Started in 2013 by an entrepreneur Frantz Yvelin, La Compagnie, which means “The Airline” in French, has a goal of providing business class trans-Atlantic fares for much cheaper than the legacy carriers.
“La Compagnie is reinventing the business-class experience, giving passengers uncompromised service quality and high-end perks”- Don Buchman, vice president and general manager, Commercial Aviation at Viasat.
They currently fly one route, Paris Orly to Newark, New York. They previously also flew to London, but cancelled the route due to concerns about Brexit.
They also have a fantastic deal of a ‘year pass’. For $40,000 USD, passengers can fly on its Newark to Paris route as many times as they like. Normal round trips can be had for as little as $1,500 USD.
They currently have two Boeing 757-200s (To be phased out by 2019) and have just revealed the first of two new A321neos.
The new La Compagnie A321neo
As they have decided to upgrade their current fleet of two jets to two A321neos, let’s discuss what new things they will have compared to the old fleet.
They will be able to hold 76 business class passengers (Compared to the Boeing 757 that only carried 74 passengers). As the plane is entirely in a business class configuration, we can expect it to be in a 2×2 configuration throughout like their previous jets.
In the 757’s they have no seatback entertainment but rely on giving out a tablet to each passenger after take-off. The new planes will fix this problem and have a new robust entertainment system installed (Specifically they will feature 15.7″ touchscreen monitors from Zodiac).
According to the press release, they will also be featuring WIFI on their planes throughout the flight.
“We are excited to offer unlimited high-speed Wi-Fi to all the passengers onboard our new aircraft, Viasat’s in-flight connectivity has unmatched speed, quality and affordability so everyone onboard can experience the internet just like they do in their home or office. Business-class democratization is in our DNA. This is a perfect match with Viasat’s solution: we will be offering this unlimited Wi-Fi access at a fraction of the cost of competitive solutions, following our low-fare approach. We are proud, as a small airline, to have the best in the market to offer to our passengers” – Jean Charles Périno, executive vice president of Sales and Marketing for La Compagnie.
And in the biggest upgrade announcement, they will have lie-flat business class seats. In their previous craft, they only had angled seats that had a pitch of 62”. The new seats will be the B/E Aerospace Diamond seats, that are angled and allow for a ‘lie-flat’ pitch of only 62”. They do this by expanding the footrest under the seat in front.
We look forward to seeing how this new experience fares in the cut-throat world of trans-Atlantic flying.