Following President Donald Trump’s travel ban on non-Americans arriving in the United States from Europe, the all-business-class airline, La Compagnie has suspended operations. As of yesterday, 13th March, La Compagnie has reassessed its flight operations for the upcoming months. Due to American and French customers already having traveled, the boutique French airline says it will continue its Paris to New York flights until the 18th of March.
The airline was keen to point out that due to the travel ban, only American citizens, green card holders, and their families would be allowed to fly on the Paris-Orly to Newark route.
Coinciding with the 30-day travel ban
All flights between France and the United States will then be suspended until April 12th, which is when President Trump’s 30-day travel restriction is expected to end.
From April 13th, 2020 the all-business-class airline says that rather than operating two daily flights, it will only schedule one flight per day between the French capital and New York.
Along with this, the planned commencement of a seasonal Newark to Nice flight will be pushed back a month, from May 1st until June 1st.
La Compagnie to offer full refunds
In a statement to passengers, La Compagnie said that passengers with tickets for canceled flights will be able to change the dates at no charge or be offered a full refund of the ticketed fare. Other passengers on flights scheduled through May 1st, 2020 have the option of changing their travel dates or accepting a voucher. The voucher will be in the amount of the ticket price and will be good for travel anytime over the next 12 months.
After entering into a marketplace where other airlines have failed with an all-business-class model, La Compagnie seems to have got its business model right.
By focusing their attention solely on the Paris-Orly to Newark route and the seasonal service between the “Big Apple” and the French Riviera, the airline realized that expanding into other markets did not make financial sense.
On the new aircraft, La Compagnie offers 76 fully flat business class seats, seasonal French gastronomic menus, and complimentary access to high-speed Internet.
Pricewise they undercut the competitions business class offerings on the Paris to New York route and are second after Air France when it comes to revenue on the popular transatlantic flight.
La Compagnie in a strong financial position
La Compagnie says that they are in a strong financial situation to withstand the current coronavirus disruptions, but we cannot help wonder what would happen should the situation continue beyond the expected 30 days.
In some ways, small may be to their advantage as they do not have a huge amount of overhead costs or staff demands to contend with. This is in contrast to many of the other airlines affected by the current situation.
La Compagnie is definitely one airline we would like to see keep flying, so let’s hope all this is just a temporary setback and that normal service can be resumed as soon as possible.
If you have ever flown on La Compagnie’s new A321neos we would love to hear what you thought about the flight in the comments section.