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I recently had the chance to fly Air France business class from Los Angeles to Tahiti.
If you’re considering flying Air France and are wondering whether it’s worth booking a business class seat — or if you’re already planning on booking business class and are trying to decide what airline to fly — keep reading for details of my experience, including the Air France business class cabin, food and service.
An overview of Air France
Air France is a member of the SkyTeam alliance, with flights to 209 destinations in 92 countries. Because Air France is part of this alliance, you can credit your Air France business class flight to earn SkyMiles with Delta Air Lines or, if award space is available, redeem Delta SkyMiles for the flight.
Flying Air France business class between Los Angeles and Tahiti can be pricey, with round-trip airfare costing $3,000 or more. My one-way flight, which also included premium economy on Air Tahiti from Tahiti to Bora Bora, cost $3,073.
While this was an expensive flight, I credited the flight to my Delta SkyMiles account and earned 8,190 Delta SkyMiles — worth approximately $123 based on NerdWallet’s most recent valuation of the SkyMiles program.
» Learn more: The best airline credit cards right now
Air France business class airport experience
My pre-departure experience with Air France business class was smooth. Check-in was a breeze, and although the flight was full, there was no line for business class passengers. I was immediately able to see an agent and check in.
At check-in, the Air France agent told me that I would have access to the Oneworld lounge. This was interesting considering Air France isn't part of the Oneworld Alliance and there was a Korean Air lounge just a few hundred feet away (Korean Air, like Air France, is part of the SkyTeam alliance).
My experience in the Oneworld lounge was enjoyable — although the lounge was initially very busy, it emptied out eventually. The salad bar was delicious, although the warm food options were lacking (the main dishes were cheesy noodles, curried red beans and potato and leek soup). There was a complimentary bar and self-serve soft drinks and coffee.
The boarding time for my flight was 11:05 p.m. with a scheduled take-off at 11:50 p.m. I was pleased that boarding actually started a few minutes early (at 11 p.m. sharp) and we backed out of the gate almost exactly on time.
» Learn more: A points collector’s guide to Air France-KLM
Air France business class cabin
I had a great first impression when I walked in the Air France business class cabin — not only did the seat appear spacious, I was glad to see that already waiting for me was:
An amenity kit.
Sanitary kit (including wipes).
A bottle of water.
Lately, it feels more common that airlines wait until after departure to provide business class passengers with water and headphones — and airlines often won't provide any type of sanitary kit. I was very pleased with these gestures.
Air France operates a Boeing 777 between Los Angeles and Tahiti, and the business class seat cabin is set up in a 1-2-1 configuration with seven rows, for a total of 28 seats.
Usually, when I fly business class, I try to be in the bulkhead (front) row because those seats will often have more legroom than other seats. When I booked this flight, the bulkhead row was already taken and I ended up in seat 2A — but I was pleasantly surprised that my seat had just as much leg room as the bulkhead seat right in front of me.
There was a pillow and blanket provided, which was important for an overnight flight, and although they were a bit worn, they felt soft and comfortable. Overall, I was happy with the cabin and seat.
» Learn more: Air France business class overview
Food and drinks
Before takeoff, I was given a menu that included dinner and breakfast options, along with a lengthy list of both alcoholic and nonalcoholic drinks. I was also offered Champagne, orange juice or water as a welcome drink.
Because the flight took off at 11:50 p.m. and was scheduled for less than 9 hours, I wanted to sleep as much as I could and decided not to order dinner. If I had, the menu for that night’s flight included a crab salad starter and a main dish selection of:
A rack of lamb.
Poultry parcel stuffed with foie gras.
Pan-fried hake with a fava bean and truffle cream.
Mushroom ravioli and dessert.
I was definitely tempted to stay up for it!
The drink menu included a wide selection of:
Wines (including Pommery Brut Royal Champagne).
Although I didn’t get to enjoy dinner or the extensive drink menu, I did have breakfast served about an hour before landing. The meal included:
A basque omelet with potato croquettes.
A fresh fruit salad.
Overall, I found the breakfast to be delicious and filling.
Service and entertainment
If there was any room for improvement on this flight, it was the entertainment options. The movie selection was a bit sparse, although there were a few newer movies available — notably “Top Gun: Maverick” and “Elvis.” There was also no Wi-Fi offered on the flight, which is common on this route since it’s entirely over the Pacific Ocean.
That said, I was impressed with the quality of service from the flight attendants — they were friendly and attentive, and also quick to provide meals and drinks when asked.
Since this was a red-eye flight, the lack of entertainment options didn’t bother me, but if I were to fly Air France business class again during the daytime, I would bring a tablet with downloaded movies and TV shows just to be safe.
» Learn more: The complete guide to Delta partner airlines
If you’re looking to fly Air France business class
My experience flying Air France business class was enjoyable from start to finish, with a quick check-in, enjoyable lounge experience, on-time departure, comfortable seat, delicious food and friendly service onboard.
Although the entertainment selection on the flight left a bit to be desired, overall I was very happy with my flight and hope I have the chance to fly Air France business class again soon.
Featured image courtesy of Air France.
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