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Bienvenue Air France

Posted June 17, 2007

     “It took us 16 years, for them only 9 hours and 45 minutes,” said Frédéric Desagneaux, consul general of France to a joyous crowd of French and non-French who all came to Seattle-Tacoma International airport for the same purpose: to celebrate the arrival of Air France Flight 46 from Paris with good food, music, and champagne. The plane was traditionally greeted by two giant water canons as it taxied in at the airport.  

    On Monday, June 11 Air France has begun non-stop daily flights between Seattle and Paris. From now on Seattleites will be able to fly non-stop to four European cities: to London on British Airways; to Copenhagen on Scandinavian Airlines; to Amsterdam on Northwest, and to Paris on Air France.  

    “It is a very, very exciting day,” stated Governor Christine Gregoire who attended the event together with officials from Air France and the Port of Seattle. Gregoire went on to stress the long history of mutual respect and friendship between Washington State and France. To the cheers of the crowd she proclaimed June 11 as “Air France Day.”  

    Approx. 50,000 people a year, including many Boeing and Microsoft employees, travel between Seattle and Paris. In the past, they had to make a connection through another city.  

    “This is a very good day for Seattle and Washington,” John Creighton, Port of Seattle Commission President said, adding that this will create new jobs in Seattle and more opportunities in trade and tourism. 

    The Emerald City is Air France's 13th U.S. gateway.


 All photos: © Jean Philippe Bagel

Bienvenue Air France!

French colors

Finally here!

Traditionally greeted

Waving the French and American flags

Governor Christine Gregoire proclaiming Air France Day

To the right of Gregoire:
Frédéric Desagneaux, consul general of France

Travel guru Rick Steves chatting with the Governor Gregoire


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