Booking the Trip: Skyteam-ing it to Europe and Back
Review: Turkish Airlines Lounge Washington Dulles
Review: Etihad Airways First and Business Class Lounge Washington Dulles
Review: Air France 777-300ER Business Class Washington DC to Paris CDG
Review: Air France Business Class Lounge Terminal 2F Gate F30 (Schengen)
Review: Air France Business Class Lounge Terminal 2F Gate F50 (Schengen)
Review: Air France JOON A320-200 Business Class Paris CDG to Rome
Review: EasyJet A321Neo Economy Class Rome to London Gatwick
Trip Photos: A Brief Re-visit to Italy & London with a bit of Oxford
Review: Premier Inn London Heathrow Terminal 4
Review: SkyTeam Lounge London Heathrow
Review: KLM 737-800 Europe Business Class London Heathrow to Amsterdam
Review: KLM 747-400 World Business Class Amsterdam to Toronto
Review: United Airlines 737-800 Business Class Toronto to Chicago
Review: United Airlines 737-800 First Class Chicago to Santa Ana
YOUTUBE: Air France: Washington DC to Paris CDG
YOUTUBE: Air France JOON: Paris CDG to Rome
YOUTUBE: EasyJet: Rome to London Gatwick
YOUTUBE: KLM: London Heathrow to Amsterdam
YOUTUBE: KLM: Amsterdam to Toronto
YOUTUBE: United Airlines: Toronto to Chicago
YOUTUBE: United Airlines: Chicago to Santa Ana
After boarding the aircraft directly from the Etihad Lounge, the crew welcomed me at the boarding door and directed me across the galley and to the right where my seat was at 11L.
Air France has 2 business class cabins on their 777-300ERs. There’s a mini cabin right behind the first class cabin which consists of 4 rows, and then there’s the much larger cabin right behind the second door.
Air France uses Zodiac cirrus reverse herringbone business class seats for their planes. 3 years ago, it was probably the best seat in business class, however in the last few years with the evolution of the Apex suites, Qatar’s Qsuites, and Delta’s A350 seats, these have fallen back a bit. That being said, they are still a perfectly comfortable way to cross the Atlantic and have good privacy.
Let’s talk about the seat itself. The seat cushion was pretty comfortable and the back cushion was quite plush which was nice. The headrest was good for sitting, however not for sleeping. Thankfully a pillow was provided for sleeping which was good enough. I was not especially impressed with the quality of the pillow but it will suffice for a transatlantic flight.
At each seat, you have a pillow, a soft blanket, and a hangar provided. I put my jacket on the hangar provided and I was about to hang it on the mound by the TV, but within second of me hanging my jacket, a crew member came and asked to take my jacket to keep in a coat locker and I thought that was nice.
Shortly after that, the crew came around with amenity kits. I’m not sure that there was a difference in the contents, but there were three different colors to choose from and I chose the blue one.
The contents were nice for a 7 hour flight across the Atlantic ocean. The toothpaste/toothbrush was all I needed as I was too lazy to take out my own from my bag. Though there was also some cremes and moisturizers that I definitely think others could find useful.
To the right of the seat, a storage compartment opens and in there was plenty of space to store things. In there was Air France’s noise canceling headphones which weren’t that great, so I didn’t bother with them.
Right above the area where your right ear is, there would be a reading light.
Simply push the circular button and the light turns on.
The way the zodiac reverse herringbone seat differs from other reverse herringbone seats is that the TV is folded and can come out. It isn’t fixed in place. To release the TV, simply push the silver button to the bottom left of the TV, and the TV comes out.
By your ankle area, there is a magazine rack and in that you have slippers. This is a nice addition to the amenity kit, especially for a shorter 7 hour flight.
The kit came with slippers, socks, and headphone covers for the headphones provided.
Now it wasn’t until after we pushed back that the crew came around with pre-departure drinks. They came around with a choice between water and orange juice. I went with orange juice.
Soon enough we taxiied to our departure runway and had a fairly long roll.
10 minutes after takeoff, the crew came around with menus on the left aisle of the cabin. It took another 10 minutes after that for the crew working the right aisle to distribute menus. Here’s a look at the menu for this flight.
After distributing menus, the crew came around with glasses of champagne for everyone in the cabin. Air France serves Cuvee in business class.
The cabin crew then began the meal service. They began service with those who wanted the express service first.
After that, the rest of us were served. I wasn’t too happy that there was only one choice of appetizer but it is what it is. Everyone was served the same salad, quinoa, and foie gras starter. When they initially set the tray on your table, each individual plate has a plastic cover from probably when the dishes were put together and they remove the plastic covers in front of you. While that’s not a big deal, it’s probably something that should be done in the galley.
With that, the crew also asked what drink we wanted to go with our appetizer and I went with sparkling water.
The salad was good for what you’d expect out of a salad. It also came with olive oil and balsamic vinegar dressing. The olive oil was good and so did the balsamic vinegar, but it had this weird musty taste that I’d never had from balsamic vinegar.
The quinoa was chilled and tasted decent with a light taste from the vegetables around it. I’m not a big fan of foie gras and only had a bite and left it at that. It’s definitely an acquired taste and one that I don’t have for that.
After finishing the appetizers, the crew came and collected our plates. At the same time, they served the main course that we had ordered. They also refilled my sparkling water which was good. There were three choices between a braised beef in thyme sauce, chicken in wine sauce, and mushroom risotto with chestnut creme.
The dish looked sloppy, but it was better than it looked. The chicken was nice and moist but bland by itself. The wine sauce, in addition, made it tastier and I enjoyed it. The artichoke puree also looked sloppy but it was delicious. The same goes for the caramelized apples. Overall, the main course was good.
Once I finished my main course, the crew cleared my tray and offered to refill my sparkling water at which I declined and just asked for hot water. They just left the dessert and cheese.
The dessert was a caramel cake and it was easily the highlight of my meal. It was absolutely delicious and I wish there was more of it.
The cheeses were also tasty and a good ending to the meal.
Overall, the meal was mostly good except for maybe the appetizer. I especially liked the portions as I felt full at the end of the meal, not stuffed. Other airlines go overkill on the portions in business or first class and not only does the passenger not finish, but it’s also a waste of money by the airline for producing so much more food and having it wasted. One thing that took away from the whole experience was the fact that all of the services was being done from a cart that was brought through the aisles. I think that’s just going through the motions, doesn’t really differentiate the experience much, and takes away from the personal aspect of the experience.
After our tray tables were cleared, I headed to the lavatories to check them out.
There was really nothing too special about them that made it different from economy class besides the clarins perfumes.
When I came back, waiting at my seat were 2 chocolates with a Christmas decor. It was the holiday season after all, so why not?
It was just smooth cruising at this point.
I made my bed with the pillow and blanket and got into bed. The blanket was soft and quite comfortable. You would be sleeping directly on the seat with no duvet but that’s perfectly fine as the seat was mostly plush.
I got 3.5 hours of sleep which is all that I can ask for on a 6.5-hour transatlantic hop. I woke up just as we were passing south of Ireland.
Shortly after waking up, breakfast service began. There was nothing too much about this either, it was the same thing for everyone. Even though I was unhappy with the lack of choice, I was happy with the choice they made of what they gave us.
The fruits were nice and refreshing. They consisted of watermelon, cantaloupe, and mango. All tasted fresh and nice.
The breads were ok. They barely lukewarm but they were soft which I was happy to see.
They also gave butter & jam for the breads and then there was plain yogurt which I downed in no time.
I was happy with the breakfast overall. Fruits, bread, and plain yogurt. You can’t get much healthier and the portion was just right. The crew also offered drinks at this time for which I chose hot water.
We were also given hot scented towels after breakfast.
Shortly after, we began our descent. The captain gave the pre-arrival updates including an early arrival and the temperature being sub 32 Fahrenheit/0 celsius. I immediately changed from my flip flops to socks/shoes when I heard that.
On our descent, we got great views of Paris given that CDG is just northeast of the city so we descended north of Paris and got those views.
We touched down about 25 minutes early at 7:20 AM. Given that we were further up in the northern hemisphere in the winter, we wouldn’t see any sunlight at least for a couple more hours.
Unfortunately, we arrived at a bus gate which I was not looking forward to given the sub-freezing weather.
The bus was just a short walk away from the plane and it was FREEZING on the tarmac. I was already wearing a jacket and long pants with shoes and socks and the cold got through within a minute.
Overall, this was a mostly pleasant way to fly across the Atlantic ocean. The seats were great, the crew was great, the food was mostly good, and the amenities were plenty sufficient for a 7 hour overnight flight. I wish Air France personalized the service with the removal of the carts as a part of their service. I will say that the only parts where I thought they could improve were the little things that didn’t matter so much like the removing of plastic covers from the food, the old balsamic vinegar, etc. They definitely did all the main things right. Would I fly Air France’s business again? Yes!