Air France has announced that they will start servicing Cairo from Paris’ Charles de Gaulle airport. The A350 will start serving the route as of December 23, 2019 and will fly the trip six days a week with no service out of Charles de Gaulle Thursday evening and no returning flight Friday mornings. The announcement comes just a month after Air France announced that their A350s will also service routes to Bamako-Snou International Airport in Mali and Felix Houphouet Boigny International Airport in Abidjan which will both start this Autumn. They also announced their first North American A350 route which will see service to Toronto’s Pearson International airport starting November 25th, 2019.
The A350 is planned to phase out Air France’s aging Boeing 777-200 fleet which has an average age of about 14 years, the oldest being 21 years old.
Air France and KLM also announced earlier this year that Air France would be taking delivery of the 21 KLM A350 orders while KLM takes delivery of the remaining six Air France 787 orders. The first of the 21 A350s from KLM’s order will be delivered to Air France in 2021 instead of 2020.
As for what passengers can expect in the A350’s business class cabin, Air France has decided to follow United Airlines by installing Zodiac Optima seats which can be found in the new United Polaris Business Class product. Currently Air France uses a reverse herringbone layout which will be replaced by a staggered 2-4-2 configuration. The new lay out will feature 34 total seats in business class as well as an additional 24 seats in premium economy and 266 in regular economy. Premium economy will also see a 2-4-2 configuration.
Air France’s first A350 was spotted in Toulouse last month in a near complete state pending the installation of it’s engines and interior. The expected delivery date is some point in September of this year.