On Sunday, March 31, Air France inaugurated its new flight between Dallas Fort Worth (DFW) and Paris Charles De Gaulle (CDG). Dallas will be the French airline’s 13th destination in the United States. The flight will operate on an Airbus A330 with a capacity of 224 seats.
This new connection brings the French group back to Dallas, eighteen years after its first failed attempt following the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks. Air France, a subsidiary of the Air France-KLM group, is now the the 16th international carrier to serve DFW. The French company will be in direct competition with American Airlines, whose headquarters are in Fort Worth and which offers daily flights to Paris from DFW year-round on the Boeing 787 Dreamliner. “Air France holds a 25% market share in the United States in a very competitive sector where alliances such as British Airways/American Airlines, Lufthansa/United Airlines, and low-cost airlines are powerful. Our major asset is the connection we offer to all of Europe, Asia, India and Africa,” said Stéphane Ormand, Air France’s Vice President and General Manager for the United States. He announced that Air France will add 10% more seats between Europe and the United States this summer.
The choice to strengthen the French company’s presence in Texas is not insignificant: “Dallas is the fourth most populated metropolitan area. Industrial activity is booming in the financial, medical, aeronautical and technology sectors. DFW is the number one region in the United States for capital investment and job creation,” he said. “In addition, 22 companies on the Fortune 500 list have their headquarters in Dallas, including Exxon-Mobile and AT&T. That’s in addition to the 120 French companies present there.” Not to mention the tourist and cultural sites.
On board this flight, passengers will be able to enjoy new seats in business class that turn into flat beds as well as WiFi and a Michelin-starred menu. Flights will operate three times a week (Wednesday, Friday and Sunday) from March 31 to June 30. They will increase for the summer period to 5 flights per week (Monday, Wednesday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday), from July 1 to September 30. In the autumn, the frequency of flights will again be adjusted to three times a week due to low demand in winter.
Beyond Dallas, Air France wants to continue to strengthen its position in Texas, the 10th largest economy in the world, with possible expansion into Houston, where it already operates flights. Other route openings are possible, but the French airline is also counting on its partnership with Delta Airlines for expansion, which links Indianapolis, Cincinnati and Raleigh to Paris-Charles de Gaulle.