Late in 2017, Air France-KLM announced that it would be launching a new standalone air carrier to help push back against the encroaching budget and high-end competitors. Its name is Joon.
Late last week, Air France made the announcement that Joon would be an air carrier that focused on Millennials aimed at the young working client whose lifestyles revolved around today’s digital technology.
Air France said that Joon will launch in the fall with flights that are medium haul from Paris’ Charles de Gaulle. Its long-haul flights will debut during the summer of 2018, although the airline did not give any further details on routes or destinations.
The unveiling of Joon comes as the airline along with other traditional air carriers in Europe are battling on two fronts against their rapidly growing competitors.
The high-end carriers such as Turkish Airlines, Qatar Airways and Emirates from the Gulf and Middle East have grown rapidly across Europe. By doing so, they have started to take away connecting passengers on routes that have destinations in Australia, Africa and Asia.
At the other end of the spectrum, the budget class, discounters such as easyJet and Ryanair continue their proliferations of decades across the region, expanding into markets that were dominated previously by Air France, Alitalia and Lufthansa, amongst other traditional carriers.
However, even more ominously for the latter, at this point WOW Air and Norwegian are leading up an even newer breed of discount carriers that are quickly introducing fares that are cut-rate on dozens of newly established routes between European cities and North America.
With this competition staring in its face Air France-KLM has rolled out Joon. British Airways and Lufthansa have attempted moves of a similar nature with their Eurowings and Level respectively. However, those units are aimed mostly at the discount competition.
With Joon, Air France-KLM is planning to operate its unit with fewer frills than on standard international service. However, it has pushed back the notion that its new unit Joon will be another discount carrier.
The company said that Joon would not be an airline that is low-cost as it will have its own products and services reflecting Air France, and will be a lifestyle brand along with a state of mind. Joon, said a prepared statement, is designed to address a global audience.
No specifics were offered by Air France related to Joon’s launched, though a spokesperson did say that the unit would begin in the fall with six aircraft for medium haul flights prior to adding four aircraft for long-haul flights next year.