Today, Air New Zealand unveiled one of the biggest overhauls in decades. The company rolled out the newest cabin that will debut on eight Boeing B787-9s which will be delivered starting in 2024. Based on the announcement, the airline will provide more choices than other airlines with seven different choices of seat passengers can experience.
Air New Zealand will offer new Business Premier Luxe, Business Premier, Premium Economy, and Skynest, the world’s first lie-flat sleeping pods in economy class. There will be an upgrade to the Economy Class as well.
The idea of Skynest concept was initially announced in 2020. Air New Zealand’s CEO Greg Foran stated that “Collecting extensive customer feedback over five years, researching about the importance of sleep and comfort, was the key factor in creating these new cabins.”
Air New Zealand’s Boeing B787’s Newest Cabin Layout
Air New Zealand’s New Cabin Layout on Boeing B787s:
There will be two different aircraft configurations on the brand new Boeing 787s.
The version 1 configuration will feature:
- 4 Business Premier Luxe
- 22 Business Premier
- 33 Premium Economy
- 213 Economy (Including Skycouch and Stretch)
- 6 Economy Skynest
And the version 2 configuration will feature:
- 8 Business Premier Luxe
- 42 Business Premier
- 52 Premium Economy
- 125 Economy (Including Skycouch and Stretch)
- 6 Economy Skynest
Air New Zealand’s Business Premier Luxe Seat:
Air New Zealand’s newest business class cabin will be called Business Premier. But within this cabin, there will be one or two rows depending on the aircraft to feature “Business Premier Luxe Seat.”
This “Luxe” seat will be similar to Jet Blue’s Mint Suite where there will be a fully closing door for total privacy and space for two to dine.
Air New Zealand’s Business Premier Seat:
The only difference between the “Premier Luxe” seat and the regular Premier seat is the door and extra space for the ottoman.
Air New Zealand’s Premium Economy Seat:
Air New Zealand has also revamped its Premium Economy seats. Unlike the current “reclining seat,” the new premium economy will provide more comfort and privacy to passengers. The seat will be manufactured by Zim Aircraft Seating, which supplies Swiss’s premium economy seats installed on their B777-300Er. Thus, you will find the two designs similar.
Air New Zealand’s Economy Skynest:
The most anticipated product everyone was waiting for has been revealed. It will be the first out in the industry and the world’s first sleep pod in the sky, Skynest. Air New Zealand will install six pods on the forward section of the rear economy class cabin for passengers to stretch out and get some sleep during the flight.
These 6 lie-flat pods will be a bunk type with 3 levels on each side in a “V” shape. There is a small staircase in between the pods for passengers to step on in order to reach the upper side of the pod. The dimension of the pods will be 6.7ft by 2ft, spacious enough for most passengers.
The bunk comes with a storage area, a privacy curtain, a reading light, and a USB port. Of course, bedding will be provided as well. For those who have seen the crew rest on board, Skynest will be very identical to them, only to be used by passengers.
Air New Zealand’s Economy Skcouch and Skystretch:
Years ago, Air New Zealand introduced the world’s first Skycouch seats in its economy class. Basically, on the Skycouch, you can convert the whole row of economy class into a couch. The seats are the same, except there is a special footrest you can lift up to create a couch, which could be a lie-flat luxury in economy class.
As the name suggests, Skystretch seats have more legroom to stretch out your legs. This seat will feature an additional seat pitch in between the standard economy seats. While exact details of the seat location are not yet shown, I assume Skystretch seats will be the exit row seats.
Air New Zealand’s New Economy Class Seat:
The new economy class seats are designed with more storage, comfort, and space and a 50% bigger screen for entertainment.
The airline has also added a Sky Pantry to the Premium Economy and Economy cabins, so customers can stretch their legs, grab a bite to eat and hydrate at their leisure throughout their journey.
Air New Zealand revealed one of the most unique economy class products today. Thanks to the intense research from the company on passenger feedback. The airline also revamped its business class cabin which is great compared to the current product but not too innovative. Sadly, the only downside is you will have to wait for two years until you can get to fly with these new products.
With the introduction of new cabins and seats, Air New Zealand’s B787-9 will be a premium-heavy aircraft and its cabin experience is set to be world class.