Air Mauritius / Air France HOP: Mauritius - Ljubljana via Paris


Written by Matjaž Nose

After more than two years it was time to fly somewhere far away again. This time my destination was the island of Mauritius. When I was checking possible destinations and flight options at the end of October last year for my May 1 vacation this year, I finally decided to book Air France flights to Mauritius. One of the reasons for such a decision was also the codeshare agreement between the two national carriers, Air France and Air Mauritius. This allowed me to select an Air Mauritius flight on the way back. Total cost of the ticket was €636 which is also not too bad.

Before I focus on the return flights from Mauritius to Paris and on to Ljubljana, let me briefly give you some information on the outbound Ljubljana - Paris - Mauritius flights. First flight from Ljubljana to Paris was operated by Air France HOP (E190) while the second one from Paris to Mauritius was on board Air France B777-300ER in ''Caribbean'' seat configuration. As the name indicates, Air France utilizes this aircraft cabin type mostly on routes to the Caribbean and destinations in the Indian Ocean. It can accommodate highest number of passengers among different Air France B777-300ER cabin versions, 472 in total in business, premium economy and economy classes. Seats in economy class come in 3-4-3 configuration as with most carriers worldwide (for example Turkish Airlines does offer more comfortable 3-3-3 seat configuration on its B777-300ER jets).

I have flown Air France widebody fleet many times in the past and I must say that on board service this time was a downgrade compared to my previous trips.

For such a long flight I expected at least a basic amenity kit but no, there were no amenity kits. No dental care products, no eye masks, no socks or earplugs, nothing. At least we were given one face mask (wearing face masks was obligatory during the flight), disinfectant wipe and a small bag of hand sanitizer gel. And yes, headphones were also available. Taste of food was not good at all, but the IFE was excellent with wide and very responsive touch screens.

Now let me finally focus on the flights I want to highlight in this trip report. The following two flights, first operated by Air Mauritius and the second one operated by Air France HOP will be on the menu of today's trip report:

Mauritius (MRU) - Paris (CDG)

Flight number: MK14 (AF codeshare flight AF7965)
Flight date: May 1, 2022
Aircraft type: Airbus A350-900
Aircraft registration: 3B-NBP
Departure time: 22:50
Arrival time: 08:35 +1
Flight duration: 11h 45
Seat: 32G (aisle)

Paris (CDG) - Ljubljana (LJU)

Flight number: AF1036
Flight date: May 2, 2022
Aircraft type: Embraer 190
Aircraft registration: F-HBLD
Departure time: 12:40
Arrival time: 14:25
Flight duration: 1h45
Seat: 7F (window)

Air Mauritius is the flag carrier of the Republic of Mauritius, an island nation with two main islands (Mauritius and Rodrigues) located in the Indian Ocean east of Madagascar.

This is a small nation with around 1.3 million inhabitants living on 2,040 km2. After being under French rule until 1810 and then under British rule till their independence in 1968, it is not a surprise that Paris and London are among the most important Air Mauritius destinations nowadays. The airline was set up in June 1967 by Air France, the BOAC enterprise, and the Government of Mauritius as the main stakeholders. Its current fleet consists of 2 A330-900neo, 4 A350-900 and 3 ATR72-500 airplanes. Widebody aircraft destinations include London, Paris, Mumbai, Antananarivo, Johannesburg while the nearby islands of Rodrigues and Réunion are mostly served by ATR72 planes, though widebody jets are also used on certain rotations to the island of Réunion. Did you know that the main airport in this French overseas territory, located near Saint-Denis is named after the famous French aviation pioneer Roland Garros who was born on the island? So, if you miss French Open in Paris, you can still head down to Réunion island and visit Roland Garros - this one is open 365 days a year!

From October/November this year, the following cities will also be added to Air Mauritius destination map: Hong Kong, Kuala Lumpur, and Perth (flight time to this Western Australian city from Mauritius will be 7 hours).

I spent the last days of my Mauritius adventure on the southeast coast and was staying in Mahébourg town which is very close to the airport. Since my flight to Paris departed late, at almost 11pm, I took a taxi (500 Mauritian rupees which is around €11) for a short, 15-minute ride to the airport.

Entrance to SSR International Airport

I had already checked in a day before (online check-in was open 30 hours before departure time) but not without problems. When I first wanted to check in through the Air Mauritius website, I got a reply that my seat on the Mauritius - Paris flight was on standby and that I have to check in at the airport, it was not possible to complete the check in process online. This was a problem because one of the requested documents to enter France is the Locator Form and seat number is obligatory data in this form. Therefore, you cannot fill it in before you complete the check-in process, and your seat number is assigned. Luckily, I have managed to complete the check-in process (for both flights) when I tried to do it again an hour later. For MRU-CDG flight I was assigned an aisle 32G seat and it was not possible to change it, but this was not a problem as I prefer aisle seats on long-haul flights, especially during night trips. Knowing my seat number, I had proceeded to fill in the French Locator Form though nobody checked this form later during the trip. Anyway, I was still curious why I had not been able to check in when I first tried to do it. It seems the flight was overbooked. When I checked if it was possible to buy a ticket for the same flight, I saw the flight was not available on Air Mauritius’ website anymore. Only the earlier Air France flight on the same day was still on offer. Once airborne, I also walked to the rear of the cabin and saw that all seats, including last rows, were fully occupied. I saw no empty seats.

As written before, Sir Seewoosagur Ramgoolam International Airport is located near Mahébourg while the capital city Port Louis is 50 km away on the other side of the island. I only had to drop my bag at the check-in counters. I was given printed boarding passes for both flights all the way to Ljubljana before I headed to passport control and security check. It was pretty straightforward, and I was quickly on the other side, near the boarding gate area.

Check-in area

Departure gate area

Our A350 bound for Paris

Boarding started some minutes after 10pm. Priority passengers were invited to board first followed by passengers seated in rows 30 and above. As my seat was 32G I was soon in a modern A350 aircraft ''Le Morne Brabant'' named after a peninsula at the southwestern tip of Mauritius with its famous basaltic monolith mountain. I liked the interior of the aircraft very much, seats in 3-3-3 configuration were more comfortable compared to my outbound Air France B777 flight. We were also given amenity kits which made our flight even more enjoyable. Soon after we were airborne, we were served dinner. I opted for chicken with mashed potatoes meal which was washed down by a local Phoenix beer. The food was ok, although nothing special. After dinner was finished, we were asked to pull down the window shades and the cabin crew dimmed the cabin lights. I was able to sleep during most of the flight and only woke up when we were somewhere above the northern Egypt. About two hours before landing, when we were flying along the Italian Adriatic coast, the lights were turned on again and cabin crew prepared to serve breakfast. It was a refreshing breakfast with cold pieces of different fruits, yogurt, chocolate cake, jam, butter and of course juice and coffee. It was very tasty. We landed some 20 minutes ahead of scheduled arrival time. Overall, it was a very pleasant night flight aboard Air Mauritius aircraft.

Economy class cabin

Amenity kit

Map of our flight



Swiss mountains as filmed by the aircraft's downward camera

Approaching CDG Airport

Parking position at CDG Airport

Since I had four hours to spend before my next flight to Ljubljana, I was not in a hurry although I had to transfer from terminal 2E to 2G. First, still at terminal 2E I had to go through security check and passport control. Then I just followed signs for 2G terminal. I took an inter-terminal bus that is operating inside the airport between different terminals. I do not like Charles de Gaulle airport very much, it can be quite stressful to transfer here especially if you have short connection times. When I arrived to terminal 2G I paid almost €8 for a sandwich and a bottle of water before I settled into a very comfortable seat close to a USB port. I was eating my sandwich, charging my mobile phone and browsing the internet to kill time before I finally headed towards the boarding gate for my flight back home. Flight was operated by Air France HOP, Embraer 190 was put on service as usual for thr Paris - Ljubljana service. We were served some food and drinks and I had chosen a vegetarian sandwich, coffee, and a glass of water. I do not have many details on this flight to report but since the airplane was small enough, I had decided to give you exact data on passenger load factor. Therefore, I walked through the cabin and counted empty seats. Since I was seated in the front of the cabin, I also had a good overview of the business class occupancy. Here is the report on my counting and calculating expedition. Starting with business class, there were 6 out of 8 seats occupied which means 75% LF. I counted 12 empty seats in economy class (out of 92), therefore economy class load factor was 87%.

Transferring from Terminal 2E to 2G

Terminal 2G waiting area

Ready for take off

Iran Air landed just before we took off from the same runway

Approaching LJU

We touched down on time. Since it was a Schengen flight there was no passport control, and I was free to go directly to the conveyor belt to collect my checked luggage. With all luggage in my hands, I was outside of the terminal soon looking for additional clothes to warm myself. Mauritius was much warmer compared to that Monday afternoon back home.

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  1. Anonymous09:11

    Great trip report from an exotic airline. Looks like a very good product.

  2. Anonymous09:11

    Also nice to see very good loads on AF to Ljubljana.

  3. QR 92113:58

    Turkish also uses 3-4-3 configuration on 77W.

    It's Qatar that uses 3-3-3.

    Still 2-5-2 is the best configuration.

    1. Anonymous11:49

      There is no Turkish 777 planes that would use 3-4-3.

    2. This comment has been removed by the author.

  4. Anonymous14:27

    Excellent trip report. I hope that EX YU compensate this kind of detail and time consuming reports. It really deserves.

  5. Anonymous15:52

    Quite interesting report! :) The difference flying an A350 and hopping into a small Embraer with no airbridge is quite huge. LJU airport surroundings look stunning!

  6. Anonymous16:09

    Love this kind of trip reports !
    But a question remains : Has Mauritius already recovered from the oil spill some time ago ?

    1. Anonymous11:38

      The oil spill was limited to a rather small area with only 2 hotels of over 100 bordering. Sadly it was a natural habitat. Meanwhile there is nothing left to be seen (for the eyes).

  7. Anonymous20:08

    Great report and beautiful photos Matjaz. Great to see a review of this rather exotic airline for many of us. Speaking of transferring through CDG, I agree 100%. Back in 2019, on my last flight with Adria, I had to fly from LJU via CDG and then connect to United to IAD. I had more than 3 hours to connect and I barely made it to my United flight. The signage is very confusing, the lines are long wherever you go and the airport staff is completely indifferent. It's a shame that the airport is in such a disarray as I really wouldn't mind flying AF to Slovenia next time, but just thinking of connecting through CDG makes me really nervous.

    1. Anonymous12:58

      Agree. CDG is a mess. In December (my last CDG transfer flight) transfer was much easier since at that time terminal 2G was still closed and also regional Schengen flights departed from 2F.

  8. Anonymous12:41

    I am still awaiting Air Mauritius to resume flights from King Shaka Airport in Durban to Indira Gandhi Airport in India. Pre covid passenger described an amazing flight. I cant wait to travel with Air Mauritius

  9. Anonymous12:47

    Lovely to read that flights from Perth to resume as it was for positive reports of the national airline - of our 5 flights with air Mauritius, only one was disappointing, and that was the return from Reunion Island to Roland Garros connecting for flight home. Thanks for a interesting, detailed report. Blessings ... Phil


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