Road Warrior: Comfort at Paris CDG, Stena ships for Belfast

The franchise agreement between Air France and Cityjet will end in October when AF  takes back the Dublin-Paris route

The franchise agreement between Air France and Cityjet will end in October when AF takes back the Dublin-Paris route

 

Air France from Dublin

The franchise agreement between Air France and Cityjet will end in October when the French carrier takes back the Dublin-Paris route. The five-times a day service to Charles de Gaulle Airport will be operated using Airbus A318, with 118 seats, an increase on the 85-seat Avro RJ85 used by Cityjet.

Last year almost 70 per cent of the 76,600 Irish-originating Air France passengers used the Paris airport for onwards destinations on their network and that is expected to grow. Air France has been marketing heavily in Ireland lately and distributing good value long-haul fares into the market.

It would appear that Air France and KLM are taking back control of their key feeder networks. KLM returned to the Irish market last October after 50 years of relying on Aer Lingus feeder services and are heavily promoting Schiphol as a transfer airport.

Paris upgrade

Paris CDG airport is celebrating 20 years of the hub system and owners ADP have spent hundreds of millions on improving passengers’ experience in the airport. Each week there are 25,000 possible transfer connections within two hours, a big jump from 1,900 when it opened. A massive new baggage hall is being built to deliver bags to gates faster. The most significant area for passengers is Instant Paris. Designed in the Haussmann style, this free transfer lounge has comfortable seating, areas to sleep, a library and cafes available to transit passengers. There is also a Yotel airside hotel where you can hire a room by the hour or night. Shower rooms are also available to hire.

Stena Belfast-bound

Stena Line has announced that it will be locating the four new vessels it ordered last year in Belfast. Two will be on the Belfast-Cairnryan route and two on the Belfast-Liverpool route. They will be the largest vessels ever on the Irish Sea. Capacity will be 3,100 lane metres for trucks, plus 127 cars and 927 passengers. The vessels are being built in China at the AVIC shipyard.

jscales@irishtimes.com

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