle airport, a special team of staff speaking Mandarin and Cantonese are available to assist customers with check-in, on arrival and when they have a connection.

On certain flights between Paris-Charles de Gaulle and China, customers can enjoy the latest Air France travel cabins, including the La Première designer suite, a cocoon in the sky in Business class, and comfort for all passengers in Premium Economy and Economy.

Crews have adapted their services especially to welcome Chinese passengers. Air France has launched an awareness programme to increase knowledge of Chinese culture among its flight attendants. This constant desire to provide excellent, welcoming service is embodied in both the body language and respectful language used. Furthermore, Chinese interpreters are present on board all the company’s flights to and from China.

During the trip, Air France takes great care to adapt itself to its passengers’ culture or diet and offers refined Chinese dishes as well as a truly French gastronomic experience. During the trip, the crew distribute menus that have been translated into Chinese to all passengers.

With refined dining, technological innovations and many other personalized services, Air France ensures unique moments of pleasure on board for all passengers.

Thursday 8 September 2016


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