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Operator: Air France

Air France was the second largest commercial Connie operator by number of aircraft, after Trans World Airlines. The first of 4 L-049s was delivered in June 1946. 9 L-749 Constellations were ordered in December 1946 with entering service in June 1947. In 1949 6 L-749As were ordered, followed by a further 4 in October 1950. The 4 L-049s were sold and 4 L-749s were bought from Pan American. In April 1951 an order for 10 Super Constellations was placed. By September 1951, Air France had taken delivery of the final batch of 749As, bringing the fleet up to 23 aircraft (one aircraft had been lost in 1949).
In June 1953 the first of 10 L-1049Cs was delivered and put on the first class services from Paris to New York the following month. In 1954 first 3 and later 10 Super Gs were ordered additionally to the 21 L-749As and 10 Super Cs operated by that time.
In July 1955 Air France announced an order of 12 L-1649A Starliners which was reduced to 10 in 1957. 7 further Super Gs were put into service in 1955. A final batch of Super Gs was delivered in winter 1956/1957. In July the first L-1649A was delivered and put on the Paris-New York run cutting off the L-1049G time of approx. 16hrs. In February 1958 the last Starliner had been delivered, and the Polar route was inaugurated in April 1958 with F-BHBT which cut back the time to Tokyo to 30 hrs.
In 1959 Air France was the largest Constellation operator outside the USA, with 16 L-749As, 22 l-1049C/Gs, and 10 L-1649As. Air France was also the only other operator in the world apart from TWA to have operated all the basic Constellation models 049/749/1049/1649.
In 1959 with the introduction of the Caravelle into the European network, and in 1960 with the arrival of the Boeing 707 , the Constellations were, however, ousted from most of the front line routes. The passenger Super Gs were largely withdrawn by 1963, similarly to the L-1649As which were replaced on the West African routes.
From 1961 several Super G’s were converted into Freighters and used until October 1967, when the last 5 Super Constellations were withdrawn from service.

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