new laws on passenger travel by the European Union, some already in place other to come from now to March 2013.
Air,boat,train, and bus
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For us, argentinian people, the most convenient airline to fly to Paris is Air France, of course, it is a direct flight from/to Buenos Aires-Paris, the ticket price is average among other lines depending on the season, but the main advantage is that you have not any stop, a fact that become important because the long last flight.
Air France is renowned by his on board service, and it is true, Boeing 777 comfortable seats and cabins, a good meals services and entertainments, a fact that one appreciate too much for a 12 hours flight, a bit tired, or worst, if you are flying in an uncomfy seat with a bad service.
So recommended for all those pals who are thinking to visit Argentina.
Air France was not the worst flight I have experienced but I didn't appreciate the 2 hour delay in take off with no explanation. Once we took off the flight was relatively smooth and the service was good. We arrivd in Paris a litle before 11am, tired but ready to go explore.
I had got a cheap deal to Paris from Marseille by Ryan Air. My both ways ticket (To Paris and back) cost me a total of Euros 17.99 including taxes. Shamefully cheap. Although I have taken many flights of Ryan Air before at very cheap prices, none were so cheap. The service was also good.
I truly enjoyed the friendliness and hospitality on board AF 031. after a delicious dinner, of course champers to begin, i was able to sleep all the way over the atlantic. The flight was notably less crowded last night, perhaps reflecting the economic crisis in America.
Continental Airlines has a summer seasonal flight from Cleveland to Paris. I was able to procure a business class seat on this at an extremely good price.
At a time when every one is complaining about the lack of service, I have to give high praises for the crew, clevelanda and newark based, who made the flight was just superb.
Very pleasant and extremely hospitable and here is the menu.
Charles Lafitte champagne
A demitasse of mroel mushroom soup accompanied by vegetable filled pastry and Thai peanut chicken kabob with coriander sauce
seared hablibut and grilled berbed shrimp with lobster sauce, white and wild rice and seasoned brocooli
vanilla icecream wtih choice of toppings( i chose chocolate and strawberrry)
and just before arrival:
sliced smoked salmon accented by dill mustard sauce/fresh fruit
pizza bread with roased chicken, red bell pepers, onions and emmental provolone cheeses
It took me less than five minutes to check in and the same amount through the immigration and customs.
The magic of travel is still there, you really have to look for it..
I had left Paris just one week ago, but wanted to get back here for personal reasons, and the even the economy air fares were astronomical. Called the Premium Desk at Continental and sure enough they were able to issue me a ticket from USA to Paris for one week, extremely reasonably
moreover, when i got on the plane, two seats next to me were vacant and i could stretch out well and have a good nights sleep before reaching Paris.
if you are flying a lot loyalty to one airline pays off.
Next year, Continental may leave the SkyTeam alliance which includes Air France so I may have to now cultivate flying Air France each time I go from paris to the American continent.. Air France you can get reasonable tickets only as long as you book well in advance, some thing a little difficult for me to do. Continental airlines will join Star Alliance, but it would sad for me that Air France will part company with Air France.
When flying on a plane for 6-8 hours, I wanted to make sure I was comfortable and happy. Air France ended up helping me accomplish those goals. There was about average leg space, but travelers are provided with a little kit containing a mask, headphones, etc. That made sleeping easier for me. Also, the food was good, for airline food. For me, food is the most important aspect of a long flight.
On the way back to America, each seat had a touch screen TV to control. I have never seen one of these before on a plane. It was amazing. It provided free movies, games, music, etc. I loved being able to control what movie I was watching. On the 8 hour flight back, I didn't sleep, yet was not bored at all.
Some things to consider on a long flight, take a sweater in case it gets cold and don't dress to warm in case it gets hot. I take my shoes off and put on booties (socks). Your feet will swell up. Periodic massaging of the feet might help keep the swelling down. Most planes provide a pillow and blanket. I would double up the blanket and use it for extra cushion on the seat. I always pack some extra snacks for the trip such as beef jerky, nuts and chocolate chip cookies in my carry on. Remember not to bring the open food packages back - especially the beef jerky. Customs has a real problem with that. Anyway, just some suggestions for the long flight.
There is a distinct disadvantage to flying Business Class on Air France. The food is good on the Miami to Paris portion that you tend to overeat.
soon as the plane takes off Champagne: Charles Heidsieck Brut Reserve is handed out. Other wines tasted on this trip: Cotes du Rhone Villages Vinsobres Les Cornuds 2005 Perrin et Fils
Bloc de Foie gras de canard, chutney aux fuits secs
poulet Braise a la provencale
la selection du maitre fromager
sorbet et petits fours secs
the breakfast was:
crepe aux oeufs brouilles au herbes, pomme paillasson et tomate cerise
A very pleasant meal, seat 1 D, no one sitting on the seat besides you, listening to the best collection of world music on AF and friendly and attentive service but not intrusive or servile.
It has taken me this long to think, let alone talk, about the trip "of a lifetime" to Paris in June-July 2005.
1) Having arranged our flight with Orbitz, including hotel reservations, we found - despite e-mail confirmation from Orbitz AND the hotel - that no such reservation existed.
2) The attempted return by Air France turned into a disaster when due to a missed rail connection from Hanover (fault of Deutsche Bahn leg), we missed our flight. We sat in one of the halls all night in hopes of getting on stand-by the next morning after being told by a sympathetic employee to check our luggage early. It was our 30th wedding anniversary that we had planned to spend with our family in Detroit
But we were refused boarding when another couple - without any luggage - was given preference.
Checking with the Customer Service desk, we were told that it was in their power to keep us on stand-by for the next ten days. If we wanted to return to the States before then we'd have to pay full fare again. This more than doubled the already paid fare but now we wished to leave this country at any cost - and paid another $ 1,100.00 under duress.
We spent the second night at a nearby hotel to take an early shuttle to our flight out. Before checking our bags a second time, I took care to remove the tags from the previous aborted stand-by flight as proof of having checked in legally with the approval of a now disavowed AirFrance employee.
To add insult to injury, the full fare coach seats assigned to us were directly behind the economy ones we had paid for in advance at half the cost of the original return tickets which had amounted to just under $ 1000.-.
Although the month-long trip through Europe had been one of joy, the troublesome exit from the continent has made us vow never to return. It was also the first one since I left Germany 58 years ago.
If you are a member of the Skyteam FF system, you may wish to fly Air France while flying out of Charles de Gaulle in Paris.
There are many AF agencies in town, the one I use is in the building at La Defense just close to FNAC.
Before lunch there are fewer people and you are well attended to and your questions are answered.
what are the advantages?
you can book and hold the reservation which you cant do on AF website. The prices are just about the same, eventhough the agency might charge you 30 euros service fee per ticket.
You are able to find out the price for complex itineraries which you can t do on AF website.
If you are flying CDG to MIA and then on to SFO and back to CDG, it is easier to talk to the agent, face to face.
I was able to snag a Business Class seat on the IAH to CDG flight. The food was good, eventhough I had been disappointed in the past. This year BOM to CDG flight also had some good food:
Tonights dinner included:
Hornard poche et mangue
Filet de cabillaud poele, saute d'artichauts au basilic et crocoli
biscuite breton vanille
Two glasses of champagne to begin with: Bollinger Special Cuvee and with dinner, Pessac-Leognan Chateau Coucheroy 2004 Lurton
10 mg Zolpidem after that and in no time, the plane landed at CDG. A quick 8 hr 40 minute flight
A dear friend of mine is headed to Paris today, for the first time in 45 years! She's flying on Air France, first time for her on that airline, and she's a bet trepidatious. Hearing her concerns made me think of my very first trip "across the pond".
There are two options for direct flights from San Francisco to Paris; United and Air France. I'm not sure why we booked Air France for our first trip. No doubt it was less expensive. At any rate, Janet and I were excited, fearful, happy, and a host of other emotions as we borded the flight.
Shortly after takeoff, the French flight attendant was making his first pass down the aisle with the drink cart. "Wuuud you care for zee drink?" he asked with his very French accent. Janet looked over the cart and said "Yes, please, champagne!" The flight attendant held the mini bottle of champagne for her to inspect, as if it were a very special and pricey bottle of Domaine Chandon; "CHAMPAGGNNNNEEEE", he proclaimed! Janet nodded and he unscrewed the top and poured it into her plastic up.
Aha, now we are living the high life!
Note: Since that first trip I have become a United frequent flyer and am dedicated to the acquisition of miles and the world of upgrades and benefits one enters as they work their way up the status levels. On one other occasion I had to fly Air France for some forgotten reason. I found the service grumpy and poor and the bathrooms terribly dirty a short way into the flight. Other than that, the seats in cattle class are all too small, too close together and they only get smaller and closer as the miles tick by.