Cold Anglo reception for Air France

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Maybe it was just too experimental, maybe it was the way it had no local feed on the UK side and maybe it was just that old Anglo aversion to most things Gallic but Air France is ending one of its (and SkyTeam’s) Open Skies innovations: a non-stop flight between London’s Heathrow and LAX.  The flight ends November 6, and Air France will instead begin a nonstop between Heathrow and New York JFK in next year’s high season. Ally Delta has two dailies on that route. Interestingly, the news comes as Air France celebrates its 75th anniversary.

A friend of ours from the UK liked the Air France flight because it was so empty that he was usually able to get an upgrade. It was cheaper, he says, for a French flyer to take the Eurostar “Chunnel” train from Paris to London than fly Paris-LAX. There is plenty of competition between LA and London: both BA and Virgin Atlantic fly the routes and so does American Airlines.

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Each of these carriers has some strong feed at one or the other endpoints, although Virgin lacks the hub connections of the two oneworld partners. Somehow the SkyTeam presence at LAX simply didn’t help. The Air France news comes as British Airways says it will move its Atlanta-London service from Gatwick to Heathrow airport.

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4 Responses to Cold Anglo reception for Air France

  1. R Maxwell October 9, 2008 at 9:57 pm #

    Or maybe it was because, with an angled lie-flat seat in business, and narrow, 10-abreast economy seating, the product was inferior to Air New Zealand, Virgin and BA…

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