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Air France vs. Emirates

With Emirates and Airbus going head to head in the past days, we take a slightly different look at the issue by comparing the two brands.


A competent website with all the necessary information available to surfers, Kipp is satisfied with the experience of using the Air France website. What is annoying about the site, though, is that if the search function can’t find a flight it doesn’t provide alternative options or explains what has happened—instead you are faced with an error message (and mounting irritation). And if we are going to be picky, we have to say that the site could do with a makeover—something to reduce the clutter and give it a cleaner look.

Editor's Score 0

When it comes to navigation and ease, Kipp much prefers Emirates’ straight forward and clutter-free online portal. With the options laid out a lot clearer, Emirates allows the user to see as much information or as little of information as they like when booking a flight. We also find the website more accessible as the user has the option, upon entering, of what language the site will be in, with a selection of languages far too many for Kipp to count.

Editor's Score 1

Kipp did a quick (very unscientific) search. We tried to book a ticket with Emirates and Air France to five different random locations in the same time period and found, to our surprise, that Emirates always came out cheaper. When considering flights to Europe, Air France was comparable to Emirates but not cheaper. We did appreciate the variety of booking options offered by Air France though: a flier can choose between five different payment options: First : La Première, Business: Affaires or Premium Affaires, Premium Economy: Premium Voyageur, Economy ( unrestricted ) : Voyageur, Economy (lowest fare) : Voyageur.

Editor's Score 0

Let’s face it: when it comes to flying, most of us in the Gulf are frequent flyers, shuttling back and forth between our home countries and Dubai, for instance. And then there are all the other trips in between, for conferences, business trips and short vacations. So price matters. We were surprised to find Emirates was cheaper, given common perceptions of the airline (which have been borne out by our own investigations). But we’ll hold our hands up: This time, Emirates was cheaper.

Editor's Score 1

Air France has been routinely announcing the creation of new destinations, but from our part of the world the flights routes do seem limited. While Air France does fly to 75 foreign countries including 13 destinations in the USA, 12 in Italy, 11 in Germany and 8 in the United Kingdom, 24 of their routes are headed to domestic destinations; we are slightly put off by how Eurocentric the schedule really is. Still, it’s an impressive total.

Editor's Score 1

Constantly growing, Emirates currently flies to over 100 destinations in 60 countries. And unlike the rather limited scope of Air France, Emirates has frequent flights to various parts of the world. Most recently, Emirates started flights to Tokyo, Amsterdam, Prague, Baghdad and Madrid.

For being a whole lot more international than Air France, we give Emirates some credit too.

Editor's Score 1

Built with a very similar system, the Air France and Emirates in flight entertainment are definitely comparable. The only difference between the two is the prevalence of French cinema available aboard Air France. And because Kipp is a fan of French cinema, Air France gets our vote for this one.

Editor's Score 1

One of the first aircrafts to boast of a sophisticated in flight entertainment complete a private screen for each passenger, Emirates works tirelessly to keep their award-winning, in-flight entertainment system, featuring over 1,200 channels of on-demand entertainment updated. We have no qualms about Emirates ICE, and have always found something amusing to keep us entertained on board, but we’ve gone with French cinema this time.

Editor's Score 0

Kipp’s heard a few stories of Air France’s more – how should we say it? – mature air stewards and stewardesses, and that wouldn’t bother us except for the fact they never seem very friendly. But we have to admit the cabin crews’ uniforms, designed by Christian Lacroix, are probably the most fashionable uniforms we’ve seen aboard a flight

Editor's Score 0

Upon employment, Emirates award winning cabin crew are put up in some of Dubai’s finest apartments. receive full medical care. and enjoy state-of-the-art facilities in training and at work. Is it any surprise that Cabin Crew open days are always over-crowded? And for all they invest in their cabin crew, Emirates sure gets their money worth—their staff are, in Kipp’s experience, always friendly, warm and hospitable.

Editor's Score 1

More than fifty years older than Emirates, Air France does have a much older fleet, which can be observed by the keen and informed flyer. The Air France fleet consists of 413 aircraft in operation, the average lifespan of these aircraft is estimated at 10 years.

Editor's Score 0

Relatively young and growing at a much faster pace, Emirates currently operates more than 120 new, wide body airplanes with almost 200 more on order, including 58 giant Airbus A380 aircraft, making Emirates the largest customer for the world's largest passenger jet. The average Emirates flight is said to be half the age of the average European airline. As such, Emirates planes tend to be newer, cleaner and up-to-date.

Editor's Score 1

Flying since 1933, Kipp thinks it only natural that Air France has experienced a number of plane-crashes. In fact it has had more than ten plane crashes; the most recent Air France plane to crash was in 2009 when Air France flight 447 from Rio to Paris, carrying 216 passengers and 12 crew, mysteriously disappeared in heavy weather without sending any distress signal, four hours after taking off from Rio. No survivors were found.

Editor's Score 0

Granted, Emirates is far younger than Air France (more than 50 years younger), but to date it boasts a clean record when it comes to plane crashes. Though we understand that the carrier is still young, a track record like Emirates fills us with confidence when we try to calm those pre-flight jitters.

Editor's Score 1

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1 Comment

  1. zouzou on October 19, 2010 3:04 pm

    What s going on kipp? has emirates airlines put presure on you to be nice? You are comparing the lousy french carrier to Emirates airlines. Get real Air france sucks for the average passenger. You want to compare things, compare Emirates to Singapore airlines and let s see who is the best.
    Did you forget about emirates airliens trying to restrict its gold and silver from the business lounges? Or selling at double the price when you go from Dubai?


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