We take a look at the tales affecting journey to, from and round France this week.

1. Heavy site visitors as faculty holidays start 

Visitors shall be heavy throughout France this weekend as the varsity summer season holidays start and households set off on breaks. 

Learn extra: Heavy traffic expected this weekend in France as summer holidays begin

Situations shall be “tough” throughout the entire nation at the moment for folks setting off on journeys and “very tough” in Ile-de-France and Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes. 

Nationwide site visitors alert service Bison Futé advises that individuals attempt to get out of Ile-de-France earlier than noon and keep away from elements of the A1, A10, A7, A62, A13, A84, A7 and A8 in the course of the afternoon and early night. 

Bison Futé has additionally warned that the A20 is closed in each instructions round Limoges due to a roadworks incident.

On Saturday (July 9), the site visitors will worsen as regards to departures, being “very tough” throughout all of France aside from Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes, the place it will likely be “extraordinarily tough”. 

Drivers are suggested to keep away from attempting to get out of Ile-de-France till after 16:00, and to avoid elements of the A10, A11, A84, A63, A62, A61 and the Mont Blanc tunnel. 

Visitors situations will nonetheless be “tough” in southeastern France on Sunday (July 10) however ought to return to regular throughout the remainder of the nation. 

Additional particulars will be discovered on the Bison Futé website. 

As many individuals take to France’s roads this weekend, SNCF Voyageurs CEO Christophe Fanichet has additionally mentioned that he’s anticipating a file variety of passengers on trains this summer season. 

“We expect 1.3 million French folks in our stations and trains” this weekend, he mentioned. “Folks need holidays, tourism, and we expect we are going to see 10% extra travellers than in 2019 […] There are not any trains within the yard, they’re all out.” 

2. Brittany Ferries opens bookings for 2023 

Brittany Ferries has this week opened ticket gross sales for 2023 sailings to and from France and Spain. 

The French routes obtainable are: 

  • Portsmouth-Caen
  • Portsmouth-St Malo 
  • Plymouth-Roscoff
  • Portsmouth-Cherbourg
  • Poole-Cherbourg 

It’s value taking into consideration that some routes – Plymouth-Roscoff and Poole-Cherbourg – solely begin crusing within the spring. 

The operator has versatile choices obtainable that means you possibly can amend a reservation at a later date. 

Costs fluctuate relying on the time of 12 months however typically seem like cheaper when booked additional prematurely. 

3. Trenitalia considers launching extra French traces 

Italian practice operator Trenitalia has floated the concept of opening new traces in France to hitch its present Paris-Lyon route. 

Roberto Rinaudo, the top of Trenitalia’s French subsidiary, mentioned: “Our ambition is in fact to develop: we’re within the means of finding out [the possibility] of different traces.

“The regional market could be very vital and it is a gigantic alternative for the entire railway system […] We don’t intend to have a presence in all areas however to decide on some strategic areas relying on the synergy that we will create with our high-speed traces.”

He mentioned one other line would take two years to develop. 

Trenitalia launched in France in December 2021 with two each day return journeys between Paris and Milan by way of Lyon, Chambéry and Turin.

It has since added three further each day companies on this route.

4. New French air routes to Turkey, Iceland and the US 

A number of airways are launching new or returning routes from France within the coming months. 

Transavia France has opened a brand new Paris-Bodrum (Turkey) service, which is able to run till September 18, as soon as every week. 

Icelandair is providing a Good-Reykjavik hyperlink, its second French route after Paris. 

Learn extra: City of Nice to bring back masks on public transport

Flights will run till August 27, with two companies every week. Icelandair is the one airline to supply this route. 

Vueling is providing flights from Paris-Orly to Los Angeles and San Francisco by way of Barcelona. The Los Angeles shall be served on Monday, Wednesday, Thursday and Saturday, and flights to San Francisco will run on Tuesdays, Thursdays, Saturdays and Sundays. 

5. French Ryanair workers to strike once more this month 

The SNPL union representing French Ryanair pilots has issued a strike discover for July 23 and 24, demanding greater salaries. 

The strike will contain pilots at Marseille, Toulouse, Bordeaux and Paris-Beauvais airports. 

Spanish Ryanair workers have already introduced 12 days of strikes this month, from July 12 to fifteen, 18 to 21 and 25 to twenty-eight.

6. British Airways proclaims one other wave of cancellations 

British Airways has cancelled a further 10,300 flights from the beginning of August till the tip of October, after asserting that it could be chopping its summer season schedule by 11%. 

Many of the cancellations contain flights from Heathrow on routes which frequently have a number of flights operating every day so affected passengers could possibly e-book onto one other service a number of hours earlier or later. 

BA’s highest frequency routes from Heathrow embody companies to Paris-Charles de Gaulle, Good and Geneva, so clients travelling to those locations may see cancellations at numerous factors over the summer season. 

Nevertheless, BA wouldn’t inform The Connexion precisely which French routes are affected. 

A spokesperson mentioned: “We took pre-emptive motion earlier this 12 months to cut back our summer season schedule to supply clients with as a lot discover as attainable about any adjustments to their journey plans. 

“As your complete aviation business continues to face essentially the most difficult interval in its historical past, regrettably it has develop into essential to make some additional reductions. 

“We’re in contact with clients to apologise and provide to rebook them or situation a full refund.”

British Airways is lowering the variety of flights it’s operating in response to the ‘slot amnesty’ being provided to airways, permitting them to quickly surrender some take off and touchdown slots with out shedding them completely.

The cancellations will have an effect on a complete of 1 million passengers, who ought to all be notified individually.

They are going to be entitled to an alternate flight as quickly as attainable, and might search to fly with one other service whether it is extra sensible than travelling with BA. 

If there isn’t a different obtainable and the delay lasts greater than 5 hours after the initially said flight time, it’s attainable to cancel and be refunded in full.

Though cancellations could have an effect on holidaymakers this summer season, a BA strike deliberate for this month has been known as off after unions secured an improved pay provide from airline bosses. 

7. A brand new Rennes-Redon practice line? Native councillors object 

The French authorities and practice operator SNCF have urged the potential for creating a brand new practice line between Rennes and Redon in a bid to enhance Brittany’s high-speed rail hyperlinks.  

In 2020, the federal government launched preliminary analysis into the potential for a brand new line however native councillors are involved by the concept. 

“It might be an actual blot on the panorama,” mentioned Pierre-Yves Reboux, president of the Vallons de Vilaine native authority. 

The Vallons de haute Bretagne and Porte de Loire councils calculate that the road would take up 11 to 12 hectares of land per kilometre. 

This might imply a complete of round 600 hectares “of agricultural or pure land [being used] for 50km of tracks, gaining 11 minutes between Rennes and Nantes at an estimated value of €1.25billion.” 

These native authorities have dubbed the concept a “heresy” and mentioned that: “This venture won’t ever be accepted by residents”. 

Native councillors are anticipated to provide their remaining judgement on measures aimed toward opposing the plans within the coming days. 

The state can also be aiming to make it simpler to get from Quimper and Brest to Paris, and enhance the variety of Nantes-Rennes TGVs to at least one each half hour. 

8. Paris airport employees name off strike this weekend

Firefighters working at Aéroports de Paris – Charles de Gaulle and Orly – have lifted their strike discover after reaching an settlement with airport bosses. 

Unions had deliberate to strike at the moment (Friday July 8), Saturday and Sunday, however after every week of negotiations, they’ve accepted the most recent proposal from Aéroports de Paris, which includes a €200 gross bonus for the fireplace crews, the CGT Transport union mentioned.

Different Aéroports de Paris employees have been provided a 3% pay rise, and have additionally determined to not strike. 

Though there shall be no strike this weekend, “different strike notices might be revealed concerning different points [such as staff shortages] over the summer season,” mentioned CGT Transport’s Fabrice Michaud. 

Learn extra: SNCF announces pay rises after strikes in France, unions want more

9. Practically 20,000 suitcases misplaced at Paris-Charles de Gaulle 

Movies have been circulating within the media of 1000’s of suitcases left piled on high of one another in Charles de Gaulle Airport following the luggage handler strike that befell there final week.

The strike led to a number of flights being cancelled, and others setting off with none instances within the maintain. 

This meant that baggage started to build up within the airport storage areas, and instances coming off the primary long-haul flights to reach that day couldn’t be distributed. 

A pc bug occurring the identical day additional slowed the luggage dealing with operation. Since then, the system has struggled to return to regular.

“In the mean time, we estimate that there are 20,000 instances which have been misplaced: round 17,000 on Air France flights, and round 3,000 others,” Claire Cazin of the CGT union advised BFMTV.

Air France has mentioned that it has introduced in reinforcements to clear the backlog, however the CGT claims that some folks won’t see their instances for a number of months.

10. Lille Airport extension given inexperienced mild

Nord’s prefecture has granted its approval for a venture aiming to modernise and lengthen Lille-Lesquin Airport. 

The plans have been regularly opposed by a number of completely different teams due to the air pollution it’s anticipated to trigger. 

The prefecture’s authorisation pertains to the environmental affect that the venture may have, and follows the approval issued by an inquiry committee earlier this 12 months. It got here on the situation that the airport works to restrict noise air pollution, preserve fauna and flora across the airport and offset its greenhouse fuel emissions.

For instance, the airport won’t be allowed to extend its night time flight schedule in order to cut back noise air pollution for residents. Nevertheless, the prefecture didn’t impose a curfew as a number of residents had requested.

Lille-Lesquin claims it’s seeking to enhance its infrastructure in order to supply a greater service to passengers because it expects site visitors to develop by 17-25% over the following few years. 

In 2019, 2.2 million passengers handed via the airport, which reached saturation level on some busy summer season days. The administration expects passenger numbers to develop to three.9 million per 12 months by 2039.

The Non à l’Agrandissement de l’Aéroport de Lille (NADA) affiliation has known as the choice “insupportable”, saying “It’s not attainable to decide to lowering emissions by 45% whereas not lowering air site visitors.” 

Greater than 12,500 folks have signed a petition opposing the transfer.

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