Air Tahiti Nui nonstop service to Paris from Los Angeles is the preferred airline for travelers in the know. Rated “Best Airline Pacific Region” and "Best Cabin Staff Pacific Region" in 2007 by Skytrax, this airline also flies regularly to Paris thanks to the Tahiti's French roots, letting you enjoy the crème de la crème of hospitatlity in the very competitive Pacific airline services on a European vacation.
Air Tahiti Nui is usually the best bargain and the most comfortable flight from the City of Stars to the City of Lights. Even with all that, it is the service both in the airport and in the air make it one of the most desirable flights to France. (Needless to say, the same recommendation applies if you are headed the other direction on one of Air Tahiti Nui’s nonstop flights from LAX to Tahiti.)
For a gal accustomed to at long lines with three or four turns of a snaking queue, checking-in to Air Tahiti Nui both at LAX and at Charles De Gaulle in Paris was a shock. A couple of people in line for Poerava, the premium classes, and half a dozen waiting in Economy. This is a major benefit of a small airline with few flights. The agents at the counters were unhurried and took time with each person as if they had all the time in the world. In short order I was free to pass through security and into the terminal area with plenty of time to spare.
The flight from Los Angeles to Paris is nonstop, a huge plus in my book. Changing planes on the way to Europe is not so bad, but coming back can be pure misery, particularly with US carriers. Why? Because after you go through US customs passport and baggage checks at their stateside hub, you are jettisoned OUTSIDE the secure areas. You must lug you bags (I suppose that’s why it’s called ‘luggage’) through the regular airport security check all over again and wait in line with the rest of the domestic mob while dead tired and dehydrated from your long transatlantic flight. If you have piles of heavy duty free bags, you haul them as well. I have stood in this second security line for as long as 90 minutes, too tired to weep. Don’t do it. Make the traveling part of the vacation and fly nonstop on Air Tahiti Nui.
Inside the plane the plusses keep adding up. The planes are cheery in tropical blues and yellows, and you are welcomed with a tiaré bud. The tiaré is a fragrant white flower that only grows on the Polynesian islands and it is the symbol of the airline. And the cabin attendants are not buttoned down in the typical airline corporate suit, but are decked in more casual printed shirts and dresses. The effect is relaxed and friendly. The service on Air Tahiti Nui is rated among the best in the world, a wonderful start and end to any trip.
The Air Tahiti Nui Airbus 300-340 fleet is a bit more comfortable than the average Economy seat, with a bit more room and a great deal more quiet. The seats are laid out 2-4-2, so there is no dreaded middle seat as there is in other planes’ 5-seat center section. Plus each seat has its own screen to watch the movies of your choice both first-run and classic. (Woody Allen’s “Manhattan” was one of the choices on my flight.). The airline gives you a small ‘comfort’ kit with socks, a sleep mask, earplugs, and such. And the food is French in style, with wine included rather than extra as it would be for an American airline.
For passengers looking for the special comforts or premium class travel, Air Tahiti Nui's Poerava Business Class (read article) is a special treat compared to the experience of flying on other carriers.
All in all, if you are going to Paris, Air Tahiti Nui should be your first choice to fly.
Air Tahiti Nui website