Air France has today received its first A220-300 from Airbus, designed for its short- and medium-haul network.
This is the first of 60 A220-300s ordered in 2019 which will gradually replace the carrier’s A318s and A319s and several A320s. The company aims to integrate the new aircraft into its fleet by 2025.
The aircraft, named ‘Le Bourget’ after the town north of Paris which has ties to the aviation industry, will begin operations from October 31, flying from Paris-Charles de Gaulle to Berlin, Barcelona, Madrid, Milan-Linate and Venice.
This will be followed by flights to Bologna, Rome, Lisbon and Copenhagen for the 2021-2022 winter season.
The aircraft is configured with 148 seats in a 3-2 layout, offering 80 per cent of customers a window or aisle seat. It has two travel cabins (business and economy) and inflight wifi connectivity.
The seat is 48cm wide, reclines to 118 degrees and has an adjustable headrest, leather upholstery and an ergonomic seat cushion. Plus there’s a wide solid tray table, cup holder, a pouch for storing magazines and books, individual USB ports, and a tablet or smartphone holder integrated into the backrest.
The aircraft features the Air France livery and the company’s symbol of a winged seahorse on the front of its fuselage and on its wingtips. Meanwhile, the interiors are decorated in the carrier’s signature colours of blue, white and red, with a herringbone patterned carpet which nods to the “Haussman-inspired world of Parisian apartments”.
The aircraft has large windows, while specially-adapted cabin mood lighting settings aim to create “bright, dynamic lighting” during the welcome and disembarkation phases, and softer lighting during the flight.
On the sustainability front, the A220-300 provides a 20 per cent reduction in CO2 emissions, and a 34 per cent reduction in noise footprint compared to the A318 and A319 models. The new aircraft will also help the carrier reduce its environmental footprint and reach its aim by 2030 to reduce its overall CO2 emissions per passenger/km by 50 per cent compared to 2005.
Benjamin Smith, CEO of Air France-KLM, commented on the news:
“This new aircraft with an unparalleled energy performance represents a major asset for Air France. To date, fleet renewal is the main source of reducing CO2 emissions, and this is why we are continuing to invest in latest-generation aircraft. We are also activating all the levers at our disposal such as sustainable fuels or eco-piloting, as part of our contribution to promoting a carbon-neutral air transport industry and positioning ourselves as a leading player of a more sustainable aviation.”
Anne Rigail, CEO of Air France, added:
“The arrival of a new aircraft is always a special occasion for an airline. All the Air France teams have spent over two years preparing for this moment and we are excited to see our customers discover the optimal comfort offered by this aircraft. The cabin is more spacious, brighter, and offers full Wi-Fi-connectivity, further contributing to the upmarket positioning of our offer.”