QANTAS announced a world-first for customers travelling in business class on the Airbus A330 aircraft between Australia and Asia, Hawaii and key domestic routes.
The new business suites, which will be rolled out from the end of this year, will allow customers to recline from take off to landing.
The Vantage XL seat, which is manufactured by Thompson Aero Seating, was designed and built in conjunction with QANTAS. QANTAS conducted ergonomic trails and monitoring inflight to ensure customers would take full advantage of the seat and its offerings.
Qantas Group Chief Executive Officer Alan Joyce said that he was excited to unveil the Business Suite, which would redefine the inflight experience for customers travelling on more than 15 international and domestic routes.
“We believe this product will deliver the best travel experience between Australia and Asia, and probably the best domestic travel experience anywhere in the world. We can’t wait for our customers to experience it for themselves,” said Mr Joyce.
“We’ve listened to what matters most to our customers and done extensive ergonomic trials to deliver the highest levels of comfort, privacy and intuitive design.
“There’s enough space to eat while continuing to work, which is something our business customers said was very important to them, and plenty of storage room to keep the range of electronic devices that people now travel with.
“A key point of difference from all other carriers is that the seat can be in recline and fitted with the mattress from take-off right through to landing. With many Business passengers enjoying a meal in the lounge prior to travelling, this means more time to rest and sleep,” he added.
Qantas Creative Designer, Marc Newson, said that intelligent design and functionality were the guiding principles behind the new A330 Business Suites.
“The design was based on a real understanding of what Qantas customers needed on longer domestic flights and overnight international flights from Asia, with practicality, comfort, privacy and style in mind to create a relaxing environment to work, dine or sleep,” said Mr Newson.
Domestic Business Class customers will also enjoy a Panasonic eX3 inflight entertainment system on Airbus A330 aircraft, allowing them to stream content from entertainment libraries directly to their device.
Other changes to seating include the retrofit of Recaro Economy Class seats to Airbus A330 aircraft. These are the same seats currently fitted to the Airbus A380 aircraft.
The task of refurbishing aircraft seating takes around one month per plane. The work will take place in the QANTAS heavy maintenance facility in Brisbane. The first international Airbus A300 plane with the refurbished seats will take off in January, 2015, while the domestic refurbished planes will take off in late December.
It’s an exciting time for QANTAS customers looking to get better value out of their Business Class flights. What do you think about the new seating?