FLIGHT AF 023
CLASS OF SERVICE Economy
SEAT NUMBER 28H
AIRCRAFT Boeing 777-200
TAKEOFF 14-03-09 5:25 p.m.
VIEWS 6800
LANDING AT 5:30 a.m.
Esteban
The 16th March 2014

Photo review of Air France flight from New York to Paris in Economy

  • MLH CDG E190 : FOLLOW ME HERE
  • CDG JFK A380 : JUST A CLICK AWAY
  • JFK CDG B772 : the most horrible seat in the aviation industry!!
  • CDG MLH E190 : won't be published as it is a copy paste of the inbound report ;)

So, here I am for the return part of the Flight Report meeting in NYC. Unfortunately, as the picture may suggest, I haven't flown on Concorde on a mystery trip back in time… More explanation after my AF 023 trip report.

The ride from Brooklyn to JFK by Subway A and AirTrain takes approx. 45 minutes for USD 7.50.- which is a very good deal. I was surprised to see that AF flights are leaving from T1 whereas KL and DL fly from T4. Non sense, but anyway.

No one of the self check in kiosks wants to accept my passport, seems having a double name on it does not match very well with automated procedures.

I proceed to a Sky Priority desk and within a few seconds my boarding pass is issued by a very friendly agent. TSA, thanks to the prio access, will be expedited in 10 minutes, whereas the regular queue quite long is.

I'll arrive with two hours to kill at the Air France lounge.

It has two levels, the upper one is strictly reserved for AF guests, the lower is shared with SU, JL and KE. AF guests are also welcome to use it. I head for the 2nd floor and I am alone, nobody else for the time being. I take this opportunity to take a maximum of pictures of the lounge:

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There are even two boardrooms available for bookings, but they are free right now::

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Very clean toilets:

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Beverage buffet:

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And food:

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I tried a bit of everything, and have to say that both sandwiches were delicious. The vegetarian with vegetables and cheese was top, and the other one with beef and provolone divine. I will help my self more than once :)
The dips were fresh and tasty, I tried the guacamole and the tapenade one.

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Then I will play my little curious, and want to know what the differences are between both levels:

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Set up, drinks and newspapers are the same. But no sandwiches nor veggies. Only some instant noodles and snacks.

I head back upstairs via the escalator:

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A bit of spotting, just to say I did it:

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That's where I am:

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With a good zoom, it is even possible to take nice shoots of Manhattan:

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A few minutes before scheduled boarding time, I head to my gate, this to be sure to find space in the overhead lockers. And to be able to show you the jump seat I will have for my return. I use the word jump seat in purpose, because this thing is so narrow and uncomfortable that you can't call it a seat. To cut it short, when seated, my right elbow will be over the aisle. If you compare my seat pictures from the previous report, you'll see that space between seats is cut by two. The armest is so small that is can barely fit 10% of an arm!!

Being seated at the aisle, during boarding, I'll be either slapped by an arm, a bag, an elbow, or all three together depending on the heigth of the person :)

There was a guy seated a row behind, on the opposite aisle seat. This guy spread his legs over the aisle during the first hour of the flight. Everyone, in order to avoid them, always hit my shoulder. Soon enough, I was fed up of it, I stood up and walked on his feet. That worked pretty well as I have not seen his legs elsewhere than under the seat in front of him. But I will have another problem soon, I'll come back to it later.

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Pitch was ok, however:

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Old school IFE:

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PSU:

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Menu:

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There is no separate aperitive service on that flight, all drinks come with the meal, all in ;) I'll choose the chicken:

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I must say, it was very good. Enough food and good quality. After the meal, as I know I won't sleep, I watched Ender's game (a very good film, I loved it). The only problem was my left handside neighbour, I'll call her sleepy-granny. A charming old lady, very well behavied, but who decided she will sleep on my left shoulder.

If you remember well, my right shoulder is the place to hit for people walking up and down the aisle. The left one is now a pillow for sleepy-granny. After my fight with my aisle neighbour's feet, I was not in the mood to shoot in sleepy-granny's head. So I try to slowly raise up and down my shoulder for her to notice that this is a no heads land. I'll be fed up by that game mid of my second movie that I will end to watch half way bent down. The comfort rating of that trip report will be very very low …

Shortly before landing, one hour or so, this thing is being served. You can't call this a breakfast. The muffin was stale, the creamy thing was bland and tasteless and they didn't even serve chocolate. WTF??

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We will land on time at CDG, I'll transfer to the crapy 2G with the most fameous AF cupboard, I mean, lounge of the world. A tinny, crowded, overheated room that they call 'lounge'. But I'll be there 1 minute before they open (06:00am) and I'll rush to secure a seat at the very back of the room, next to a plug and most important, just below the WIFI router.

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Let's now go to the cover picture of this report, CONCORDE.

While we all met in New York, the FR team organised a visit of the Intrepid, where the space shuttle Enterprise and Concorde are on display. As we already knew that it is not possible to visit Enterprise, three of us decided to do the 'Concorde Experience', a one hour guided tour with both outside and inside visit. This visit is sold at USD 20.- not very cheap, specially that this come on top of the regular admission fee. But I can tell you, it is worth every single penny. Go for it!

This pass made some of our friends quiet jaleous that day (Don't you, JulienIP ?)

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The beautiful bird:

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Our guide will give us lots of details and funny things about her. We listened to everything like children as it was so interesting.

The must of the visit is going inside Concorde. We spent approx 40 minutes inside. The first part of the tour was the front of the plane, before the red rope, where everything is plastic covered:

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That's a sample menu of what was served aboard BA's supersonic jet:

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Very tinny windows and the PSU:

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As the whole group was very dynamic and had lots of questions about the plane, the guide allowed us to go behind the red rope and visit the second part of the plane. That was really an exception, as it is not done usually. Unfortunately, after the galley, there is a plexiglas wall and you can't go further. Without it, no need to mention that we would have gone ;)

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The recline of the seats is quite particular. It reclines like a rocking chair. The seat back reclines, and the seat itselves goes up and reclines. It does not look as a big recline, but it is indeed very comfortable.

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The tray table:

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Doors 2L and 2R, unfortunately not in a very good shape, the slide compartement and the uper part are missing.

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Mid-plane jump seat:

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And then, the final highlight of the visit, the cockpit tour. Everyone of us wants to look at something in particular, the matchmeter, the flight controls, the trust controls or the lever to put the noise up or down. Here are all those things, like jewellery for us:

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Verdict

Air France 

Cabin 0.5
Cabin crew 7.0
Entertainment 6.5
meal/catering 8.0
TOTAL 5.5/10

Air France Lounge 

Comfort 8.5
meal/catering 8.5
Services 8.5
Entertainment 10.0
TOTAL 8.9/10

New York - JFK 

Efficiency 10.0
Access 10.0
Services 9.0
Cleanliness 9.0
TOTAL 9.5/10

Paris - CDG 

Efficiency 10.0
Access 3.0
Services 3.0
Cleanliness 3.0
TOTAL 4.8/10

Conclusion

After that flight, I swear, I will never again fly on an AF 777 in coach. It is awful in every aspect. Never again.

Positive, however, was the food, and to be fully honest, the aim of this report was not to publish the AF 772 experience, but the Concorde visit which deserves A+++!

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