The first aircraft kitted out with Air France’s new look cabins has entered service. The French flag carrier is rolling out the update to its Airbus A330 fleet, with its business, premium economy and economy products all receiving the bright refresh.
Passengers onboard the company’s Paris/Charles de Gaulle to Accra service on February 3 were the first to enjoy the enhancements, with the airline planning to overhaul all 15 of its A330 widebodies by 2020, representing an €140m (£123m) investment. The company’s other long-haul aircraft, including the 777 and 787 are unaffected by the change.
Highlights within the business class cabin include a redesigned Equinox 2D seat which converts into a 78.7in x 22.5in (2m x 57.1cm) lie-flat bed, alongside new HD touch screen IFE, measuring over 18.5in (47cm). The overall configuration however, will remain in its current 2-2-2 setup.
Further back, the upgraded premium economy offering now includes a 130° seat recline in a fixed shell, a 40.1in (102cm) seat pitch, additional storage space and a 13.3in (33.9cm) HD screen. Economy passengers meanwhile can look forward to more space between the armrests, a larger tray table, a wider HD screen and a reinforced ergonomic foam seat with 118° recline.
All seats are equipped a personal power outlet and USB plug, allowing travellers to use electronic devices throughout the flight.
In addition to the Ghana route, the new cabins will be available on flights to Houston and the Burkina Faso capital, Ouagadougou until the end of the airline’s winter season on March 30. For summer 2019 (March 31 through to October 26) destinations including Cadjehoun/Cotonou in Benin, Lagos/Murtala Muhammed, Niamey/Diori Hamani in Niger and Bengaluru/Kempegowda and Delhi Indira Gandhi in India will be served by the upgraded A330s. Transatlantic passengers to Seattle, Dallas and Chicago in the United States also stand to benefit.
While it has been in development for some time, the upmarket redesign is likely to go down well with newly-appointed Air France-KLM CEO Ben Smith, who has been critical of the direction taken by his predecessors.