Changi Airport News

Air France La Première First Class is back between Singapore and Paris

First Class is back on Air France flights to and from Singapore, but scoring a miles redemption in the sought-after La Première cabin isn't easy.

SkyTeam carrier Air France has confirmed that it is bringing First Class back between Singapore and Paris this month, as the airline boosts capacity on the route for the upcoming season, including an overall ramp-up to nine times weekly operation.


That will represent an increase of almost 30% on pre-COVID capacity for Air France out of Changi Airport, with Singapore Airlines similarly confirming in its upcoming winter schedule that it too will fly more seats to and from the French capital than it did before the pandemic hit.

Air France is ramping up Singapore flights

Air France has been progressively increasing its Singapore flights since the Lion City’s border restrictions were eased in April this year.

  • During the pandemic, the airline had 3 x weekly Boeing 787-9 flights on the route
  • Two of these flights each week joined Singapore’s Vaccinated Travel Lane (VTL) programme in October 2021
  • Flights were increased to 4 x weekly from May 2022, a month after the VTL concept was ditched
  • Flights were increased to 5 x weekly from June 2022, and upgauged to Airbus A350s, with 16% more seat capacity
  • Flights were increased to 6 x weekly from mid-September 2022
  • Flights were increased to 7 x weekly from mid-October 2022
  • Flights will increase to 9 x weekly from 31st October 2022, 7 of which will include La Première

New schedule with La Première

From 31st October 2022, Air France will switch its daily AF257 overnight flights from Singapore to Paris to four-class Boeing 777-300ER aircraft, which include a four-seat La Première cabin. AF256 services will also make an overnight trip in the Paris to Singapore direction with the same product on board.

“We are happy to see our La Première suites return to Singapore after a two-year interval due to the COVID pandemic. We look forward to welcoming back La Première customers in order to provide them with an exceptional travel experience.”

Nicolas Ricard, Commercial Director South East Asia & Oceania, Air France-KLM

There will also be a new addition for the carrier, in the form of daytime services from Singapore to Paris twice per week (AF255) using three-class Boeing 777-200ER aircraft, though do note that these don’t feature La Première.


Here’s how the airline’s schedule looks from 31st October 2022.

Flights with La Première
Flights without La Première

Singapore    Paris

31st October 2022
to 25th March 2023

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is Air_France_small.png AF255
This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is Air_France_small.png AF257

* Next day

Paris    Singapore

30th October 2022
to 24th March 2023

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is Air_France_small.png AF254
This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is Air_France_small.png AF256

* Next day

Singapore will be the only city in Asia featuring Air France’s La Première service from late October 2022.

La Première

The latest La Première seats on Air France’s Boeing 777-300ERs aren’t exactly cutting-edge, with the design dating back eight years to 2014, but they remain widely regarded as one of the top First Class products in the world, both for the hard product design and the all-important service levels, fine food and beverage selection.

The four-seat La Première cabin. (Photo: Air France)

Quite unlike the “gold bling” of the Middle East carriers, think elegant sophistication with the Air France First Class product.

“La Première represents the highest level of French excellence and is an intrinsic part of Air France’s DNA”

Benjamin Smith, CEO, Air France-KLM

Unsurprisingly, the cabin is regarded as one of the most aspirational award redemptions, though it’s not easy to book using points, as we’ll outline later in this article.


Here’s the simple layout of the single-row, four-seat cabin, which also benefits from two toilets shared between a maximum of four passengers.

La Premiere Seat Map. (Source: aeroLOPA)
Air France La Première seats each have a wardrobe for hanging your items. (Photo: Air France)

The ‘A’ and ‘L’ seats boast four windows, which have electronically-controlled blinds like those you find on business jets.

Four windows for every ‘A’ or ‘L’ seat passenger in Air France First Class. (Photo: Air France)

Each suite measures three square metres, with seats that extend to 201cm-long beds with 77cm of width.

(Photo: Air France)

One of the product’s signature features is a full-length curtain you can draw around your suite, which allows you to decide how much privacy you would like from partial to fully-enclosed, unlike some other suites designs where it’s either “doors open” or “doors closed”.

The Air France First Class cabin with privacy curtains drawn around the suites. (Photo: Prince of Travel)

Fine dining is of course a significant focus in this cabin, with Air France outlining the following key points to us in its recent press release.

On departure from Paris:

  • Menus are signed by French Michelin-starred chefs and prepared with 100% French meat, dairy products and eggs, bread and pastries, as well as fish from sustainable fisheries.

On departure from Singapore:

  • Triple Michelin-starred French chef Julien Royer designs tailor-made meals for Air France customers.

Buddy dining is possible, thanks to a large 60cm x 60cm table, and an ottoman seat for your guest.

Fine dining in Air France First Class. (Photo: One Mile at a Time)

“With a VIP welcome and assistance on the ground, a dedicated lounge in Paris offering a fine-dining experience by Alain Ducasse and exclusive beauty treatments by Sisley, an elegant suite on board and menus signed by French Michelin-starred chefs, La Première guests will enjoy a unique travel experience.”

Nicolas Ricard, Commercial Director South East Asia & Oceania, Air France-KLM

For a detailed overview of what to expect on board La Première, check out this detailed review from 2019.

Air France recently revealed that it is currently working on a brand new La Première cabin, set to be unveiled around a year from now.


Just this month we’ve also seen another major European carrier, Lufthansa, announce that it’s First Class cabins are getting a suite-style makeover, from 2023 onwards.


If you’re departing in La Première from Singapore, you’ll be invited to use the excellent Qantas Singapore First Lounge, which boasts à la carte dining, a choice of Champagnes, a wide variety of Aussie wines, and a cocktail bar.

Fine dining for Air France La Première passengers starts at the Qantas First Lounge in Singapore. (Photo: MainlyMiles)

Air France La Première passengers departing from Singapore benefit from the La Première service at the Qantas First Lounge, located in Terminal 1. Qantas First Lounge offers an à la carte dining experience inspired by Singaporean culture, a premium selection of liqueurs at the cocktail bar, dedicated zones for relaxation and luxury shower suites to refresh yourself.

Air France

Spacious shower suites with artificial skylights (and crazy wall tiling) are a welcome start to the trip, for those who have potentially had to check out of their hotel room many hours earlier.

Shower suites at the Qantas First Lounge in Singapore. (Photo: MainlyMiles)

Starting your La Première journey in Paris, however, is where the ground experience is really stepped up a notch.

Here, a private chauffeur service will pick you up within a 40km radius and drive you to the airport in a premium vehicle.

There you’ll enjoy the La Première lounge – consistently rated as one of the top First Class lounges in the world.

Bar at the Air France First Class lounge in Paris. (Photo: Live and Let’s Fly)

This includes à la carte dining, a bar, a sleeping zone and a Spa by Silsey, a French “phyto-cosmetology” company, offering pre-flight treatments.

The menus and wine lists [in La Première lounge] have been selected by French Chef Alain Ducasse and his teams. Customers will feel like they’re dining in a renowned restaurant thanks to individual table service and the most prestigious vintages from the Air France wine cellar.

Air France

Once it comes time to board, you will benefit from fast-track security, and then be chauffeured to your aircraft in another luxury vehicle.

You’ll be chauffeured directly across the tarmac to your waiting aircraft when departing from Paris in La Première. (Photo: One Mile at a Time)

Here’s a recent review of the lounge, so you know what to expect.

How to redeem

Air France is quite generous with award space in its La Première cabin, typically making two of the four seats available for award booking from the outset.


Awards typically mirror the carrier’s cheaper “F” fare bucket in this cabin, if you’re using a resource like ExpertFlyer to view availability.

This Air France flight probably has two award seats available in La Première

Now to the bad news…

The reason Air France can offer such good award space in this sought-after cabin is that it’s nearly impossible to book with miles.

Air France does not allow redemptions into La Première from partner frequent flyer programmes, including from members of other SkyTeam carriers, restricting redemption to its own Air France-KLM Flying Blue scheme.

Even if you’re a Flying Blue member, you’ll have to have Gold or Platinum status in the programme in order to access La Première award space (Silver members had this benefit removed in October 2019).

For our readers here in Singapore, that would mean accruing 280 XP points in a single membership year, by taking paid flights with Air France, KLM, Qantas, or a SkyTeam carrier like Vietnam Airlines, and crediting your flights to the programme. That’s no mean feat.

Even then, award pricing for the La Première cabin is steep. Pricing is dynamic, but starts from 230,000 Flying Blue miles one-way per passenger between Singapore and Paris, plus the airline’s carrier-imposed surcharges (currently S$263) to pay, on top of mandatory taxes and fees.

That’s roughly equivalent to KrisFlyer Advantage rates for a Singapore – Europe sector in SIA First Class!


If you’re a Flying Blue Gold or Platinum status holder with enough credit card points racked up in Singapore to achieve this, you’ll be able to transfer from Citi and Standard Chartered into the programme.

Transfers to Flying Blue are supported from Citi credit cards in Singapore

What are the alternatives?

Unless you want to fork out cash for a Singapore – Paris ticket in La Première, which will cost an eye-watering S$13,600 one-way or S$16,000 return based on travel in November 2022, there’s another possibility for snagging a seat in this elusive cabin.

While upgrade awards into La Première are also restricted to Flying Blue Gold and Platinum members, cash upgrades are open to everyone, even those who redeemed miles from a partner programme in Business Class.

Obviously this won’t always work, because it depends on Air France offering cash upgrades on your flight, which it will typically (but not always) do if there are empty seats in the cabin when online check-in opens, 30 hours before the scheduled departure time.


It’s also not a cheap option, with one of our readers upgrading from Business to First prior to the pandemic for EUR 1,500 (around S$2,100) on a Paris – Singapore flight, but for what’s probably a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, that’s no doubt worth it for some people.

If you’re lucky, your company has paid for your Business Class seat in the first instance, but even then the personal outlay here is not insignificant.

Which Business Class?

Air France uses several Business Class seat products on its fleet of long-haul aircraft.

For the upcoming winter season from late October 2022 through to late March 2023, all flights on the Boeing 777-200ERs and -300ERs serving Singapore have the same Safran Cirrus seats in a 1-2-1 configuration (think Cathay Pacific long-haul Business Class).

Air France Boeing 777-300ER Business Class. (Photo: Air France)

You can view the seat maps of Air France’s Boeing 777s serving the Singapore route via the following links on the excellent aeroLOPA site:

As you may have read recently, Air France is in the process of installing a new Business Class seat on some 777-300ER aircraft, featuring closing privacy doors.

Air France new Business Class seats. (Photo: Air France)

This new Business Class product will not feature on the Singapore route for the time being, since it is initially only being installed on the carrier’s three-class Boeing 777-300ERs that don’t have a La Première cabin.

It is also not coming to the Boeing 777-200ERs for now.

Singapore Airlines is also increasing Paris flights

Prior to COVID-19, Singapore Airlines was operating 10 times weekly Boeing 777-300ER flights to and from Paris during the winter season.

The carrier has already returned to this frequency using the same aircraft types, having cut back on services during the pandemic, and will increase even further to twice-daily 777-300ER services during the peak Christmas and New Year holiday period.

Together with Air France, that will mean the highest seat capacity we’ve seen between the two cities during the winter season, in recent years.




One of the most sought-after First Class cabin experiences in the world is making its way back to Singapore this month, in the form of the highly-regarded Air France La Première product.

Unfortunately, snagging an award seat remains a near-impossible feat, given the highly restrictive eligibility policy among the airline’s own top-tier frequent flyers, but if you are one of the few who can do it the award space itself is usually generous.

For many of our readers, upgrading from a cash or award Business Class ticket is the most likely way to score one of these seats, though it comes with no guarantees, even if you pick a flight with space available in the First Class cabin.

Overall, Air France will operate 30% more capacity to and from Singapore with this latest aircraft upgrade, including seven weekly flights with La Première on board.

(Cover Photo: Air France)



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