Gorgeous: Air France Unveils First Airbus A220-300

Gorgeous: Air France Unveils First Airbus A220-300

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Air France has just unveiled its first Airbus A220-300, which is a huge step forward for the carrier’s short haul fleet.

Air France’s Airbus A220-300 order

In 2019, Air France announced a huge Airbus A220 order — the airline ordered 60 A220-300s, with an additional 30 options and 30 acquisition rights. This represents the largest Airbus A220 order of any European airline, and Air France plans to take delivery of all of these planes by 2025.

The A220 is intended to replace Air France’s entire Airbus A318 and A319 fleet, and part of the A320 fleet. The carrier has 17 A318s, 30 A319s, and 44 A320s.

The A220-300 has fantastic economics, and is well suited for Air France’s short and medium haul network:

  • The A220 offers cost reductions of 10% compared to Airbus A318 and A319 aircraft
  • The A220 consumes 20% less fuel than the aircraft it replaces
  • The A220 reduces CO2 emissions by 20% compared to the aircraft it replaces
  • The A220 has a noise footprint 34% lower than the aircraft it replaces

This will help with Air France’s goal of reducing CO2 emissions per passenger kilometer by 50% compared to 2005 levels.

I’ve gotta say, the A220 looks mighty swanky in Air France’s livery. As you can see, the plane also sports Air France’s signature winged seahorse on the front of the fuselage, and on the engines.

Air France Airbus A220-300 exterior
Air France Airbus A220-300 exterior

What are Air France’s Airbus A220-300s like?

Let’s be honest — in general planes used for intra-Europe flights don’t exactly have the most exciting interiors. They’re all about efficiency, by maximizing the number of seats that can fit on the plane, given competition from low cost carriers. Business class within Europe is generally just economy with a blocked middle seat and superior service.

That being said, Air France has configured these planes about as nice as you could hope for, and the A220 in general is a joy to fly.

Air France’s A220-300s feature a total of 148 seats, in a 3-2 configuration:

  • The A220 is in a 3-2 configuration, meaning that 80% of passengers have an aisle or window seat
  • The A220 features the widest seats in the market, at 48cm (~18.9″), and they recline 118 degrees
  • The A220 seats feature adjustable headrests, leather upholstery, and an ergonomic seat cushion
  • The A220 seats have USB A and C ports, and tablet or smartphone holders integrated into the seatback
  • The A220 features Air France Connect, which is Air France’s inflight Wi-Fi service
  • The A220 cabin features Air France’s signature colors, including shades of blue, white, and a hint of red
  • The A220 has large windows and mood lighting

Like I said, that’s about as good as you could expect — power ports and Wi-Fi within Europe are a winning combination.

Given the 3-2 configuration, I’m curious if business class passengers seated on the side of the cabin with two seats will get both an aisle and a window, or if Air France won’t do seat blocking in that part of the cabin. It sure would be cool to get an aisle and window seat in intra-Europe business class.

Below are some pictures of the Air France Airbus A220-300 cabin interiors.

Air France A220 cabin
Air France A220 business class cabin
Air France A220 seats
Air France A220 seats
Air France A220 seatback entertainment holders

Where will Air France’s Airbus A220-300s fly?

Air France will start flying its A220-300s as of October 31, 2021. The planes will initially fly to:

  • Berlin, Germany (BER)
  • Barcelona, Spain (BCN)
  • Madrid, Spain (MAD)
  • Milan, Italy (LIN)

Then during the 2021-2022 winter season, the A220s will also start flying to:

  • Bologna, Italy (BLQ)
  • Rome, Italy (FCO)
  • Lisbon, Portugal (LIS)
  • Copenhagen, Denmark (CPH)
Air France will soon start flying its A220s

Bottom line

Air France has taken delivery of its first of 60 Airbus A220s. The airline will put these planes into service starting in late October 2021, and by 2025 all 60 planes will be in Air France’s fleet.

The A220 is a phenomenal plane, both in terms of economics and passenger comfort. Not only is the plane fuel efficient, but the seats are wide, and there’s only one middle seat in each row.

I’m thrilled to see Air France renew its fleet with this plane — Air France is only the second “global” European airline to take delivery of the A220, after SWISS.

What do you make of Air France’s new Airbus A220?

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  1. PHILIPPE AVRIL

    Here is the page https://www.airfrance.us/US/en/common/guidevoyageur/classeetconfort/plan-cabine-MC-plan-A220-148.htm

  2. PHILIPPE AVRIL

    The seat map is avaible on US Air France web and shows in business free seat on both side of the plane: solo seat A and 2 seats D and F

    1. Ricardo F

      Great news! May you please share the link for the webpage where you saw this?

    2. PHILIPPE AVRIL

      https://www.airfrance.us/US/en/common/guidevoyageur/classeetconfort/plan-cabine-MC-plan-A220-148.htm

    3. Ricardo F

      May you please share the link to the webpage where you found this?

  3. Bob

    "Given the 3-2 configuration, I’m curious if business class passengers seated on the side of the cabin with two seats will get both an aisle and a window, or if Air France won’t do seat blocking in that part of the cabin. It sure would be cool to get an aisle and window seat in intra-Europe business class."

    It is not done this way on the flights operated by Hop, so Air France may not change that with the A220.

    1. Ricardo F

      That is the reason why I refuse to fly AF, KL, BA or IB when they operate with Embraer planes.

  4. henry

    has the horse replaced the skyteam badge? odd

    1. Icarus

      No. The hippocampe ailé has been around since 1932. The SkyTeam logo is on the fuselage by the forward doors

  5. EC

    "Given the 3-2 configuration, I’m curious if business class passengers seated on the side of the cabin with two seats will get both an aisle and a window, or if Air France won’t do seat blocking in that part of the cabin. It sure would be cool to get an aisle and window seat in intra-Europe business class."

    If they manage this as Swiss does when flying in Business on the A220, you get the...

    "Given the 3-2 configuration, I’m curious if business class passengers seated on the side of the cabin with two seats will get both an aisle and a window, or if Air France won’t do seat blocking in that part of the cabin. It sure would be cool to get an aisle and window seat in intra-Europe business class."

    If they manage this as Swiss does when flying in Business on the A220, you get the two seats to yourself - so yes, essentially a window and aisle seat experience. It's the obvious place to seat yourself if you're flying J on these.

  6. Tim Dunn

    Delta is up to about 50 A220s between the smaller 100 and longer 300 version and it is a total step up from every other narrow body. Both Air France and Delta would love to see Airbus build the ‘500’ version as an A320 B738 replacement and it will be a great day when Airbus moves forward

  7. LessinSF

    The seat reclines 28 degrees not 118. Pet peeve.

  8. Fred Blogs

    Echo, what are you smoking? First class disappeared from short haul European flights three or four decades ago.

    Business class on these flights will be OXO OO.

    1. Ricardo F

      Fred: Where did you get confirmation that the business class arrangement will be 2-2?

  9. Echo

    Gorgeous plane, love the herringbone carpet. Such a small touch but adds a lot of style. Cannot believe they installed 3-2 in first class. 3-3 with blocked middle seat is at least a slight improvement over economy. If that’s a fixed divider between the forward cabin and coach, as it appears, I cannot believe they didn’t install a 2-2 product like DL offers - especially if they’re going to block middle seats on side of...

    Gorgeous plane, love the herringbone carpet. Such a small touch but adds a lot of style. Cannot believe they installed 3-2 in first class. 3-3 with blocked middle seat is at least a slight improvement over economy. If that’s a fixed divider between the forward cabin and coach, as it appears, I cannot believe they didn’t install a 2-2 product like DL offers - especially if they’re going to block middle seats on side of the plane, that leaves them with four pax across anyway in much less desirable seats.

    1. Roamingredcoat

      Guessing it's a flex divider. They'll move it up/back as needed depending on F load.

    2. Icarus

      It’s a flexible divider depending on loading . There’s no business class seating on European and North Africa flights. On the 3 seat side , the middle will be blocked

    3. Ricardo F

      Icarus: Where did you find confirmation that the middle seat will be blocked?

    4. toto

      This is for flexibility so they can convert easily to an all economy space if needed for example if they charter the plane to transavia as it happened to me on a flight I bokked on Transavia this summer but finally operated by Air France

  10. Phillip

    Swiss certainly blocks one of the 2 seats in business.

  11. Max

    Wouldn‘t you agree that Swiss is a global airline?

    1. AA70

      Air France's route network is far more expansive and "global" than Swiss's, Swiss only serves a handful of international destinations outside of the EU

    2. Stuart

      A handful? Are you joking? Swiss has around 20 long haul destinations mixed in with many more non EU short haul flights. It is absolutely a global airline.

    3. Bubba

      Well, Swiss now goes by two names: "Lufthansa South", out of Zurich, and "Romandie Ryanair" out of Geneva.
      Check that, three: out of Basel it's known as SBB.

  12. imcdnzl

    Technically Lufthansa might have been the first "world" airline to have the A220 through SwissAir subsidiary. I flew in one and agree it's a lovely plane - better than their service...

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PHILIPPE AVRIL

Here is the page https://www.airfrance.us/US/en/common/guidevoyageur/classeetconfort/plan-cabine-MC-plan-A220-148.htm

PHILIPPE AVRIL

https://www.airfrance.us/US/en/common/guidevoyageur/classeetconfort/plan-cabine-MC-plan-A220-148.htm

Ricardo F

Icarus: Where did you find confirmation that the middle seat will be blocked?

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