Flight Report: flying like a millennial on Joon
Flight #: AF1149
From: Barcelona (BCN)
To: Paris Charles de Gaulle (CDG)
Flight time: 2h approx.
Aircraft: Airbus A321
I am writing this flight review of Joon well aware that it may have already an expiry date.
Air France’s new Canadian CEO has already aired his views about the airline’s low cost “millennial” experiment and a potential closure in the near future is not totally out of the question.
Although I must confess that I share some of Mr. Smith’s doubts about the market positioning of Joon, it was an interesting experience to finally be able to fly this young airline, and precisely on what it actually was its very first route (Joon’s very first flight ever was bout a year ago between CDG and Barcelona. It has since fully replaced Air France on this route).
My Joon flight was but the first leg of a longer itinerary that involved a stopover at CDG and a later flight to Montreal on Air France’s mainline (a separate flight review will follow about this part of the itinerary). Therefore, all my pre-flight experience, including the online check-in, was undistinguishable from that of Air France. This would have possibly not been the case had I booked directly on Joon’s website or app.
As you can see, Joon’s “purplish”-blue colour prevails throughout the cabin, as well as the rather casual uniforms of the crew.
Small detail, but notice the row number printed in big fonts on the side of the overhead bins. Quite practical to locate your approximate seat location at once, without having to slowly check row by row.
Seat pitch, was better than I expected (basically same as on Air France - I don’t think they changed the seats!) and they reclined (which is more than you can hope for these days!), an always appreciated featured in morning flights when you have sleep to catch up with.
The leather (or leather-like material) that covers the seats is also a plus.
As a low cost carrier of sorts, on Joon you have to pay for most food and drinks onboard, BUT, tea, coffee and water are complimentary. For most passengers on short-haul flights this may be just good enough.
The food menu, although pricey, stands the comparison with many an airport café, both in terms of price and products on offer. (In fact, it may even be cheaper than many bars and cafés in central Paris!).
I ordered a €6 ham and cheese baguette and this choice turned out to be a resounding success. Way better than I expected, a generous serving and of good quality.
Did not regret the purchase at all. Interesting how the packaging aims to convey this “premium” message, even if it is just a rather simple sandwich, but I guess the idea is to communicate that, yes, it is not a cheap sandwich but it is worth what you are paying for.
Another (positive) surprise: there was, theoretically, free IFE onboard, but we were told by the crew that, for technical reasons, it was not operative in this particular flight.
In order to enjoy it you must download the Joon app first, though, which I managed to do before take off. (although as mentioned above, I could not use it)
I don’t recall receiving any announcement from the airline about the need to download the app to enjoy IFE, quite surprising, since you would like to make this type of complimentary services well known to anyone that wants to listen, particularly if you are targeting millennials. But, again, this may be due to me having done all the pre-flight process through Air France. Perhaps I am missing the whole picture here and those travellers that get their pre-flight communication direct from Joon have another story to tell.
(Disclaimer: I work as a consultant on IFE projects that may involve competitors of Joon)
So I reverted to old-fashioned IFE: the inflight magazine, that in the case of Joon is simply that of Air France.
The rest of the flight was uneventful and got to Paris to connect to my Air France flight.
Not the best of experiences, since a small delay added to an already tight connection time and Charles de Gaulle’s notorious shortcomings when it comes to transfers between different terminals (in this case involved a rather long wait for a bus and, then, a ride on a crowded vehicle that was not fit for the task at all!).
Our take: beating expectations. Let’s see what happens in the next few months…