Air France pursues its move upmarket strategy


IFTM Top Resa Tourism Trade Fair - Air France pursues its move upmarket strategy

On 20 September 2016, during the 38th edition of the IFTM Top Resa tourism trade fair, Air France presented its on-going strategy to upgrade its products and services and unveiled its new offering.

“In an environment conducive to exchange, this trade fair offers the ideal opportunity to pursue our relationships with our commercial partners in the tourism sector. We share the same difficulties facing tourists’ disenchantment with France. Today more than ever, we wish to preserve these close ties.” stated Jean-Marc Janaillac, Chairman and CEO of Air France-KLM during the inauguration of the trade fair.

Frédéric Gagey, Chairman and CEO of Air France, added: “Our latest-generation cabins, launched in 2014, have been highly praised by our customers. Air France’s significant progress in the rankings of the best global airlines and in several particularly competitive categories reflects the importance of these investments for travellers. We must continue this momentum to offer our customers an easier, more personalized and more enjoyable travel experience.”


On 9 January 2017, Air France will operate the first commercial flight of a Boeing 787 between Paris-Charles de Gaulle and Cairo in Egypt.For Air France and its customers, the Boeing 787 will provide many different assets:

  • the best of Air France with the latest travel cabins in Business (30 seats), Premium Economy (21 seats) and Economy (225 seats);
  • Wi-Fi on board;
  • more space and comfort with the new Premium Economy seats;
  • windows that are about 30% larger than on similar aircraft;
  • reduced fuel consumption of about 20% compared to previous generations of aircraft;
  • a significant reduction in CO2 emissions (approximately 20%) and noise emissions.

To introduce this new aircraft to its customers, Air France will be operating four special welcome flights on 7 and 8 January 2017 from Paris to Paris, lasting 2 hours 30 minutes. Tickets will go on sale in early December.


Since May 2016, Air France has been offering table service in the Business cabin on selected flights from Paris-Charles de Gaulle to Singapore and New York-JFK.

With this new service, Air France welcomes its passengers in the same way as in fine French restaurants. With the best in terms of personalized service and aesthetics, Air France crews take individual orders from each passenger. On board, the table is set for individual table service, like in a restaurant. In this way, there are no more trays and the presence of the serving trolleys is limited. Each dish is prepared by the crew to highlight the culinary delights and service excellence in the sky.

In the same way as the best restaurants and to accompany this new table service, Air France has created specific training for its cabin crew, in collaboration with the Paul Bocuse Institute.

In light of the success of this new service, Air France will be offering it on flights to Tokyo-Haneda by the end of the year. It will then be deployed on many other routes in 2017.


Air France is renewing the seats in the Premium Economy cabin to provide its customers with even more comfort. Redesigned in close collaboration with its customers, Air France’s new Premium Economy seat is the first step in a series of improvements.As from 9 January 2017, on board the first commercial flight of the Boeing 787, passengers in the Premium Economy cabin will enjoy more space thanks to:

  • A 2.5 cm-wider seat, with more comfortable seat cushions and a reinforced lower back;
  • More legroom and an increased seat pitch of 5 cm;
  • A fixed-shell seat, popular with the company’s customers;
  • A seat recline of 130 ° to promote the quality of sleep;
  • More space between seats with a central armrest measuring an additional 2.55 cm;
  • A groove cut into the seat table enabling passengers to keep their book or digital tablet straight;
  • Many other practical and innovative features.



On Air France’s long-haul routes, 36 Boeing 777 will be equipped with new cabins and will serve 32 destinations this winter. In total, by August 2017, 44 Boeing 777 will be retrofitted. As of winter 2017, Air France will begin the move upmarket on its Airbus A330 for expected delivery in winter 2018. At the same time, the company is studying the refurbishment of its Airbus A380 with possible deployment starting in 2019.

On medium-haul routes, the move upmarket of the cabins is also continuing with 24 Airbus A320 modified by the end of October 2016. In November, Air France will begin modifications to its 11 Airbus A321.

Tuesday 20 September 2016


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