By Anna Ellis •
Updated: 08 Nov 2023 • 14:04
Paris Airports Brace for a Deluge of Flight Cancellations. Image: Air France / Facebook.
Paris’ bustling airports are set to experience a wave of flight cancellations in the early months of 2024 as France embarks on a critical mission to modernise its ageing air traffic control systems.
The current French air traffic control system, rooted in the 1970s and sometimes relying on old-school paper strips to manage incoming flights, is long overdue for a substantial makeover.
With the skies over France becoming increasingly crowded due to surging air traffic, a comprehensive overhaul is in the works, and it’s bound to create some hiccups for travellers in the first two months of the year.
With a staggering 2.5 million flights navigating French airspace each year, any disruptions have the potential to send ripples across the European travel landscape.
During this upgrade phase, approximately 16,500 flights are expected to be cancelled, as reported by the ever-watchful business news channel, BFM.
Airlines have been given a stern warning to scale back their operations at Paris’ major airports, including Charles de Gaulle, Orly, Le Bourget, and Beauvais, with a targeted reduction of 20 per cent from January 9 to February 14.
All of this hustle and bustle stems from the need to put the new air traffic control system through its paces at the Athis-Mons control centre, France’s largest, overseeing all air traffic in the Paris and Beauvais regions.
The effects are being felt by travellers, with Air France bearing the brunt of the disruptions.
The airline has had to cancel a significant number of short and medium-haul flights, amounting to more than 4,200 flights within the Air France-KLM group.
To ease the inconvenience for passengers, the airline group has taken proactive measures, pre-cancelling these affected flights, communicating with affected travellers, and offering alternative flight options on the same day.
The overhaul might create some turbulence in travel plans, but it’s all in the name of safer and more efficient air travel over France.
So, if you’re planning a trip through the City of Lights in early 2024, it might be a good idea to double-check your flight details and keep your options open.
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Originally from Derbyshire, Anna has lived in the middle of nowhere on the Costa Blanca for 19 years. She is passionate about her animal family including four dogs and four horses, musicals and cooking.
What happened to the great EU air traffic control system that was supposed to remove the French system and all their farcical strikes?
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