By Chase Hagl
Air New Zealand Poised to Provide ‘Best Sleep in the Sky’ with New Products
Air New Zealand unveiled its plan on Wednesday for completely redesigned cabins on its Boeing 787-9 Dreamliners, creating a much more comfortable experience for passengers on the carrier’s long-haul flights.
The announcement comes as a response to the airline’s “overwhelming amount of customer feedback on the importance of sleep and comfortability during its flights.”
The carrier states that the cabin, “will give customers more choice than any airline in the world, providing the best sleep in the sky regardless of the cabin customers choose to fly in.” The revamped cabins are set to enter service as early as 2024.
The geographical location of New Zealand creates an opportunity for the airline to operate many ultra-long-haul routes. Due to the length of some of these routes, a majority of the customers’ first day is spent onboard.
“We have zeroed in on sleep, comfort, and wellness because we know how important it is for our customers to arrive well-rested. Whether they are heading straight into a meeting, or to their first holiday hotspot – they want to hit the ground running” stated Air New Zealand Chief Executive Officer Greg Foran in a press release. “Research shows us the first night away from home is the hardest to get a good night’s sleep so everything we do on board is to help create a sense of calm.”
Air New Zealand will introduce many new options for travelers choosing to fly with the carrier. One feature that stands out is the self-proclaimed, “Skynest,” a sleep pod in the sky. The aircraft will feature six of these pods and will be an add-on for passengers seated in economy class, allowing them to reserve by the hour.
“We wanted to offer our Economy customers a lie-flat option and that’s how Skynest was born. It’s going to be a real game-changer for the economy travel experience,” stated Foran.
The carrier’s Dreamliners will retain its already established and successful “Skycouch” going forward. First introduced in 2019, the Skycouch is a reservation for an entire row of three, in which one can convert to a lie-flat bed. Additionally, one is provided with extra cushions, blankets, a special seatbelt enabling a comfortable sleep, and a mini mattress to lay flat on the seats for extra comfort.
Premium Economy will also enjoy a nice upgrade, allowing for more privacy, as well as the ability to recline further without interrupting the passenger behind them.
Air New Zealand’s Business Class passengers can choose from Business Premier or Business Premier Luxe. Business Premier includes a private pod, not only giving passengers more privacy but more comfortability allowing for a better night’s sleep. The seats include a retracting middle divider for passengers traveling with a companion.
Business Premier Luxe gives passengers the ultimate experience, offering the most space and privacy. Everything included in Business Premier is included in the Luxe package, with an added fully closing the door as well as space for two to dine throughout the flight.
The configuration of the cabins will include either four or eight Business Premier Luxe seats, 22 or 42 Business Premier seats, 33 or 52 Premium Economy seats, 125 or 213 Economy seats and six Skynest sleep pods on some ultra-long-haul aircraft.