Air France to fly an A380 between London and Paris?

The world's largest passenger aircraft may soon be flying on one of the world's shortest routes between two major cities. Air France is reportedly considering deploying one of its 538-seat Airbus A380 jets on the 215-mile route between London Heathrow and Paris Charles de Gaulle.

Why would Air France use the A380 – designed with long-haul flights in mind – on the short hop across the English Channel? To more efficiently train its staff, according to a report in the French Le Figaro newspaper.

"On a long haul flight we can train two staff in 24 hours but on a short haul flight we can do several a day," an Air France source tells paper, according to The Connexion, a French English-language publication.

Elsewhere, an Air France spokeswoman gives another possible reason to Air Transport Intelligence. That publication writes: "She adds that Paris-London is a busy route and other carriers have shown that they can justify large-capacity aircraft on relatively short, high-density sectors."

Le Figaro says the Paris-London A380 service would begin June 12, though Air France officials say nothing's official yet. An airline spokesman tells AFP the idea "is being looked into," though he adds "nothing has been confirmed."

Business Traveller magazine says Air France would use the A380 on the route "temporarily," though the publication suggests it would likely "be a matter of weeks rather than months."

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