Air France has rolled out a new cabin for its Boeing 777 leisure fleet. However, whilst the premium cabin has seen fantastic improvements, the densification of the economy cabin might make some question their future travel onboard the carrier.
What are the details?
Air France‘s cabin upgrade has been a long time coming. With international competitors like American Airlines, United and British Airways rolling out new cabins to attract lucrative business passengers, for a moment it looked as if Air France would be left behind.
That would not be the case, with Air France making plans to roll out the new cabin to their whole long-haul fleet.
According to One Mile At A Time, so far Air France has so far rolled out the new cabins to:
- Airbus A350 – The new aircraft have new cabins upon delivery. Business-class onboard is in a slightly different configuration of 1-2-1
- Boeing 787-9 – Same as the A350, with the new cabin being included in the delivery but with their business cabin in a 1-2-1 configuration.
- Airbus A330-200 – This fleet is being upgraded to the same cabins as the Airbus A350 with a 2-2-2 configuration in business.
- Boeing 777 – Progressively updated with the new cabins, with the entire revamp still ongoing at this time.
- Airbus A380 – With Air France’s plans to retire the type, it is unlikely that this aircraft will have any updates at all. The aircraft is due to be completely phased out by 2022.
It is the Boeing 777s that will be the feature of this story. Whilst some Boeing 777s have been rolled out with the new concept, only recently has Air France revealed the ultra-dense Boeing 777-300ER with the new economy cabin.
What is the new cabin-like onboard the Boeing 777?
We should clarify that Air France actually has two different Boeing 777 configurations.
- The first is for their long-haul business routes. These aircraft fly from France to destinations such as America’s, Asia and the Middle East. They include a first-class cabin and have 322 seats.
- The second is for long-haul leisure destinations such as the Carribean and African island destinations (like the French island of Reunion). It seats 472 seats.
Air France created the latter configuration as a way to combat the rise of French low-cost-carriers.
It looks something like this:
- 14 business-class seats
- 28 premium economy-seats
- 430 economy seats.
Business-class has passengers in a 1-2-1 slightly overlapping format.
“Completely redesigned, the seat converts into a lie-flat bed that is 2m long and 57.1 cm wide for jet lag-free flying across time zones. Whether traveling alone or with a companion, the new seat adapts to every need. Customers can choose to enjoy greater proximity when they’re traveling with someone or total privacy thanks to a sliding panel separating the seats.”
Following these seats is a new premium economy cabin in a 2-4-2 configuration. This is fantastic for coupes (as they can sit together near the fuselage) and families (who can sit together in the middle of the aircraft).
The newly designed seats have 130 degrees of recline (in a fixed shell) and an extending footstool. There is 102 cm of seat pitch, 40 inches for our North American readers. And a bigger in-seat TV screen (13 inches). The cabin is also separated from economy.
Speaking of which.
The new economy cabin does leave a little to be desired. The seats are in a 3-4-3 configuration, with only 31 inches of pitch. This will be very tight and is designed to get as many price-conscious passengers on their way to their holiday as possible. The previous cabin design had 32 inches of pitch. The screens are bigger than normal, at 11 inches, which is nice.
What do you think of the denser cabins? Let us know in the comments.