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AirFrance and Charles de Gaulle airport targeting Americans

Atlanta, Georgia
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AirFrance and Charles de Gaulle airport targeting Americans

My family of 4 just got back from a great trip to Italy. Seabourn cruise and 5 days in Roma. We flew Delta and their "SkyTeam Members" both ways. We had a mechanical issue on the way over, missed our connection in Detroit. They rebooked us through Paris. If you have never been to Charles de Gaulle airport, don't go. With an hour and a half to get to our connection, we boarded as they were closing to door. They move you around on buses going 2 miles an hour and security lines are huge. They are the most unorganized large airport in the world. Haven't got to the good part yet.....

Got to Roma, Air France had lost all of our checked bags, still not the bad part. Air Alitalia and Seabourn did a great job of tracking down 3 of the bags and got them to the ship. The one lost bag was my wife's and she want shopping, oh happy day. Cruise and stay in Roma was grand, then came the flight home. Which as luck would have it, was back to Charles de Gaulle.

We fly Air Altalia to Paris, no problem. Being the organizational giants that they are at Charles de Gaulle they dump you back out in the main terminal and you have to go back thru their main passport and security. We waited for 45 minutes in line,they checked our passport and boarding pass and sent us to another line. The young man told us that our carry bags were to big and we would have to check them. We had the exact same bags on 3 other flights, one of which was AirFrance????? They send us back out and AirFrance charges us 75 EUR per bag, 300 EUR, $410 US. In the line to pay this rip off "fee" were only Americans, 15 to 20 of us. There is no doubt in my mind they were targeting Americans to rip us off!!!!! Europeans went right through with the exact same size bag......

Delta needs to think about who they put on their "team", as these other airlines represent YOU.

Why go to France, go to Italy, you will love it. Oh and go non-stop, trust me.....

Atlanta, Georgia
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9 posts
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11. Re: AirFrance and Charles de Gaulle airport targeting Americans

I guess I my have confused some people. The person that flagged us was the CDG employee that looks at your passport and boarding pass, thus he knew we were Americans. AirFrance did not say our

bags were to big and they were never weighted, these were a standard " carry-on" bag, not expanded or overstuffed. We travel a great deal and carry them on in case our bags get lost, as they did on this trip. That way we have the basics for a few days.

My point is, why is a CDG employee dictating what size bag the airline will allow on it's planes, but Air France had no problem taking my money.

Why 20 Americans in line to pay, no other nationality. I don't believe in coincidence.

Just thought other travelers may benefit from this info.

edinburgh
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158 posts
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12. Re: AirFrance and Charles de Gaulle airport targeting Americans

No I don't think people were confused they were just pointing out the carry on size is different in The UK and The Continent than they are in the US. I would guess that there were 20 Americans in line as they too were not abiding by the Rules

Canada
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13. Re: AirFrance and Charles de Gaulle airport targeting Americans

If there were 20 Americans waiting to pay for excess baggage, I would assume that its because their bags are bigger than anyone else? No?

Its richly ironic that security is what it is in the interests of keeping AMERICANS safe.

Houston, Texas
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for Air Travel, Business Travel
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14. Re: AirFrance and Charles de Gaulle airport targeting Americans

"Its richly ironic that security is what it is in the interests of keeping AMERICANS safe."

Which is precisely why people have to go through extra screening on US bound flights. I flew on the flight right after the shoe bomber flew. Now *that* was a long line to survive!

Canada
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15. Re: AirFrance and Charles de Gaulle airport targeting Americans

Oh I know that, but because it is primarily Americans who are targeted by the maniacs - they should be the last to moan about extra/double/apparently unnecessary or intrusive security.

The rest of us can moan a little :)

Atlanta, Georgia
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9 posts
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16. Re: AirFrance and Charles de Gaulle airport targeting Americans

I had no issue with security. The lines were long, but that is not the issue I have with CDG . We were flagged in the line to passport control. I have not now or ever had an issue with security, open, check, search anything they feel a need too.

This carry on bag thing is something they must do on a daily bases. They had a open check-in for the carry on bags to be checked, then you had to go to another place to pay the "fee", ( they held our boarding passes) then back in the passport control line. All and all about 2 hours just to get thru passport control, and $400 poorer. We had these same bags on 2 Alitalia fights, in Europe, on this trip, connected through CDG, with no problem. We have carried on these same bags on many of our trips around the world and this was the first time they have ever been an issue.

If you feel this is the way a customer should be treated then this post is of no use to you, but I feel we were singled out. Follow the money, find the motivation, this was nothing more then a revenue generator.....

Nashville, TN
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17. Re: AirFrance and Charles de Gaulle airport targeting Americans

Give it up. You're flogging a dead horse. I doubt very seriously that you or any other American passenger was singled out by CDG passport control just to make some extra cash for AF. However, if that's what you wish to believe, go for it. There are many other options for getting to Europe and back. No need to fly through CDG if you don't want to.

Edited: 13 September 2011, 21:50
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18. Re: AirFrance and Charles de Gaulle airport targeting Americans

Follow the money? It would not be only Americans to target then if this were the real reason. I really do not believe that you and the other Americans were singled out.

As for CDG I agree it's a chaotic airport and not a nice one to transit. Also the complaint should not be against Air France.

Sunshine Coast...
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19. Re: AirFrance and Charles de Gaulle airport targeting Americans

Steve what weight and size were your bags?

If they were within the stated limits then you certainly do have a complaint - if not then just because you got away with it before doesn't mean you can continue to break the rules.

As you were charged $400 I can only assume that your bags were in fact overweight or oversized or both.

The "excess baggage police" don't target Americans - they target people with too much luggage. If the people with too much luggage are predominantly Americans it's probably because they are used to the larger carry on allowances that typically apply in the US and they haven't bothered to check what the rules are.

Atlanta, Georgia
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20. Re: AirFrance and Charles de Gaulle airport targeting Americans

I agree, lesson learned. Going back to South America in Dec, around the Horn this time. Many other great places to see, without dealing with these type of issues. Booked non stops both ways, worth every penny.....