On the Ground: With virtually no wait in the designated check-in line for Premium Voyageur passengers, we were quickly assisted by pleasant and efficient agents. We happily checked our bags with their priority tags attached, passed quickly through the designated security line and made our way to L’Espace Lounge.
The small lounge offers separate zones (but not individual rooms) for dining, television watching or going online. Minimalist in design and slightly worn but clean, the room had large windows covered by opaque shades, which let in natural light and screened out the rooftop view of ducts and air-conditioning units. Leather club chairs with adjoining side tables and lamps and ample electrical outlets provided comfortable seating as I powered up my laptop to access the free WiFi. My husband checked out the three workstations and reported that one computer wasn’t functioning and the rest were frustratingly slow.
Although we arrived just before 1 p.m. and were hoping to find lunch items, food offerings were limited to prepackaged snacks and small rounds of cheese. A little later, a few small sandwiches were set out — and depleted before I got to them. A good selection of sodas, soft drinks and bottled water were augmented by a self-service station of wines, Champagne and liquors. The boarding announcement informed us of the time required to get to our gate — very helpful.
Pre-flight: We boarded through a separate entrance but still found ourselves seated aft of the economy-class doorway, delaying attendant service. Our seats were stocked with an amenity kit (ear plugs, eye shade, toothbrush, comb, shoe horn, moisturizer, headphone covers, socks and a shoe bag), blanket, pillow and bottled water. Each also featured a USB port and electrical outlet, reading lamp, headphones and spaces for stowing personal gear. Once boarding was completed, we were offered Champagne, juice and a selection of newspapers.
In-flight: Our dinner service — on white linen and china — began with an amuse-bouche of quail with chestnuts and cranberry preserves (and more Champagne) and proceeded to a delicious smoked duck and scallop flan appetizer and seasonal salad. The only disappointment here was the cold and rather dry rolls offered. Three entrées (including a vegetarian option) plus a special chicken dish were available; we both enjoyed the tournedos of beef in shallot sauce with two delicious red wine blends. A cheese plate (delectable brie and camembert at perfect room temperature) was followed by a trio of miniature desserts and a choice of coffee, tea or an assortment of after-dinner liqueurs.
Cabin lights dimmed, and after sampling the abundant entertainment on the AVOD system (movies, TV series, games, music), I reclined my seat into its self-contained shell and raised the footrest to achieve a not-flat-but-nevertheless-comfortable position for several hours of rest. I’ve found most cabins to be quite cool and prefer them so for sleeping, but on this flight I was actually too warm. Breakfast, served about 90 minutes before we reached Paris, began with fresh fruit (the sweetest, juiciest pineapple I’ve had in a long time), yogurt and pastries and concluded with a choice of omelet and hash browns, blueberry crêpes or a cold plate of preserved meats and cheeses. I enjoyed the crêpes while my husband, the last to be served, had to accept the cold plate (and the front of the plane was not full — disappointing). Not being coffee drinkers, we both found the hot chocolate — thick, creamy and rich — extremely satisfying.
The Experience: This was my first flight on Air France and one I would gladly repeat. The comfortable seat, fine service and delectable food and wine made the nearly 11-hour flight a pleasant one.
- Less than 10 minutes for check-in
- Friendly and helpful agents
- Priority tagged bags
- Airport lounge
- Complimentary in-lounge food and beverages
- Priority boarding
- Helpful and courteous in-flight staff
- Pre-flight beverage service
- Pre-flight newspapers and magazines
- Amenity kits
- Lie-flat seat/bed
- Mattress pad and comforter
- In-flight menu offering choice of three entrées
- Top-shelf wines and liquors
TAP Air Portugal is adding 15 new weekly flights from the United States and Canada by summer 2020, a new record for the carrier of 71 weekly flights between North America and Portugal.
WalletHub compared the 100 largest U.S. cities across 24 key metrics to determine the best destinations for an upcoming Oktoberfest celebration. The brand’s study found the estimated cost for an American to attend Oktoberfest in Munich, Germany, is $5,000. Munich boasts a $1.43 billion annual economic impact on Munich. During Oktoberfest, nearly 2 million gallons of beer are consumed and more than 510,000 whole roast chickens eaten.
Qantas will start using a Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner on its Sydney–Santiago route starting in late June 2020.
Welcome to Rhodes, a medieval treasure beautifully preserved throughout the centuries. Rhodes is the capital of the Dodecanese, an island ideal not only for those who want to relax, but also for those looking for an action-packed holiday! With its bright green hills, rich green valleys and uninterrupted line of golden beaches, Rhodes is truly a blessed place. “The sun island” has more sunshiny days and milder temperatures throughout the year than any other location in Greece. It is, after all, one of the country’s easternmost places and among the first to welcome summer on its impressive beaches. Add in the excellent facilities for tourism, the island’s special blend of cosmopolitan and traditional, and numerous cultural and archaeological sites, the most important being the Medieval (Old) Town, a UNESCO World Heritage site, and you’ve got the perfect holiday destination. While on Rhodes, don’t miss a daytrip to nearby Sými. An island of sponge divers and seamen, Sými used to have 30,000 inhabitants before the Second World War and was the richest island in the Dodecanese, despite its small size. Today, Sými attracts many visitors thanks to its beautifully preserved Neo-Classical buildings and the famous Archangel Michael monastery at Panormitis.
On Location Experiences makes it easy for travelers to head to London or Mexico City for upcoming NFL games. Tottenham Hotspur Stadium hosts the Chicago Bears and Oakland Raiders Oct. 6, and the Carolina Panthers and Tampa Bay Buccaneers Oct. 13; Wembley Stadium hosts the Cincinnati Bengals and Los Angeles Rams Oct. 27, and the Houston Texans and Jacksonville Jaguars Nov. 3; and Estadio Azteca hosts the Kansas City Chiefs and Los Angeles Chargers Nov. 18.
United Airlines announces a number of new routes.
Hotel brands all over the world have pushed for sustainability. For many, it began with reducing single-use plastics, like straws. InterContinental recently announced the end of in-room miniature toiletries.