Air France to fly daily from Indian IT hub Bangalore to Paris

BANGALORE (XFNews) - Air France plans to run a daily direct service from Bangalore, India's technology hub, to Paris, boosting the number of its flights on the route from five a week, Air France-KLM Chairman and CEO Jean-Cyril Spinetta said.

The airline, which launched its Paris-Bangalore service November 1, gave no date for when it would start daily flights.

But since the beginning of the Airbus 330-200 service from Bangalore, "the response has been very promising," Spinetta told Agence France-Presse.

"We plan to have a daily flight from Bangalore to Paris soon to improve the quality of air service and increase the frequency from five flights now," he said late last night.

The passenger load factor has risen to 90 pct in December from 80 pct in November, with many passengers opting for a Paris stopover for connecting flights to Europe, Africa and North America, Spinetta said.

The carrier, which also offers direct flights to Paris from New Delhi and Bombay, has asked the French government to open a visa office in Bangalore to process visa applications faster and spur more business and leisure travel.

"With Bangalore alone accounting for about 20 pct of our traffic from India, we're upbeat about its potential to generate more passengers for our service, thanks to the rapid growth of the knowledge sector, especially the IT and BT (biotech) services," Spinetta said.

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