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More flights, new routes: France - US air travel gears up for summer

Transatlantic airlines are anticipating a successful summer and have added destinations such as Los Angeles and Newark to their offerings

Airlines are adding France-US flights to their schedules in anticipation of a busy summer Pic: Aerial-motion / Shutterstock

The US is emerging as the destination of the summer for people in France, as flight reservations rise and airlines add new routes. 

Flight comparison websites are seeing six times more interest from people looking for US flights this year in comparison to 2021, Le Journal du Dimanche reports. However, a significant rise was to be expected, considering that US borders remained closed to tourists until November. 

This renewed interest is prompting airlines to add new destinations to their offering. Low-cost, long-haul airline French Bee has just added a new Paris-Orly - Los Angeles route, with president Marc Rochet saying: “We will start with three weekly return trips, then go up to six over the summer.” 

French Bee already offers flights from Paris to New York and San Francisco, and will be opening a Miami route in December.

Transatlantic flights are also being offered by the new low-cost Icelandic airline, Play, which was founded in June 2021 and resumed its US-bound flights last week. 

Play offers a route between Paris and the US which includes a “coffee break” stop off in Reykjavik. Here, passengers will disembark and then board another plane headed either for Washington or New York.

Another airline, French operator La Compagnie, will be boosting its US-France offering to seven weekly flights between Paris and New York next week. 

La Compagnie’s CEO Christian Vernet said that “72% of the tickets we sell are in the US. They are mainly customers travelling for tourism but also businesspeople who have begun to travel much more again.” 

Since US borders reopened, airlines have increased their monthly transatlantic offering by 21% to 2,200.

This summer, Air France will be operating as many transatlantic flights as its fleet can manage, and has already recruited new pilots and mechanics for the purpose.

“We will even be running more flights than in 2019,” said the company’s US programme director, Olivier Piette.

There will be 200 return flights to 14 different destinations each week, including a New York ‘shuttle’ operated in conjunction with Delta and offering eight flights per day.

Finally, American company United Airlines is now offering daily flights between Nice and Newark-Liberty in New Jersey until September. The service leaves Nice at 12:10 and arrives in the US at 15:45, with return flights taking off at 19:55.

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