Airline Review: Air France A330-200 Business Class
As of now, there are two versions of the Air France A330-200 Business Class. The more modern lie-flat product in a 1-2-1 configuration and the old angle-lie-flat product in a 2-2-2 configuration. This review of the Air France long haul Business features the old product, which I flew with in an Airbus A330-200. While I was expecting the worst of this old configuration, I was actually positively surprised.
When it comes to old Business Class products there are two major problems.
- Airplane: Airbus A330-200
- Cabin Class: Business Class
- Daytime: Evening till Morning
- Food: Dinner and Breakfast
- Seat Pitch: 61 Inch (155 Centimeter)
- Seat Width: 21.5 Inch (55 Centimeter)
First, the seats happen to be not fully flat quite often. Second, not every seat has direct aisle access. Both problems also exist in the old Air France long haul Business Class. Anyway, the product itself looks rather fresh as the design is quite nice.
For the relatively short long haul flight from Mumbai to Paris I made myself comfortable in the first Business Class compartment and was surprisingly surprised about the comfort of the product while in an upright position.
Seating in the Air France A330-200 Business Class
The seating definitely is the biggest negative issue in the Air France long haul Business Class. Nevertheless, the seats are not as bad as I expected.
While being rather old, the seats were comfortable in an upright position and were also totally fine for lounging. When it comes to sleeping, things got a little difficult as the seat really feels everything but fully flat.
Even though I dozed off for a fair four or five hours, I’m quite sure I wouldn’t have if I wouldn’t have been so tired. The length of the seat in the Air France A330-200 Business Class is actually okay for sleeping, while the width is a little small, but still okay. The real issue definitely is the fact that the seat is not fully flat.
Besides that, I liked the design and also found the storage room to be very practical. Features to be found besides the seat control are a reading lamp and a coat hanger. However, you may not need the latter in the Air France long haul Business Class as the crew is taking care of your jacket or coat.
Catering in the Air France long haul Business
While I expected the hard product in the old Air France long haul Business Class to be quite weak, I had high hopes for the food.
Air France offers a dinner and a breakfast service on the route from Mumbai to Paris, but offers passengers the option to skip either one or even both meals for a more comfortable stay.
For the sake of the airline review I decided to have both meals anyway. The dinner consisted of marinated salmon as an appetizer (very tasty), cottage cheese dumplings as a main (very good; two other options were available as well) and apple strudel for dessert (okay).
What I really enjoyed was the fact that the dinner was served on one tray, making it easy to finish your meal just one hour after departure.
Breakfast in the Air France Business Class also came on a single tray with a selection of fresh fruits, a yoghurt and a hot option of your choice.
While I found the fruits to be average, the pancakes were a real highlight (and this comes from someone who is everything but a breakfast person!). Additionally, I was offered several options from the bread basket and opted for a very tasty hot pastry.
I was asked for drinks several times during the flights and couldn’t have been happier about the served champagne and the decent orange juice in the morning.
Entertainment in the Air France A330-200 Business Class
When it comes to quantity, the entertainment options in the Air France long haul Business Class were plentiful. Upon departure, guests in Business Class are offered newspapers in several languages.
You may also opt for a magazine. Besides that, there’s also a board magazine, which I found to be quite nice.
Moreover, you may make use of the IFE system. However, it’s worth noting that the system is very old and the screen in the Air France A330-200 Business Class is fairly small. Also, the selection is very limited.
The selection of movies is okay and the quantity of series available is fine, too. However, there is just one random episode of every series, which I found quite annoying. I also found the flight show as well the other entertainment options to be not very interesting.
It’s also worth noting that there is no Wi-Fi in the old Air France long haul Business Class.
Amenities in the Air France long haul Business
Flying the Air France long haul Business Class, you are offered noise-cancelling headphones to use during the flight.
These were absolutely decent, yet not quite as good as the Bose Quiet Comfort ones. Moreover, passengers in the Air France long haul Business Class are offered an amenity kit including, which not only looks rather small, but is also a little weirdly equipped.
While there are is typical toothbrush, toothpaste, eyeshades, earplugs and lip balm, there are also a large portion of mouth wash, a Schuhlöffel and cream. The latter is provided by Clarins and is among the better ones available in Business Class.
Yet, I was not really impressed by the amenity kit offered in the Air France Business Class.
Bottom line Air France long haul Business
Going into a long haul flight with low expectations is always a good idea. With this mindset, I was rather positively surprised by the Air France Business Class.
While the product on the Airbus A330-200 definitely needs to be refreshed, the soft product offered by Air France is very good. The food is tasty and served in a very efficient way. The crew is extremely friendly and helpful and makes you feel at home in the airplane.
The toilets are rather basic, but equipped with some Clarins amenities. There’s nothing really bad about the old Air France Business Class, but I wouldn’t hesitate flying the Air France Business Class again on a daytime flight!
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