FX Excursions

FX Excursions offers the chance for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in destinations around the world.

Review: Air France

by Kimberly Inlander

Feb 27, 2023

PHOTO: © AIR FRANCE

January/February 2023

ON THE GROUND: After an uneventful ride from our home in Pennsylvania to New York JFK (always a happy occurrence), my husband and I quickly checked in for our overnight flight to Paris. The excitement level was high, as this was our first time returning to Europe post- pandemic.

At the Air France lounge, we made our way to the second floor and enjoyed some light snacks and drinks. While we didn’t have time, a Clarins Spa recently opened in the lounge, and business- and first-class passengers can enjoy a pre-flight treatment. We should have waited for the boarding announcement but instead made our way to the gate on our own time and ended up waiting in a long line, as boarding was slightly delayed.

In Paris we boarded a Viking longship for an eight-day cruise of the River Seine, Paris to Normandy. Viking arranged our transportation to and from the airport, and we had quite a bit of time at the airport before our flight home. Again, check- in and security were a breeze with our priority access. At the CDG lounge, we found a high-top table and settled in. The food here was delicious, with a much more abundant — and tastier — selection than in New York. We both went back for seconds.

PRE-FLIGHT: Days before our flight, we were able to select our meals. My husband opted for the beef dish on the way to Paris, and I chose the shrimp option. I did still peruse the menu that waited for us at the seat, alongside the amenity kit and a blanket and pillow, in case I changed my mind; flight attendants did come around to confirm our selections. Ample overhead space ensured we securely stowed our luggage; flight attendants hung our jackets and noise-cancelling headphones awaited us in a little cubby at our seat, which also included storage space and a mirror. We were greeted with a drink and hot towel before take-off. The experience was much the same as we settled in for our return flight to New York a week later.

IN-FLIGHT: Our flight to Paris took off around 6 p.m. I always forget how it can be a challenge to get a good night of sleep on overnight flights from the U.S. East Coast to Europe simply because of timing. Once in the air at a safe cruising altitude, dinner service began and took about an hour. At about six hours for the flight, that only leaves about three hours to sleep, so my husband, hoping to sleep for the bulk of the trip, opted to skip breakfast service. I settled in and watched Elvis, dozing on and off throughout. My husband put his seat in the lie-flat position, popped on his eyeshade and slept. We were in the middle of the 1-2-1 configuration, and a privacy screen can go up between the two middle seats in case passengers aren’t traveling together. We kept ours down, but the placement of the button that moves the screen was in a spot where we both kept hitting it inadvertently with our elbows, sending it up accidentally more than a few times. The service was efficient and welcoming, but I wouldn’t call it overly effusive.

We returned to New York on a day flight, so neither of us was keen to sleep. The Boeing 777 featured an older business class but still offered lie-flat seats, ample amenities and abundant storage space. And this time, the divider was removable. The flight attendant stored it for us, and we didn’t have to worry about hitting anything by accident. An unattended minor was in the aisle seat of the row in front of me, and I watched as the staff went out of their way to accommodate him and make sure he was well cared for. The service on this flight was friendlier and just as efficient. We both enjoyed lunch and a snack of an egg salad sandwich shortly before landing, while I watched Jennifer Lopez and Owen Wilson in Marry Me and old episodes of Cold Case; my husband chose a Nicolas Cage flick. Before we knew it, we were landing and already missing our time in France and on board Air France.

TOP TAKEAWAYS:

  • We flew to Paris from New York on an Airbus A350 with a newer business- class design. On the return flight, we were on a Boeing 777 with an older business-class layout. A newer business-class layout on the 777 went into service on the New York route after our flight. This review touches on aspects of both flights, as the A350 cabin was superior, but the service on the 777 flight stood out more. I can’t wait to try the new 777 business-class cabin someday soon.
  • Upon arrival in France, long Customs lines made us nervous, and we were thankful for our premium access, which had a much shorter line. However, a CDG employee alerted us the fastest line for us would actually be the one for U.S. passengers — only four people stood in line before us.
  • With free in-flight messaging available, my husband was able to get text message updates about an Eagles football game from his cousin during our return flight. He was a happy traveler when he discovered this service!

AIR FRANCE
airfrance.us

Introducing

FX Excursions

FX Excursions offers the chance for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in destinations around the world.

Explore Excursions

#globility

Insta Feed

Global City Guidebook: Cappadocia

With a history stretching back millennia, Cappadocia encompasses a region of Anatolia in central Türkiye known for its magical landscapes, lovely valleys and underground cities. This region attracts tourists from around the world but is also known for its viticulture and history. Major cities Nevşehir and Kayseri (Caesarea) offer access to towns such as Göreme, Ürgüp, Uçhisar and Derinkuyu.

Reconnecting the World: GBTA Convention 2023 Spotlights the Vital Role of Business Travel and In-Person Connection

In an increasingly digital and interconnected world, the Global Business Travel Association (GBTA) Convention remains an indispensable platform for business travel industry professionals seeking to make the most of the power of face-to-face connections. Taking place August 13–15 in Dallas, the 2023 GBTA Convention provides the unique opportunity for professionals and companies to join visionaries, thought leaders and industry experts for meaningful networking, cutting-edge insights and inspiring innovation.

Global City Guidebook: Savannah

Savannah, Georgia, is known for its stunning parks, antebellum architecture, cobblestone squares, historic landmarks, spooky buildings and coastal location. Travelers from all over flock to the destination for beauty and fun.

Daily
Jul 19, 2024

Hotel Heron Joins Lodging Options in Old Town Alexandria, Virginia

Perfectly positioned in the historic center of Old Town Alexandria, the newly opened Hotel Heron is ready to welcome guests in search of boutique luxury and eclectic fine dining. The hotel is housed in a space once occupied by George Mason Hotel, opened in 1926.

Paradisus by Meliá Redefines the All-Inclusive Experience

Paradisus by Meliá, a leading luxury all-inclusive resort brand, is taking the hospitality world by storm with its latest developments. With a slew of exciting developments, including a fresh property in Punta Cana, an adults-only resort in Los Cabos, an enticing chef partnership, revamped suites and much more, the brand is setting new standards for all-inclusive excellence. Each property maintains the essence of all-inclusive luxury while immersing guests in the rich tapestry of its destination, offering bespoke experiences that celebrate local culture and heritage. Paradisus is on a mission to redefine the all-inclusive paradigm, moving beyond conventional expectations to deliver personalized, lavish experiences tailored to every guest.

Global City Guidebook: Cairo

Take a step back in time in Cairo, Egypt’s capital and largest city. Home to the Nile River, museums boasting antiquities and the nearby Pyramids of Giza, there is no shortage of wonders to behold in Cairo.

Daily
Jul 17, 2024

History and Refinement Combine at Oslo’s The Continental Hotel

Traveling to Norway’s capital city? For an ideal setting, The Continental Hotel’s address on Stortingsgata in central Oslo is just the ticket. Ideally situated close to public transportation, the ferry harbor, and a wide array of world-class museums and dining options, this elegant 5-star, family-owned hotel is a member of Leading Hotels of the World, offering a luxe guest experience that presents the best in Nordic design and ambience.

Welcome to Wyndham Monterrey Ambassador Centro

Wyndham Monterrey Ambassador Centro, operated by Aimbridge LATAM, opened its doors, welcoming guests to one of the most iconic and traditional properties in Monterrey, Nuevo León. Boasting 229 rooms and suites, the hotel, part of Wyndham Hotels & Resorts, is ready for discerning travelers. Wyndham Hotels & Resorts is the largest hotel franchise company in the world with approximately 9,100 hotels in more than 95 countries.

Global City Guidebook: Cairns, Australia

Located on the northeastern coast of Far North Queensland, Australia, Cairns is a seaside city drawing visitors both by land and sea. The city, founded in the late 19th century, features two UNESCO World Heritage sites, a rain forest comprising part of the Wet Tropics of Queensland and the Great Barrier Reef. Cairns blends urban sprawl with Australia’s natural landscape, from beaches to rivers to valleys. With just 153,000 people calling the city home, Cairns invites visitors to explore its many sites and experiences.